Boise State head football coach Chris Petersen has been named 2008-09 Bronco Coach of the Year by Bronco fans over an extremely talented and successful field. Petersen, who led Boise State to its third undefeated regular season in five years, outdistanced a field of coaches that led the school to a record eight Top 25 rankings, a record four Top 25 finishes and four conference championships.
Despite those incredible achievements by the school's other coaches, Petersen nearly received 50% of the vote over wrestling coach Greg Randall (whose team dominated the Pac-10 Conference like no other team in history and finished 12th in the nation at the National Championships), tennis coach Greg Patton (whose team finished in the Sweet Sixteen of the National Championships), women's tennis coach Mark Tichenor (whose team came within a point of unseating eight-time league champion Fresno State in the Western Athletic Conference Championship and then upset #24 Alabama in the National Championships) and gymnastics co-coaches Tina Bird and Neil Resnick (whose team won a second straight WAC title and recorded the highest Regional Championships finish in school history).
Petersen then grabbed 60% of the vote over Randall in the runoff final to gain the title of Bronco Coach of the Year.
Petersen, who was the National Coach of the Year following his team's 2007 Fiesta Bowl victory over Oklahoma, is nominated for Bronco Coach of the Year for the third year in a row. Coach Pete was honored by the WAC as Coach of the Year this past season after leading his team to its sixth conference title in the last seven years. For the second time in three seasons as the head man for the football team, Petersen guided the Broncos to an undefeated regular season campaign (12-0) before losing to TCU 17-16 in the Poinsettia Bowl. Boise State was ranked ninth in the nation prior to their bowl loss and finished the season at #12.
Under the guidance of Petersen, Boise State was a complete team that ranked among the nation's top 25 in nearly every category. The Bronco defense was second in the nation in pass efficiency defense, third in the country in scoring defense (just 12.6 points per game), fifth in interceptions (22), seventh in turnovers gained (33), 18th in sacks (34), 20th in total defense (308.15 per game) and 22nd in rushing defense (118 per game). The Boise State offense ranked 13th in the nation in passing offense (288.5 yards per game), 18th in total offense (440.85), 12th in scoring (37.62) and 11th in passing efficiency. Boise State's special teams ranked fourth in net punting (44.57 yards per punt), 14th in punt return yard defense (5.28 per return) and 20th in punt returns (12.25 per return).
11 of Petersen's Broncos were honored on the All-WAC team while quarterback Kellen Moore was named Freshman of the Year. Moore led the WAC in passing (259 of 370 for 3,264 yards, 25 touchdowns and a 161.53 efficiency rating). Wide receiver Jeremy Childs (65 catches for 741 yards and 7 TD's), cornerback Kyle Wilson (28 tackles, 10 pass breakups and a WAC-leading five interceptions), offensive lineman Andrew Woodruff (who helped Boise State to a #4 national ranking for fewest sacks allowed at just one per game), defensive lineman Ryan Winterswyk (4.5 quarterback sacks and 10 tackles for loss) and Ellis Powers (71 tackles, 49 unassisted, eight tackles for loss, 2.5 quarterback sacks, one forced fumble and two fumble recoveries for touchdowns) all made the All-WAC first team.
Wilson also made the second team as a punt returner despite leading the conference in punt returns (470 yards) and three returns for touchdowns. Joining Wilson on the second team were Moore, running back Ian Johnson (738 yards and 12 touchdowns), receiver Austin Pettis (45 receptions for 502 yards and nine TD's), defensive end Mike T. Williams (35 tackles, four sacks and six tackles for loss) and safety Jeron Johnson (84 tackles, 60 unassisted, with three fumble recoveries). Ian Johnson broke Marshall Faulk's all-time WAC rushing touchdown record with 57 career TD's.
Congratulations to Coach Pete for thoroughly outdistancing these other great coaches. The message is clear: the only way to beat Petersen is to win a national championship! Congratulations to all of these outstanding coaches--we are so very grateful to you for all you have done for Bronco fans and for the school!