Nebraska vs. Wisconsin, 11.15.14

Nebraska wide receiver Kenny Bell (left) shakes hands with Wisconsin cornerback Sojourn Shelton after the Husker's 59-24 loss on Saturday, Nov. 15, 2014, at Camp Randall Stadium.

Kenny Bell was forthright Tuesday in sharing his feelings about those who criticize his head coach.

The Nebraska senior wide receiver and co-captain said he doesn't mind when fans attack him via social media.

"It's when they talk about my head man," he said. "I don't like it when they talk about Bo (Pelini). That's what frustrates me."

Pelini has received ample criticism in the wake of Nebraska's 59-24 loss Saturday at Wisconsin in which Badgers running back Melvin Gordon rushed for an FBS record 408 yards.

With the loss, the Huskers (8-2, 4-2 Big Ten) became long shots to finish first in the West Division, meaning their conference-title drought likely will extend to 15 seasons.

However, "Anybody who says (Pelini) needs to go is crazy," Bell told reporters after practice. "It's literally insane. If nine wins, 10 wins isn't good enough for you, man, I don't know who you should be a fan of, honestly.

"The guy can't do much more but win. Obviously, we want conference championships. But sometimes it's not in the cards. It's not easy to come out and win every single week."

Bell acknowledged the magnitude of last week's loss, and the fact Nebraska has lost other high-profile games under Pelini.

"But these coaches, they're people," he said. "People lose sight of that. These guys have families. … And you want to take away their job because you can't watch your team win a championship.

"Give me a break. It's absurd. It's like me telling the mailman since he missed my mail a day, or dropped one in the snow, he should be fired. It blows my mind sometimes, the way people think."

Bell also takes offense with those fans who are critical of his teammates. Sure, he makes it a point to embrace the fans, he said. At the same time, he sees some hypocrisy.

"Those same people who are trying to hit me up on Twitter and be critical will be the same guy who will ask me to sign an autograph or take a picture," he said.

"So you just have to remember they care and want us to win as much as anybody else. When you put yourself in those shoes, I understand."

He also understands he can't please everybody.

"We're an 8-2 football team," he said. "That's a good football team. Did we get beat? Absolutely. We got our tails kicked.

"But I know a lot of teams that would love to be 8-2 right now, and a lot of fan bases that would love their team to be 8-2."

Reach the writer at 402-473-7440 or ssipple@journalstar.com.​


Husker columnist

Steven, a lifelong Nebraskan, newspaper enthusiast and UNL grad, joined the Journal Star in 1990 and has covered NU football since 1995.

Load comments