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Bo Pelini after Iowa loss: 'If they want to fire me, go ahead'

Nebraska lost its fourth game of the season on Friday, the sixth time in a row Bo Pelini's team has reached that mark. And that was just the beginning.

Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

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Bo Pelini entered Friday needing a win against Iowa to assure himself of another season as the Huskers' head coach. While a loss to his team's designated Thanksgiving week rival wouldn't assure him of a termination, a 38-17 blowout loss coupled with multiple instances of Pelini's apparent quick temper could make his exit just a little bit more likely.

And while a terse halftime exchange with ESPN's sideline reporter followed by a personal foul for throwing his hat at an official do seem to fit that bill, those dustups only set the stage for Pelini's postgame. Here he is on that penalty:

And when discussion turned to his hot-seat status, Pelini remained fiery:

All this from a coach who's biggest setback of the year before Friday was an unearthed audio recording of him ranting about fans after a 2011 game. That was defensible in context, especially since it looked to have been leaked by a disgruntled Nebraska fan, but in light of his other sideline blowups?

A loss in a big game is frustrating for any coach, especially one carrying the weight of a proud program's expectations. But if Pelini's letting his emotions flow this freely, it's easy to think he's sensing his time in Lincoln is nearly done anyway.

For what it's worth, players still have his back:

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