How bad did Chris Petersen either not want to leave Boise or go to Los Angeles? He looked several million reasons squarely in the eye — and didn’t blink and, most importantly for his current employer, didn’t budge.
Earlier Friday, it was reported that Petersen had said, in essence, “thanks to no thanks” to the opportunity to replace Rick Neuheisel at UCLA. The Los Angeles Times is now reporting that Petersen was offered a contract by the Bruins that would’ve paid the Boise State head coach close to $4 million annually.
Additionally, and perhaps more importantly to Petersen, the salary pool for his coaching staff would’ve been in the SEC-like neighborhood of $3 million a year.
To put those figures into the proper perspective, Petersen will make $1.525 in guaranteed compensation this season and his current contract, with annual $100,000 increases, will max out at just over $1.9 million in 2015. The salary pool for his assistants is somewhere just shy of $2 million.
And yet, as he has multiple times over the past several years, Petersen opted not to pursue an opportunity at a “bigger” program and stay right where he’s been for the past 11 seasons.
The Times writes that Petersen turned down the latest offer by the Bruins — he was pursued when the job last came open following the 2007 season — “because of lifestyle reasons.” Or, as Brian Murphy of the Idaho Statesman put it on Twitter, “If/when Chris Petersen leaves Boise State, it will be more about fit than money.”
One of these days, people will actually start to understand that about Petersen.