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Chris Petersen    

Head Football Coach at Boise State University

Chris Petersen is currently the head coach at Boise State University, a position he has held since the 2006 season. Petersen has guided the Broncos football team to two BCS bowl wins, in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl and the 2010 Fiesta Bowl. He is the first and only two-time winner of the Paul "Bear" Bryant Award, which he won in 2006 and 2009. He also won the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Award in 2010.

Petersen began his coaching career in 1987 as the head freshman coach at UC Davis, his alma mater, under hall of fame coach Jim Sochor. In 1989 he became the receivers coach for the varsity, departing in 1992 to become the quarterbacks coach at Pittsburgh. While at Pittsburgh, he coached QB Alex Van Pelt to a season where he threw for over 3,100 yards with 20 TD.

He moved back west in 1993 to coach the quarterbacks at Portland State under Tim Walsh; the Vikings advanced to the Division II playoffs in both 1993 and 1994. Peterson moved over to Oregon in 1995 as the receivers coach, and spent six years as an assistant for the Ducks under head coach Mike Bellotti. In 1996, WR Cristin McLeMore topped 1,000 yards receiving. In 1997, WR Pat Johnson topped 1,000 yards. In 1998, WRs Damon Griffin and Tony Hartley both topped 1,000 yards on the year. In 2001, he became the offensive coordinator at Boise State under first-year head coach Dan Hawkins.

Petersen was promoted to head coach at Boise State on December 16, 2005, succeeding Hawkins, who left for Colorado. Petersen had served as offensive coordinator at Boise State for five seasons and was twice nominated for the Broyles Award, given to the nation's best assistant coach. In his first year as head coach, Petersen led the Broncos to an undefeated regular season and the program's first ever BCS bowl game berth. He became the fourth rookie head coach to lead a team to a BCS bowl game. Boise State was the only undefeated team in Division I FBS for the 2006 season.

The Broncos defeated Big 12 Champion Oklahoma in the Fiesta Bowl as only the second non-BCS conference school to play in a BCS bowl, after Utah in 2004.

On February 22, 2007, the Idaho State Board of Education approved a new contract for Petersen, paying him $4.25 million for five years, or $850,000 per year. On January 1, 2010, after leading Boise State to another undefeated regular season, Petersen was rewarded with a new five-year contract extension: $8 million over the course of the five-year deal, or $1.6 million per year.

Petersen and his wife, Barbara, are the parents of two sons, Jack and Sam. His father, Ron Petersen, still lives in Yuba City.


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