The opening games of the season are one of the most exciting and anticipated events in college football. The first week of college football raises the pulse as the season begins to get underway.
In most quarters, anyway.
Chris Petersen on opening vs. Boise: "I’m not looking forward to it because I recruited so many of those kids"— Brett McMurphy (@McMurphyESPN) July 29, 2015
That tweet indicates that the anticipation of the season opener is not necessarily a universial feeling. Washington Huskies head coach Chris Petersen is not very enthusiastic about returning to the Blue Turf and taking on the team he coached until December 2013. That was when he accepted the more prestigious job at Washington. "I’m not looking forward to it because I recruited so many of those kids," Petersen said during a recent interview with ESPN. He had some ideas about what he can expect and what his "homecoming" reception will be from the Boise State fans.
"They’re fans, they’re gonna boo me," Petersen said of the Broncos faithful.
With all due respect for Coach Pete he needs to get over himself. It’s not all about him. Everyone might think he is playing against his old team with his words reflecting the impression he is facing a team he recruited and built, but such is not entirely the case. For starters check out the Broncos’ starting lineup. Most of those kids never had a ball snapped under the former Boise State coach and a good many never even shared a bench with those that did. Besides, Petersen took a number of the new recruits with him to Washington along with almost the entire coaching staff allowing for a complete overhaul of the Broncos.
Head coach Bryan Harsin’s Fiesta Bowl champions from last season, and the newer 2015 Broncos team Petersen will face this year are not cut from the same cloth as the 2013 program that led Petersen to an 8-5 record in his last season at Boise State. Gone is nearly every starter from that team and gone also is that dummied-down playbook that went right into the trash when Harsin took over.
So, if there is any booing, it won’t be against Coach Pete who left a wonderful legacy at Boise State. Instead, it will be against the Washington Huskies for the booing the Broncos received in Seattle and the humiliating beat down they suffered on Puget Sound in 2013. It was Chris Petersen’s Broncos that gave that game up to the Huskies by a score of 38-6 in one of the most stunning losses of Chris Petersen's tenure. So it’s about payback, not the coach.
The Broncos have moved on, and so should Coach Pete. For Boise State fans it’s the Bryan Harsin Era now.