Though the Oregon Ducks (7-0) remain undefeated after their 62-38 victory over the Washington State Cougars (4-4) on Saturday, the game was not a personal victory for University of Oregon Defensive Coordinator Nick Aliotti.
The PAC-12 Conference reprimanded and fined Aliotti $5,000 for his post-game public comments critizing both the conduct of Washington State and the leagues officiating. The PAC-12 Conference felt the comments were a violation of policy.
Aliotti challenged Washington State coach Mike Leach’s decision to leave Cougars’ starters in the game late and throwing for two late touchdowns. Aliotti used profanity and ranted about questionable officating and labeled Washington State’s tactics as “low class”.
“The Pac-12 has specific rules that prohibit our coaches from making public comments about officiating, and this prohibition specifically includes comments that create doubts about the credibility of the Conference’s officiating program,” PAC-12 Commisioner Larry Scott said in a statement Monday night. “His comments also showed a lack of support for the Pac-12’s policies on Sportsmanship and Standards of Conduct, which call for our coaches to treat opponents with respect.”
Aliotti publicly apologized to Mike Leach, Oregon, Washington State, and the fans of both teams for his commentary. Aliotti feels that his true self was not portrayed Saturday.
“The bottom line is, I’m sorry. I’m embarrassed that I got caught up in the moment after the game. There’s no excuse, but sometimes right after the game the adrenaline is still flowing and I made a huge, human error in judgment,” said Aliotti. “I wish I could take it back, and I promise it won’t happen again.”