Bo Needs To Go
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When Mark "Bo" Pelini was hired to lead Nebraska's football program on December 2, 2007, the defensive-minded coach with the tough attitude had Cornhusker fans thinking his style was the style that would bring NU back to the college football promised land. Six years later, it is suddenly becoming all too clear that Pelini is not going to be the man who takes Nebraska back to #1 in the polls.
Has Pelini won? Yes.
Has he won to Nebraska's tough standards? No.
His overall record at the school is 54-22, with a record of 31-12 in league play, with no conference titles.
Over the last couple of seasons, I have been somewhat critical of Pelini in my articles. His teams weren't really all that bad, but I knew they weren't really all that close to being ready for the top ten, either. I am a firm believer that a coach should get four full seasons to get his guys in place on the field to really show what his system can do. So around the start of the 2012 season I circled his name and said to myself 'here is someone that has every resource in the world to start winning big, yet hasn't done so.'
2012 was Pelini's fifth season, and once again the Cornhuskers fell short of a conference championship under Pelini. They did win their division, but were promptly defeated 70-31 by Wisconsin on national TV in the Big Ten Championship Game. Nebraska has won their division four times under his guidance (three times in the Big Twelve and once in the Big Ten) but have yet to win the conference championship game and move on to a BCS bowl game.
This lack of a BCS-level bowl game appearance over the last five seasons (and very improbable this season once again) is what is going to lead to his dismissal soon. Ugly losses such as the Wisconsin loss mentioned above, a home stomping by UCLA earlier this season (where the Bruins scored 42 unanswered points), and most recently a road loss to lowly Minnesota have folks at the end of their patience in Lincoln. On top of that, Pelini has not always gotten along with the fans. His personality is, well, raw, let's just say.
So all this leads me to say that Nebraska needs to seek new leadership. Pelini just is not the one, and it is time to move on.
It is still unclear whether AD Shawn Eichorst and AD emeritus Tom Osborne will in fact pull the plug on Pelini following the Huskers' regular season finale against Iowa November 29th. But with no conference hardware and no BCS bowl game appearance in six seasons as head coach, I think they should. It isn't that Pelini has been a terribly horrible coach, but more so that at Nebraska they expect a little more, like being in BCS-level bowl games, and there is nothing wrong with that.
Nebraska is one of the premier coaching jobs in college football and the list will be long and impressive of those seeking to be head coach number 32 at the school.
As Eichorst mulls over his decision, I hope he thinks of the potential at Nebraska. The tradition, and commitment to football, there is rivaled by few, and I have to believe that somewhere in this great nation a man is drooling to lead NU back to college football's elite.
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