Boise State AD Gene Bleymaier working to keep Petersen, assistants with Broncos

By Brian Murphy
bmurphy@idahostatesman.com

Boise State athletic director Gene Bleymaier doesn't sleep much this time of the year. With the coaching rumor mill churning faster than ever — and Boise State coach Chris Petersen and his assistants mentioned for nearly every job opening in the country — Bleymaier is well aware of the potential for schools coming after his coaches.

"I haven’t slept in 15 years," Bleymaier joked. "It’s always there. You always know that that’s a possibility. It beats the alternative."

The Broncos' athletic director since 1981, Bleymaier has watched football head coaches Houston Nutt, Dirk Koetter and Dan Hawkins leave for jobs with BCS-conference teams. Last year, Tennessee hired defensive coordinator Justin Wilcox with a lucrative three-year contract.

And of course there is interest in Petersen, who is 60-5 as the Broncos' coach. Petersen said last week that at least one school has contacted him, but he has not had any discussions about leaving Boise State.

"My whole thing is we've got a great situation here. It's all about, just like in recruiting, being at the right fit. Who knows what happens down the road, but I know we have a good thing here and I don't take that for granted," Petersen said.

Bleymaier is aware of the interest.

"I’m sure his name is going to be mentioned every year," he said.

But his focus is on making improvements to the Broncos' program. The Broncos have an ambitious stadium expansion project under way that includes new football locker rooms.

Boise State has bumped Petersen's salary up to $1.49 million this year with built-in raises to push it to $1.89 million in 2015. But the Broncos cannot compete on a salary level with teams in the Southeastern Conference.

Florida coach Urban Meyer resigned Wednesday, prompting Petersen's name to once again be mentioned for a a high-profile job. Meyer made more than $4 million in 2010.

(Here is USA Today's awesome breakdown of what all 120 FBS head coaches were paid in 2010.)

"We need to keep improving the program and adding onto our program each year and just continuing to build it. That’s all we can do," Bleymaier said. "We don’t want to stand still. We don’t want to stay or become stagnant. We want to keep getting better and that’s our goal, that’s our priority and that’s really what we need to keep doing, keep improving and keep trying to get better."

The program is certainly at a different level than it was in 2005, when Hawkins left for Colorado and Petersen was promoted from offensive coordinator. In that span, Boise State has won two Fiesta Bowls and was in contention for another BCS berth and a spot into the national championship game until a late-season loss to Nevada. Quarterback Kellen Moore is one of four finalists for the Heisman Trophy.

"You’re into the 12th, 13th week of the season and you’re playing for a national championship and your quarterback is a Heisman Trophy candidate. That’s about all you can ask for as a coach," Bleymaier said. "We’re definitely in a different spot than we were 10 years ago."

That doesn't mean other schools are going to stop trying. Offensive coordinator Bryan Harsin said Saturday that schools have contacted him, though he said Texas was not one of them. The Longhorns
are expected to make a big push for Harsin, a Boise native and former Boise State quarterback, after the Broncos' Dec. 22 bowl game.

"When you’ve got attractive coaches, there’s always going to be temptations and always going to be people out there interested in them. There’s always that element," Bleymaier said. "Coach Pete has put together the best coaching staff in the country. Kudos to him for that. And we’re just trying to help him keep those guys."

WAC, MWC coaching salaries

This info is from the USA Today's awesome breakdown of what all 120 FBS head coaches were paid in 2010:

Gary Patterson, TCU $1.62 million

Chris Petersen, Boise State $1.48 million

Kyle Whittingham, Utah $1.17 million

Greg McMackin, Hawaii $1.10 million

Pat Hill, Fresno State $952,000

Dave Christensen, Wyoming $861,000

Mike Locksley, New Mexico $750,000

Troy Calhoun, Air Force $725,000

Steve Fairchild, Colorado State $700,000

Brady Hoke, San Diego State $675,000

Bobby Hauck, UNLV $500,000

Sonny Dykes, Louisiana Tech $450,000

Chris Ault, Nevada, $443,000

Mike MacIntyre, San Jose State $401,000

DeWayne Walker, New Mexico State $375,000

Robb Akey, Idaho $355,000

Gary Andersen, Utah State $352,000

Bronco Mendenhall, BYU Not reported

A few thoughts:

• Ault is underpaid. Locksley is overpaid.

• Hoke has already agreed to a new contract. Hill will make less under the terms of his new three-year deal.

• You can see the clear dividing line between the Mountain West and the WAC. Even the lowest-paid coaches in the Mountain West make more than the bulk of WAC coaches (Petersen, McMackin and Hill aside).

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Harsin -

Don't discount the fact that Harsin is also a Boise native and played for Capital HS. He has deep roots here. BSU is fortunate to have him this long.

No way pete leaves for Florida

Pete like it here, Urban is leaving Florida for the exact reason that Pete can continue in Boise with success. Family.

coach pete

I agree, its about family for coach pete. He wants to raise his kids here.

