Matt Edwards

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Carl Pelini denies illegal drug use; seeks reinstatement

Former Florida Atlantic coach Carl Pelini has denied using illegal drugs and is seeking reinstatement.

Former FAU coach Carl Pelini denies using illegal drugs and is seeking reinstatement. (Photo: Chris O'Meara, AP)Pelini told ESPN in a statement Thursday that he told FAU athletic director Pat Chun on Oct. 30 that he did not use illegal drugs.

According to Pelini, Chun told him that it was “irrelevant” because he was “being relieved” of his duties “for failure to supervise my staff.”

Pelini indicated Chun told him at least one staff member admitted using drugs in the coach’s presence, but Pelini denied knowledge that “any staff member was using illegal drugs.”

Pelini and defensive coordinator Pete Rekstis resigned last week. On Oct. 30, Chun told reporters both coaches admitted to using “illegal drugs,” which was in violation of their contracts. The former Owls coach says he offered to take a drug test.

Chun claims that Pelini initially agreed to take a drug test on Oct. 30 but that when informed it would be done immediately on site, Pelini then declined.

In the statement, Pelini said he “had recently become aware of a personal relationship between a staff member and a person close to the athletic department. The relationship, to my knowledge, did not involve illegal drug use or any other illegal activity.”

FAU defensive line coach Matt Edwards and Allison Stewart, who Chun called a “personal friend” of the coaches, both indicated in notarized affidavits that they observed Pelini smoking marijuana during a three-day coaches trip to Key West on Oct. 18-20.

Edwards stated he witnessed Pelini and Rekstis use cocaine within the past year. Stewart said in her affidavit that, on Oct. 20, she received a text message from Pelini admitting to drug use.

Chun also reiterated that Pelini “voluntarily resigned” and “refused to cooperate in the investigation.” Asked by ESPN about the possibility of Pelini’s reinstatement, Chun said “he resigned. I accepted his resignation.”

Pelini, hired in 2011 to replace Howard Schnellenberger was 5-15 as the Owls coach.

Photo: Chris O’Meara, AP

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The Coaching Wire: Sunday, Feb. 24, 2013

Matt Edwards has been named defensive line coach at Florida Atlantic. (Photo: Miami-Ohio)

Matt Edwards has been named defensive line coach at Florida Atlantic. (Photo: Miami-Ohio)

Former NFL receiver Colbert will be receivers coach at Georgia State

Keary Colbert will become wide receivers coach at Georgia State, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He fills the last opening on Trent Miles’ staff. Colbert played at Southern Cal and spent six years in the NFL (2004-08, ’11). He spent part of 2010 as a graduate assistant with the Trojans before resigning to pursue his NFL career again.

Florida Atlantic hires Matt Edwards as defensive line coach

Matt Edwards has joined Carl Pellini’s Florida Atlantic staff as defensive line coach. Edwards spent the past two seasons at Miami-Ohio. He coached linebackers and special teams last season, and was defensive ends coach in 2011. Before that, he spent eight seasons working at Kent State, beginning as as a graduate assistant and eventually defensive line coach.

Newland Isaac named Charleston Southern running backs, tight ends coach

Charleston Southern head coach Jamey Chadwell named Newland Isaac as the Buccaneers’ running backs and tight ends coach. A former CSU player, Isaac was on Chadwell’s staff last season at Delta State as running backs coach and spent three seasons as running backs and slot receivers with him at North Greenville.

Florida high school coach will be Youngstown State running backs coach

Eric Gallon, head coach at George Jenkins High in Lakeland, Fla., will be named running backs coach at Youngstown State. Gallon was a teammate of Youngstown State coach Eric Wolford at Kansas State.

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