Huskers officials mum; Pelini has ties to Stoops

Updated: December 16, 2003, 2:45 AM ET
Associated Press

LINCOLN, Neb. -- Nebraska athletic officials kept mum Sunday on a report that interim head coach Bo Pelini has been offered a coaching job on Bob Stoops' staff at Oklahoma.

The Omaha World-Herald reported in its Sunday editions that Pelini has been offered a job with the Sooners, possibly to replace recently departed co-defensive coordinator Mike Stoops.

The newspaper cited anonymous sources in its report.

Nebraska athletic department spokeswoman Chris Anderson said Sunday that neither Pelini nor athletic director Steve Pederson would comment on the report.

Asked by the World-Herald if he had an offer from Oklahoma, Pelini replied, "I wouldn't even say if there was."

Pelini has strong ties to Bob Stoops, who grew up in Pelini's hometown of Youngstown, Ohio.

Stoops' father, Ron, coached Pelini at Cardinal Mooney High in Youngstown. When Pelini became Nebraska's defensive coordinator last year, he drew comparisons to the Stoops brothers and their high-energy style of defense.

Mike Stoops, Bob Stoops' brother, accepted the Arizona head coaching job late last month and left Oklahoma after the Dec. 6 Big 12 championship game, which Oklahoma lost to Kansas State, 35-7.

Mike Stoops coached the defense on the field; Brent Venables coaches from the booth.

Oklahoma sports information director Kenny Mossman said Bob Stoops doesn't usually comment on personnel issues. Stoops was in New York during the weekend to watch quarterback Jason White win the Heisman Trophy.

Pelini was named interim head coach upon Frank Solich's firing Nov. 29. Pelini and Turner Gill, who was the assistant head coach under Solich, are the only two publicly known candidates for Nebraska's head coaching job.

Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press