FAU Head Football Coach And Defensive Co-ordinator asked To Leave over Drug Abuse AllegationsBy Staff Reporter, UniversityHerald Reporter
Carl Pelini, Florida Atlantic University (FAU)'s head football coach had to abruptly resign on Wednesday following his admission of 'illegal drug abuse' after being confronted with evidence. Pete Rekstis, defensive coordinator also tendered his resignation on the same charges.
Athletics director Pat Chun said that 'illegal drug use' is totally unacceptable. 'No other football staff or student-athletes (were) involved.' He further said that neither of the former coaches was allowed to address the FAU team before leaving the campus, USA Today reports.
"We hold ourselves to a standard here," Chun said, a wire agency reports. "That behavior is unacceptable for a lot of reasons. Like I told our student-athletes today, we all have responsibilities. When you wear the logo of Florida Atlantic University, you wear it 24 hours a day. We hold you to a higher standard and you have to hold yourself to that standard. Decisions were made that ultimately hurt some people, and there's consequences for those decisions."
After being tipped about drug usage by the two coaches on Monday, an investigation was initiated immediately. Once the probe concluded, Chun confronted the coaches, Wednesday.
"I apologize for exercising poor judgment," Pelini said. "My greatest concerns at this time are for me family, the dedicated FAU players and my staff. I am confident that Pat Chun and the University administration will continue to move the program forward."
Due to the abrupt resignation, offensive coordinator Brian Wright has been named the interim head coach. Linebackers coach Jevan DeWitt has been named the Owls' defensive coordinator.
"Number one, I'm concerned for our football team," Chun said. "Obviously, I'm disappointed in Carl and Pete, but my thoughts are more about our kids and our assistant football coaches and what's going through their minds. This is a tough deal for kids and we've got to help these kids process this. They all looked up to these two guys and that's a tough place to be."
Pelini, who held the position of head football coach for more than one and a half seasons, has compiled a record of 5-15 as of last Saturday. Prior to FAU, he served as defensive coordinator on Brother Bo Pelini's staff at Nebraska.
Possible successors to Pelini might be Alabama assistant head coach Mario Cristobal, Cincinnati offensive coordinator Eddie Gran, and Miami offensive coordinator James Coley.
Owls are currently 2-6 and will play host to Tulane, Saturday.