By Chadd Cripe
© 2011 Idaho Statesman
Boise State senior quarterback Kellen Moore said Wednesday that it was difficult for him to lose coach and friend Bryan Harsin to Texas but he expects the change to help him.
Harsin, the Broncos’ offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach the past five years, left in January to become the co-offensive coordinator at Texas.
Former wide receivers coach Brent Pease replaced Harsin as Moore’s mentor.
Boise State opened spring practice Monday and Moore talked to the media Wednesday for the first time since the Broncos’ MAACO Bowl Las Vegas triumph in December.
“Obviously a very tough situation just because it’s the guy you’ve been working with for four years,” Moore said of Harsin’s departure. “We weren’t necessarily just in the coach-player relationship. It probably went a little further than that.”
In January, Harsin said leaving Moore was “tremendously hard.”
“Kellen is a special person and a special player and those guys don’t come around a lot with all those things combined,” Harsin said. “That was very difficult, and not just him — all the players there.”
Pease is a former college and NFL quarterback. He has spent most of his career coaching that position but was the wide receivers coach under Harsin.
“It’s probably the best transition I could possibly have,” Moore said. “He’s very comfortable. He understands the system. It’s just probably different ways of approaching it, but at the end of the day we’re still doing the same stuff, we’re still trying to get the same goals accomplished and I think it’s been good.
“… For me it’s probably good just because I’ve been with Hars for four years. We’re on the same page. We understood each other. We’ve kind of been doing the same thing for a little while. It always kind of sparks you when you’ve got something different.”
Moore led the nation in pass efficiency last season with 35 touchdown passes and six interceptions. He’s 38-2 in his college career and a returning Heisman Trophy finalist.
The New York Times recently did a Q&A with Texas coach Mack Brown, in which Brown talked extensively about his respect for the Broncos offense and decision to hire Harsin. Read it here.
Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops and several members of his coaching staff attended the Broncos' practice Wednesday. The Sooners coaches are visiting for two days. Boise State coaches often visit other schools but rarely have a contingent of coaches from another school visit them.
Boise State coach Chris Petersen visited Oklahoma last spring. The schools will forever be linked by their 2007 Fiesta Bowl classic, won by the Broncos.
Fewer than 100 tickets remain for “An Evening with Coach Pete,” the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year dinner. The event is March 19 at the Boise Centre on The Grove. Tickets are $50 at idahotickets.com. The event can accommodate about 800 people.