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Car crash kills former NU center Pelini

Courtesy Photo / Huskers.com

News Channel Nebraska

A former Husker offensive lineman has died in a crash in Indiana.

31-year-old Mark Pelini, the nephew of former Nebraska football coach Bo Pelini, was one of three people killed in a two-vehicle accident on the Indiana Toll Road in St. Joseph County on Sunday night. Two other people remain hospitalized.

According to Indiana State Police, an SUV driven by Pelini struck a deer, causing it to then cross the center median and collide with a pickup truck.

Both Pelini and his passenger, 31-year-old Jillian Marian, died at the scene. Both Pelini and Marian lived in Ohio.

The front seat passenger in the pickup, 57-year-old Jane Beecher of Pennsylvania, also died in the crash. The driver and another passenger in the pickup remain in the hospital.

The accident remains under investigation.

Pelini came to Lincoln from Cardinal Mooney High School in Youngstown, Ohio. He played in 31 career games for the Huskers, starting a total of 13 games for the Huskers at center.

Pelini held down the middle of the Nebraska offensive line throughout the 2014 season, starting the first 11 games. Pelini suffered a season-ending ankle injury early on Senior Day against Minnesota.

Pelini and his offensive line teammates were a key part of a Nebraska offense that ranked among the top 20 units nationally in scoring and rushing offense. The group up front powered senior running back Ameer Abdullah’s record-setting season, as he became NU’s all-time leader in all-purpose yards, while ranking second in career rushing yards.

He was an Academic All-Big Ten performer in his final three seasons at Nebraska.

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