Nebraska fires AD Pederson

LINCOLN, NEBRASKA (TICKER) —Nebraska has fired athletic director Steve Pederson.

The move comes two days after the Conhuskers suffered a 45-14 defeat to Oklahoma State, their worst home loss since 1958.

“The University of Nebraska has been an incredibly special place to my family and me for more than three decades,” Pederson said. “Whether it was during my time as a Nebraska student, staff member or athletic director, I have always been tremendously proud to call myself a Cornhusker.”

Pederson was named Nebraska’s athletic director in January of 2003. He was dismissed even though his contract was renewed for five years in July.

“We are of course disappointed in the direction of our football program,” Nebraska chancellor Harvey Perlman told the newspaper. “I think only new leadership can objectively assess the state of our program.”

Pederson angered Nebraska fans when he fired the popular Frank Solich following a 9-3 season in 2003.

He bought in former Oakland Raiders coach Bill Callahan, who has experienced only moderate success in a program used to winning. The Cornhuskers are 26-18 in three-plus seasons under Callahan, including a 4-3 mark this year.

Nebraska did win the Big North title last year with a 9-5 record before losing to Oklahoma in the conference championship game and falling to Auburn in the Cotton Bowl.

Callahan received a five-year extension last month.