Boise State, Petersen in contract extension talks

For those fearing that Boise State coach Chris Petersen was looking for the next big thing after years of success at Boise State might be able to breath easier for a little while.

The Idaho Statesman is reporting Boise State and Petersen are in negotiations for a contract extension. Petersen last received a contract extension in 2007 after he took the Broncos to the Fiesta Bowl. It appears as thought history is repeating itself.

According to the Statesman, the 2007 deal put Petersen’s salary at $850,000, but performance-based raises and incentives, which he already has met, have bumped that number to $1,324,053 for 2010.

According to a survey done by USA Today in November, Boise State’s football coaching was the highest paid of the nonautomatic qualifying schools. Actually, the Broncos’ coaching staff is likely the third-highest paid nonautomatic qualifying coaching staffs behind TCU and SMU, which didn’t report its salaries because they are private schools.

TCU negotiated an extension and a raise for coach Gary Patterson and his staff at the end of the regular season. Patterson is rumored to be making more than $2 million per year, which would put him among the highest-paid coaches in the country.

SMU coach June Jones, who led the Mustangs to a seven-win regular season and is taking them to their first bowl game since 1984, also received an undisclosed contract extension after the regular season. It was rumored he was making $2 million before the extension.

Petersen’s current contract is set to expire in 2010 and the school tabled talks of a contract extension last season because of the economy. Currently, Petersen is the lowest-paid coach among the 10 teams playing in BCS bowls this year, but Boise State doesn’t have the funds to keep up with the Joneses. That’s part of the reason why the school decided to sell stock in its athletic department the general public and part of the reason the school is looking for a $1 million guarantee game for the 2011 schedule and beyond.

By the end of this season, Petersen will earn bonuses of either $192,720 or $217,720 (with a top-10 finish) for the Broncos' on-field performance in 2009. He also gets a 19 percent raise for the second straight year for winning at least 12 games.

According to the Statesman, Petersen's assistants also are due bonuses and raises.