Wilcox

I wonder how Justin Wilcox is feeling about leaving BSU right now- his first season at Tennessee has not been all that grand, but it is just his first year.

Wilcox

This guy is wired different than most. Hes a young, talented bachelor who is confident. He has the hours to pefect his craft. I dont think he has any second thoughts about leaving Boise St. Hes in the SEC , with great athletes and the Volunteers have nowhere to go but up. Im sure hes working hard to make that team better. And my guess is that hes an NFL coordinator within 5 years.

Please stay coaching

Please stay coaching staff... Please.. In some ways it's good they lost to Nevada that way they are kept off the radar.

Most of the previous BSU

Most of the previous BSU coaches have been let go from the other conferences.. Perhaps this will keep our coaches here.

The coaching staff are well worth the price!

Keep em here! I believe if the money is respectable, they'll stay! That grass, on the other side of the fence may be greener, but it may be laced with ragweed, too!

Survey says

Winner is Alabama and Texas coaches with over 5 MILLION a year to coach.

Sad commentary when we pay coaches so much while the professors get get so much less.

When is

the last time you saw 102,000 people pay $80 each to watch some guy solve pi? When that happens, the professor will make as much as the football coach.

speaking of pie

you & i were the winners of the pizza for the utah state game. i knew you were brilliant.

Not likely to happen....

but I must admit, it would make more sense regarding priorities. I love college sports, but I must admit it is insane how much money goes into the sports and especially coaches (i.e., football and basketball). It would be nice to put things in perspective and pay the coaches a good, but reasonable wage and maybe, just maybe those 102,000 people could pay $10 to watch a game instead of $80 and take the extra $70 to donate to high school athletics, veteran's needs, hunger, etc. etc. etc. Sorry, drifted off into fantasy land there for awhile. Anyway..nice thought

Spoken like a true donkey.

Spoken like a true donkey.

?? like a true donkey?

?

HOLY CRAP A TALKING

HOLY CRAP A TALKING DONKEY!!!

WTF

When a teacher can produce the revenue that these coaches bring in, then they can ask for a probably receive a lot more pay.

Salaries

With that salary information makes one wonder if Pete isn't getting his fair share as is.

coaches pay

interesting observations from the usa today list. o'leary the crook who was employed by notre dame makes $1.3 at central florida. cal's clown tedford $2.3. duke's cutcliffe $1.6. akey $363K. the fired guy at indiana $650K, the new guy got it doubled. ault $443K. notre dame is not on the list but they are probably paying close to $10 mil annually between kelly, the fat guy & tyrone. oregon pays kelly $2.4 & oregon st pays riley $1.1. maybe the biggest surprise for me, wsu pays wulff $600K. could there be a relationship between lowest pac 2 salary and end of season standings?

Peterson doesn't have the

Peterson doesn't have the guts to leave and take on the Florida
challenge..... he is too comfortable in pleasantville were all the punch drunk taters think he's a football god........reality is that every Cup Cake State coach who has left for greener pastures has failed and so would Peterson......Cup Cake States system won't work at schools like Florida.......!

Big difference

Yeah, it is a big difference from being a mentor to students and being a warden to criminals. :)

Coach Pete likes it here because he has young men that are eager to learn and don't feel like they are God's gift to the NFL. Primo Students in Boise to Prima Donna's in SEC.

You twit

Meyer coached at Bowling Green and Utah. If you are going to make a fool out of yourself, at least do it somewhat intelligently........

i83701

Every time you submit a post here it is very negative, please feel free to go back where you came from. It must be very sad to live in your world.

He's here for the circle jerk.

one two three one two three

i83701

are you a vandal, a hater, a bengal or just angry?

Stay with us!

Please stay with us. i83701, You sound like a jealous wannabe.

83701 is just bitter

I love how these bitter dudes cant even spell his name right. Makes it so I cant even read their post. Just no credibility.

Handsome you left out 2, I say 2...'s

.

GADS! pic

Did you have to post Bleymaiers' pic - he's gettin' old.

It's no secret in Big 10

It's no secret in Big 10 country that the team that contacted Petersen was Minnesota. But who in their right mind would take that job? Like I said on the other thread, there's no way this job doesn't at least spark his interest. Besides a top-tier Pac-10 program (ie Stanford, USC or Oregon) this one has to at least worry you all a bit. Univ of Florida is one of the top 5 coaching positions in the country. They're the top school in prime recruiting country. He would pretty much have the pick of the litter in regards to recruits plus they can throw huge salary numbers at him. Even though I think Mullen is definitely the front-runner, they have to reach out to him. And furthermore, if Mullen does get the Florida job, you can bet that MSU comes calling as his replacement.

relevant points

perhaps but petersen has consistently stated that he is not driven by a dollar bill. asked earlier this year by erin andrews(i'd like to interview her)why he hadn't pursued some of the big jobs, petersen gave an answer that may provide some insight. "i think this is the big job." i doubt if coach petersen could develop a true interest in an sec job knowing that shady tactics are the norm.

