Carl Pelini’s surprising departure from Florida Atlantic took another turn Friday, when school officials released sworn affidavits from two people — including a member of Pelini’s staff — alleging that the football coach was seen using marijuana and cocaine.
FAU assistant coach Matt Edwards told officials that he witnessed Pelini smoking marijuana in Key West, Fla., on Oct. 19, the Saturday of an off week for the Owls. That was echoed by another person, Allison Stewart, who also said she got a text message from the now-former Owls coach one day later in which he was ‘‘admitting that he uses drugs on occasion.’’
Edwards remains on the staff, and is expected to be coaching Saturday when Florida Atlantic plays host to Tulane in Boca Raton, Fla. Brian Wright has replaced Pelini as head coach, on an interim basis.
The affidavits, both of which were notarized, state that they were provided at the request of Florida Atlantic athletic director Patrick Chun ‘‘to assist him with an investigation.’’ They were released by FAU officials on Friday after a public-records request.
Pelini’s contract specified that if he used ‘‘any narcotics, drugs, or other controlled substances’’ he could be subject to firing. Pelini resigned Wednesday after being confronted with the allegations, and since he wasn’t fired the school may be able to recoup $500,000 because the coach terminated the contract himself.
Earlier this week, Chun said Pelini acknowledged use of ‘‘illegal drugs’’ before he resigned.
USC bowl eligible
Javorius Allen ran for 133 yards and three touchdowns, Marqise Lee returned from a knee injury and had five catches for 105 yards and a score, and Southern Cal beat Oregon State, 31-14, on Friday night for its first win in Corvallis, Ore., since 2004. The Trojans (6-3, 3-2 Pac-12) became bowl eligible under interim coach Ed Orgeron. Sean Mannion was picked off three times for the Beavers (6-3, 4-2) . . . Iowa reserve linebacker Marcus Collins was kicked off the team after being charged with drunken driving early Friday by Iowa City police . . . The NCAA ruled Tennessee senior defensive lineman Maurice Couch permanently ineligible following a September report that he received improper benefits. Tennessee plans to appeal.