Boise State head coach Chris Petersen understands the dance by now. Near the end of every season, he will undoubtedly get linked to multiple high-profile coaching vacancies around the country. He continues to do a terrific job shooting them down.
After leading the Broncos to another solid season–9-2 heading into their regular-season finale against Nevada on Saturday–Petersen's name has been tossed around the rumor mill yet again. For good reason, of course. He's a top-notch coach.
Petersen seems genuinely content with his current job status, though. Even as programs ranging from the Pac-12 to the vaunted SEC are linked to him, he remains committed to the program he helped turn into a powerhouse over the past decade.
His latest public denial came on Monday. When asked about the latest batch of speculation, he simply joked about how long it took for the media to ask him about it, according to the Associated Press (h/t ESPN):
"Twenty-two minutes, that's better than I thought," Petersen said. "It's just rumors. That's all I really want to say about this, and I say it every year."
It takes an ultra-smart coach to turn a little-known program like Boise State into an annual BCS contender. Petersen knows how the game works, and he plays it better than most coaches.
He isn't going to let rumors derail his current situation, which is a good one. He agreed to a five-year contract extension at the beginning of the year, can avoid the intense scrutiny of a storied program and wins a boatload of games.
Petersen understands he has built a good program up in Idaho. The Broncos have won more than 90 percent of their games since he took over and have appeared in a couple marquee bowl games.
He also knows the entire system has the potential to crumble at the first sign he might be getting ready to leave. So he's become the master of shooting down rumors right away, before they have a chance to take on a life of their own.
Getting talented recruits to choose Boise State over more traditional college football powers is a tough task to begin with. If the players aren't confident in his job status, it becomes nearly impossible. Clarity is key.
It won't stop the rumors. Those are going to continue until the end of time because they make for a good debate, but Petersen isn't going to let them change his outlook. He shows that a couple times per year when asked to update his status–which doesn't change.
Petersen remains head coach of the Broncos and he doesn't seem interested in changing that title.