After years of speculation, innuendo and rumors, Chris Petersen has finally left Boise State for a major conference job. On Friday news broke that Petersen had accepted the head coaching position at the University of Washington, where he would become one of the highest paid coaches in the Pac-12.
As we reported earlier in the week, Petersen was heavily involved in the USC coaching search for the better part of two months and had let it be known that he wanted the job. After meeting with USC’s representatives twice, both sides decided he simply wasn’t a fit for that job. Apparently fit wasn’t an issue with Washington.
Petersen will replace the departed Steve Sarkisian, who left earlier this week to take over as USC’s head coach. Sarkisian was 34-29 in five seasons at Washington, taking over a program that had gone 0-12 the year before he got there. Petersen was also a candidate for the Washington job back in 2009 when the school opted to go with Sarkisian.
The 49-year-old head coach is 92-12 in his eight seasons at Boise State and has led the team to two undefeated seasons and two BCS bowl wins. But this has been his worst season in charge of the Broncos as the team went 8-4, including a 38-6 loss to Washington in the season opener.
Still, landing Petersen is quite a coup for the Huskies.
Washington athletic director Scott Woodward issued the following statement:
“On behalf of the University of Washington and the entire Husky Nation, I am proud to welcome Chris Petersen as our new head coach. Coach Petersen’s success and record are extraordinary, but even more impressive is the man himself. His integrity, work ethic and character make him an outstanding fit and leader of our student-athletes at UW. We are thrilled and proud to call Coach Petersen a Husky.”
Petersen will reportedly not coach Boise State in its upcoming bowl game.