I'd be surprised

if Pete has any interest in Florida. But I'll be sweating profusely if Michigan fires RichRod and somehow pry's Harbugh from Stanford.

Not sayin, Just sayin.

Stanford

That is a pretty daunting scenario for BSU.

The Michigan AD is going to be under enormous pressure from boosters after the bowl season to make a run at Harbaugh. Former quarterback there, played for Bo, runs a traditional Big 10 offense - he is quite literally the perfect fit for that job. And I think he would leave Stanford after this year if he got that offer.

Likewise, Petersen would be a great fit in Palo Alto.

Even if Michigan fails to Bag Harbaugh...

the saga ain't over. Every 49er fan knows the Yorks want Harbaugh AND Andrew Luck..

just sayin...

any school have deeper pockets than Stanford?

Their AD is already makin noise about wanting to "grow" Harbaughs pay..immediately...

Your right WIZ

Hes an NFL guy. If no Michigan, here comes the Niners. A lot will depend on the "lockout" situation but it eventually gets resolved.

JL..It's why the Yorks Haven't moved Already..

LOckout means paying coaches anyway..Why can Singletary, hook a new guy, then pay him too? There's also noise they want Mike S to stay as a DC...plus a LUCK announcement. Does LUck graduate? Did he redshirt and has he earned enough to graduate and come out in the draft?

yes my friend

Hes leaving alright. 1st pick easily in the NFL draft.

Read today

That they given a new package to Harbaugh to look over.

How'd you like to Harbaugh and have

Stanford
Michigan
Florida
Denver Bronco's
San Francisco 49er's
Minnesota Vikings

All texting sweet nothings to you......

LOL He11 tfunk...

can I be the auctioneer and have the normal cut?

Nothing like being

the prettiest girl left without a date to the prom.

Petersen won't be going anywhere....

1)his job security is WAY BETTER at BSU than at a larger school, just ask Coach Hawkins, 2) he can compete for a BCS bowl year after year after year after year after year after year...sorry, you get the point, and 3)the money he makes here allows him to live like a king and even if he made more money elsewhere, there is a good chance that the cost of living at other places would level out the salary issue pretty well. As for the assistant coaches, that's a different matter. Lastly, even if Petersen goes somewhere else BSU will be okay if they stick with their pattern of replacing the coach with someone from the program who will continue the program. For expamle, if Petersen left and Harsin took over things would be fine for BSU. But again, Petersen is not going anywhere.

Except remember...

Coach Pete and his staff just got a recent verbal commitment from an all american kicker who will be the higest rated prospect to ever sign at Boise State. This kid was originally looking at Florida but couldn't get them to commit to a scolarship. Why would Pete need to go to Florida ... its sure not for lack of interest by talented players?

he is a kicker come on

he is a kicker come on

right, he's a kicker

I mean come on man, when has a kicker ever won or lost..... a crap!

I can certainly see coach

I can certainly see coach Petersen staying at least one more year at BSU with Kellen finishing out his senior year here at Boise. And don't forget Kirby too. It's a close nit family that money CANNOT buy..

3 to 1

Coach Pete leaves after this season.

Hey its c8harmony

How do we get in with those odds of yours?

Remember, this is the same guy that had a dream that the vandals beat the Broncos this summer and predicted it on here it would happen! We have to listen to him guys!!

I had a Dream

LOL. the dream really was true the outcome wasn't, thank god. Actually, I think it will be after next year when Kellen is gone that Coach Pete will leave. Could be this year though. "I gotta feeling, a feeling deep inside - oh yea"

Cr8

You were just a few weeks off. Like Marie Lavareu who VNDL still keeps hidden in his basement.

Miss St.

Already tried that before Mullen was hired. In fact, numerous reports had Pete leaving for the job. By reports, I mean lame blog sites run by nerds who have their fantasys twisted.

I am not remotely worried. He isnt leaving for Florida and definitely not Stanford. Harbaugh will leave soon enough. But Coach Petersen wants to be at a university that wants to spend cash on athletics. Cal could be a possibility but even Tedford agrees they dont open their pocketbook to football like they should. Sorry to disappoint all those fans out there hoping Pete leaves so the Broncos become mediocre. Or even better, to disappoint fans of bigger conferences and teams that think Petersen will leave. Hes not like Coach Hawk. He doesnt think that way. There might be, at this time, only 3 jobs in America Pete would leave Boise for.

In defense of Coach Hawk...

I don't think he would have stayed if BSU would have been divying up the salary they are currently paying Coach Pete. Also, if BSU were paying Coach Pete what they paid Coach Hawk, Coach Koetter, Coach Nutt, etc.; then Coach Pete would have already been on a plane to his next coaching job.