"At the end of the day, I want to be here. And I want to be here if they want me here," said Pelini. "If they don't and somebody doesn't want me here – and I'm not saying Shawn does or doesn't or whatever – if they don't want me here, then I'll move on. I'll go on my way. Until that day happens, I'm going to do everything I can and everything in my power to make this football team the best football team I can."
Pelini has a record of 57-23 in six season at the helm in Lincoln, with the Huskers looking to improve to 9-3 this season with a win over Iowa. But, the head coach has come under fire from a large portion of the fan base frustrated with 14 straight years of no conference titles – Pelini has had a chance to win a few of his own, but come up short in all three contests.
"I can look myself in the mirror every night and feel good about what I've done for this program," said Pelini, who's yet to hear of a timetable when he will review the season with Director of Athletics Shawn Eichorst. "Shawn has a process he goes through. I have respect for that process. And I expect everyone else to have respect for that process. As far as I'm concerned, it's business as usual. It's a short week. I'm just concerned with football. That's all I'm worried about."
Nebraska's attempt to make a second consecutive Big Ten title game and fourth conference championship in five years ended with their loss to Michigan State two weeks ago. Ten wins used to be a gold standard in college football and with a win over Iowa and their bowl opponent, Pelini would hit the mark for the fourth time in his career.
"I expect to win them all. Our goal will remain as long as I'm head football coach here to win a conference title and a national title," said Pelini. "I'm not into looking for reasons why or make excuses or anything else. That being said, I like our football team. I think we've overcome a lot. I'm proud of this group. It's not for lack of effort or lack of toughness. Am I happy with being 8-3? No. I'd be lying if I told you I was. If you ask anybody in our locker room, they'd tell you the same thing. We have high goals and those goals will remain high and the standards will remain high as long as I'm the head football coach."
Pelini does have a long list of possible excuses for this season. A young defense. A possible season-ending injury to All-Big Ten quarterback Taylor Martinez early in the year. Injury depleted positions at offensive line and wide receiver.
"The situation is what it is and I let people decide for themselves," said Pelini. "That's for other people to decide. I'm not going to sit there and go down that road.
"Our goal is to win championships. Period. End of story. That's not going to happen this year, so our goal is the next game. Our next game is Iowa and we are going to do everything we possibly can to win that football game."