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  Carl Pelini

Carl  Pelini

Player Profile

Defensive Line

Alma Mater:
Youngstown State, 1989

Carl Pelini is in his third season back in his home state as the Bobcats' defensive line coach.

In his two seasons mentoring the Bobcat defensive line, Pelini has turned the unit into playmakers. In 2006, the Ohio front four accounted for 44.5 of Ohio's 103 tackles for loss, including 14.5 of the team's 23 sacks. Two of Ohio's starting front four earned second-team All-MAC honors (Landon Cohen and Jameson Hartke) in 2006. It was the first time since 1996 that the Ohio defensive line had multiple all-conference players. Pelini has also groomed two players that have been named honorable mention Freshman All-Americans by The Sporting News in the last two seasons (Hartke and Ernie Hodge). Under Pelini's tutelage, Hartke, just a sophomore, has already moved into a tie for seventh place on the Bobcats' career sack ledger.

Pelini spent the 2004 season at Minnesota State Mankato as the defensive coordinator and secondary coach. He helped lead the best turnaround in Division II in 2004 as the Mavericks, under the new coaching staff, went from a winless 2003 campaign to a 6-5 record.

Pelini was a defensive assistant at Nebraska in 2003, working with the defensive ends. His brother Bo Pelini, currently the defensive coordinator at LSU, was in charge of the defense on that Husker staff. The 2003 campaign marked the first and only time that the brothers were together on the same staff. From 2000 to 2003, Pelini was the head coach at Fitch High School in Austintown, Ohio. He rebuilt a Fitch program that had eight-straight losing seasons before his arrival. His 2002 team finished with a winning record and the program is now considered one of the top Division I programs in Northeast Ohio.

Pelini was also the head coach and athletic director at Winnetonka High School in Kansas City, Mo., from 1996 to 2000. In his first opportunity as a head coach, he took over a program that had only one winning season in its 25-year history. Pelini's 1997 team finished 8-2, and he was named the Kansas City Metro Coach of the Year.

After playing football for two years at Columbia University, Pelini transferred to Youngstown State in 1987. While working toward his bachelor's degree, Pelini got his start in coaching as an assistant at his alma mater, Cardinal Mooney High School in Youngstown.

After graduation he moved on to Kansas State where he served as a defensive graduate assistant for two years and was a restricted earnings coach during the 1991 season.

Pelini earned his bachelor's degree in English literature from Youngstown State in 1989. Pelini also received a master's degree in public relations from Kansas State in 1991 and a master's degree in education from Ohio State in 1993.

Pelini and his wife, Kelley, reside in Athens with their three children - Nicole, Danielle and Dominic.

A native of Youngstown, Ohio, Pelini's primary recruiting areas are Akron, Youngstown, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New York and Vermont.