Bronco Mendenhall receives extension

PROVO, Utah -- BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall has received a three-year contract extension, keeping him with the Cougars through 2013.

Mendenhall said at BYU media day Tuesday that he got his new contract after last season ended. Athletic director Tom Holmoe wanted to make an official announcement, but Mendenhall asked him not to make any public statements.

Financial terms were not disclosed, but Mendenhall said he was treated fairly.

BYU wanted to give Mendenhall a longer deal, but he felt three years was enough for now.

"There's a lot on the line going independent," Mendenhall said. "I want to be worthy of the position I have and I'm going to give everything I have for those three. It's not three and done. But I'm willing to lead the charge through independence and then re-evaluate, and that's where I currently stand. But BYU has been fantastic and proactive in everything they've done and I'm treated very fairly and I'm completely comfortable with that, more so than I've ever been in my career."

Mendenhall is going into his seventh season as head coach, having gone
56-21 with two Mountain West Conference championships and four bowl wins. He has won 10-plus games in four of his six seasons, but no question 2011 is going to be his most challenging.

BYU embarks on its first season as an independent with a loaded schedule, featuring games against Ole Miss, Texas, Utah, UCF, Oregon State and TCU. The Cougars must have success almost immediately, with all eyes watching to see whether they made the right decision in leaving the Mountain West behind.

"I would like to coach here as long as I'm wanted and as long as I feel it's where I'm supposed to be," he said. "I was invigorated and so excited by the chance to continue to move the program forward. This idea of independence, while many would have backed away from it, I'm anxious to be the coach to take it on. There's a huge amount of risk but there's also a great opportunity for reward."

Andrea Adelson covers college football for ESPN.com.