CBS News and Sports Illustrated have combined their resources to perform an expose on college football players with legal problems. They focused on last season's preseason Top 25, and found that Nebraska ranked in a tie for 19th place in terms of players with a police record with four. That's actually on the low end. Leading the list are the Pitt Panthers with 22 players having had some sort of police issues. Iowa tied with Arkansas for second with 18. Boise State and Penn State tied for fourth with 16.
Working off a quick Google search and my own recollection, I believe Nebraska's claim to infamy on this list is primarily DUI offenses by Niles Paul, Rickey Thenarse, and Baker Steinkuhler. The fourth may be Ben Cotton's minor-in-possession charge (later dropped) from 2009. Not to excuse those offenses, but Nebraska's record actually looks good in comparison. I do believe that Bo Pelini takes these issues seriously and has improved Nebraska's off-the-field record during his tenure. Not resolved the problem, obviously, but the number and seriousness of incidents has decreased as of late.The team report was led by SI's Jeff Benedict, Andy Staples, and Armen Keteyian of CBS News. You may remember Keteyian, who has bounced from sideline reporter for NFL games to "Chief Investigative Reporter" for CBS News, as the author of "Big Red Confidential", an attempt to portray Tom Osborne as operating a shady program back in the 80's. The story never went anywhere, especially once Osborne discredited Keteyian's investigation.
I couldn't help but be amused by the name of the school that led the list, and the man who's been in charge of that athletic department for the last three-plus years. (Heck, they had to fire their new head coach after only two weeks after he had been charged with assault himself.) Nebraska's "Enemy of the State" told reporters today that the situation was "unacceptable" and he'll "get this fixed."
"Certainly, this was an unusual year because we had so many high-profile incidents in such a short period of time."