BOCA RATON, Fla. (CBSMiami.com) – The Florida Atlantic Owls decided to go defense in their head coaching search and landed one of the better defensive coordinators in football.
Monday, the FAU Board of Trustees approved Carl Pelini to be the next head coach of the Owls.
Pelini has been coaching with his brother at Nebraska for the last few years and had reestablished the Cornhusker defense as one of the toughest in the nation.
“At the end of the day, I felt that the guy I would trust my career on the also is Carl Pelini,” FAU athletic director Craig Angelos said.
Pelini’s contract is worth a total of $2.49 million over five years.
If the Owls sell more than 12,000 season tickets, he’ll get a bonus of $100,000. He’s also eligible for bonuses like bowl appearances, conference titles, and meeting academic standards.
Pelini’s rebuilding job at Nebraska will be a cakewalk compared to what he faces at FAU. The Owls were arguably the worst team in college football in 2011.
Statistically speaking, FAU’s offense was ranked next to last in the country in scoring and the defense ranked 104th in scoring out of 120 teams.
Pelini will meet the media for the first time Monday afternoon.
When Pelini arrived at Nebraska, the once proud tradition of the blackshirts had faded and the Cornhuskers ranked 112th in defense. The Huskers ranked seventh in total defense in 2009 in Pelini’s first year and ranked 11th in 2010.
Pelini holds two master’s degrees from Kansas State and Ohio State. He’s also served as Minnesota State’s defensive coordinator and was an assistant at Ohio University from 2005-2007.
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