Discuss 83
November 22, 2010
TexAgs.com Official Statement Regarding Carl Pelini Incident
TexAgs.com is an independent website that covers Texas A&M University and Texas A&M Athletics. TexAgs.com is not affiliated with Texas A&M University. Brandon Jones is co-owner and President/CEO of TexAgs.com. Media inquiries: media@texags.com
 
On Saturday, November 20, Brandon Jones was working as a credentialed member of the media covering the football game between the University of Nebraska and Texas A&M University at Kyle Field in College Station. Jones spent the majority of the game shooting video from the photo deck. Near the end of the game, Jones left the photo deck to shoot postgame events from the field level.
 
At the conclusion of the game, Jones entered the playing field along with other members of the media, coaches, players, and fans. Soon after he entered the field, an altercation with Nebraska Defensive Coordinator Carl Pelini unfolded.
 
Jones’ first-hand account of what transpired:
 
I was shooting video of the postgame celebration, mostly at random. My primary goal was to get footage of A&M players and coaches celebrating. For perspective, I was shooting with the camera above my head.
 
After about a minute on the field, I came upon a verbal altercation between a man I now know was Carl Pelini and another man. Frankly, at the time, I had no idea the first man was Carl Pelini. I still do not know for certain who the second man was, though we have some idea.
 
I stopped and turned my camera toward the conversation. Pelini was angry and cursing at the other man. He initially turned to walk away, then apparently noticed me shooting video of the incident. He was approximately ten feet from me when he turned around and came in my direction.
 
Since I had the camera raised over my head, I was in a particularly unfavorable position to deal with someone charging me. By instinct, I lowered my arms (and the camera). Pelini immediately grabbed my camera, now roughly at waist level in front of me. He tried to wrestle the camera away from me for several seconds. I resisted, holding onto the camera with both hands.
 
At some point in the struggle over the camera, we were face to face and I asked him, “Man, what are you doing?” He didn’t answer me, but he paused briefly. He then pulled at the camera again, but instead of taking it, he ripped two pieces off of it, both components of the camera’s eyepiece. Once he no longer had a grip on the camera itself, he tossed the pieces he pulled off into the crowd and stormed away.

 
Some additional notes about the incident:
 
Jones did not say anything to Pelini or anyone else prior to the incident. He turned the camera in Pelini’s direction, and within two seconds (documented in the video below) Pelini was lunging at him. The only words Jones ever spoke to Pelini were, “Man, what are you doing?” in the midst of the struggle.
 
Jones did not speak to or provoke a Nebraska player in any way. The still images below clarify that there was no Nebraska player in close proximity to the incident. One report suggested a player was tangled in a cord from Jones’ camera and Pelini was protecting his player. There were no cords of any kind attached to the camera.
 
In other media reports a Nebraska spokesperson and Head Coach Bo Pelini have indicated that Carl Pelini was helping a player get off the field and that he accidentally bumped into a camera man (presumably Jones) along the way. The still images make it clear that no Nebraska player was in close proximity to this incident. Further, the video and still images both confirm Jones’ account – Pelini’s attention was not on a player. He was confronting a man wearing maroon, turned to leave, then turned back toward Jones and purposefully lunged toward him to grab the camera. Jones never had any interaction whatsoever with any Nebraska football players.
 
The pieces Pelini broke off the camera were reattached and, at this point, there appears to be no permanent damage to the camera.
 
TexAgs.com’s primary concern is not the camera. One of our employees working as a credentialed member of the media was attacked unprovoked by a member of the Nebraska coaching staff.  We feel a responsibility to offer a clear and true accounting of the incident with hopes that the truth will help discourage similar future behavior.
 
Below is the video from the camera Jones was carrying, slowed down for clarity. The video does not contain audio because Jones forgot to attach the shotgun microphone to the camera when unpacking it after he arrived at field level.



Early in the video, Pelini (wearing a black cap) and the other man involved (wearing a maroon visor) can be seen in the lower right corner of the frame. Jones is shooting the crowd celebration and not those men for the first few seconds of this video. As Jones hears the confrontation, he swings the camera in their direction (the :01 mark in the video).
 
Pelini appears to notice the camera as he is turning away, then turns back toward Jones (the :08 mark in the video) and lunges toward him. This is the point at which Jones lowers the camera in reaction to Pelini’s movement in his direction. Obviously the video shows nothing else clearly.
 
At the :12 mark in the video, Pelini’s shadow is easily distinguishable as he reaches for Jones and grabs the camera. This is consistent with what is seen on the video at that point: the footage is chaotic and shaky as Pelini and Jones struggle over the still-running camera. Then the video cuts as one of the two Record/Stop buttons on the camera is pressed in the struggle.
 
Below is the real-time version of the video, which simply offers a sense of how quickly the situation unfolded.



Below is a series of photos taken from the north end zone of Kyle Field. The original photos are high resolution wide shots of the entire field. These images are cropped and zoomed for clarity. Descriptions of each photo are located below the corresponding photo.



For perspective, this is the full sized version of one of the images.





Carl Pelini is visible (wearing a black shirt) pointing back toward the man he was confronting (wearing a maroon jacket and khaki pants). Jones is visible to the right of the man Pelini is confronting wearing a black shirt and holding the camera over his head. His press credential can be seen hanging below his left arm.





Carl Pelini has turned and is lunging back toward Brandon Jones.





Carl Pelini has his left arm on Jones’ back and is attempting to wrestle away the camera with his right arm.





Carl Pelini and Jones continue to struggle for the camera.
 
The video below weaves the original video with the still images to further clarify the sequence of events:

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