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Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Pelini won't be punished for postgame remarks

By ESPN.com staff
ESPN.com

Nebraska coach Bo Pelini won't be reprimanded or fined for comments he made about officiating after the Cornhuskers' tight 13-12 loss to Texas in the Big 12 championship game.

After nearly three weeks of prodding from the Nebraska media, Nebraska athletic director Tom Osborne finally made a comment about some of Pelini's postgame antics.

Osborne noted in his statement that Pelini was professional in his postgame news conference with members of the media. But cameras captured Pelini after the game yelling: "BCS! That's why they made that call."

Pelini also had a heated postgame conversation with Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe immediately after his press conference concluded.

The Nebraska coach's emotional outburst was triggered by the end of the championship game. The game clock originally expired with Nebraska ahead before game officials put one second back on the clock. That extra time enabled Hunter Lawrence to convert a game-winning 46-yard field goal as time expired, giving the Longhorns the conference championship.

But Pelini's comments did not draw a negative response from Beebe or the conference office, Osborne said.

"The commissioner registered no dissatisfaction with his conversation with Bo," Osborne said in remarks reported by the Lincoln Journal-Star. "I shook his hand and thanked him for talking with Bo. At no time did Nebraska coaches or staff indicate disrespect to the commissioner."

Pelini's outburst was understandable after the emotional game. But the fact is that the Texas victory ended up costing the Big 12 money in the BCS rather than providing extra money for it.

If Nebraska had won the Big 12 title game, Texas undoubtedly would have qualified for the BCS as an at-large team. That addition would have provided an extra $4.5 million for the conference it will not now make because the conference has only one team in the BCS.

And it also has made the Longhorns' trip to Lincoln next Oct. 16 perhaps the most eagerly anticipated home game for Nebraska fans in many years.