Palko later apologized before talking to reporters

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Pittsburgh quarterback Tyler Palko used an expletive during a live postgame interview with NBC after the Panthers upset Notre Dame (No. 24 AP) 41-38 on Saturday.

He used the vulgarity while being interviewed on the field immediately after the game.

While meeting later with reporters, Palko apologized before taking any questions.

"Before I start, I lost my composure on the field and said something in the heat of the moment," Palko said. "That's not me. That's not Tyler. It was just a heat of the moment kind of thing. I apologize to my teammates, my family and anybody that was watching."

NBC Sports announcer Tom Hammond apologized on-air after the interview was over.

"We apologize for Tyler Palko's language in the heat of the moment after the brilliant game he had," Hammond said. "Too bad it was marred by that moment."

Palko became the first player to throw five touchdown passes against the Irish and was 26-of-42 for 334 yards, with no interceptions. The Panthers won on a field goal with one second left.

Pittsburgh coach Walt Harris didn't know about Palko's comments but said it was out of character for the quarterback.

"That shocks me," Harris said.

Six weeks ago, NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. uttered a vulgarity during a postrace interview on NBC at Talladega Superspeedway.