Huskies Insider Blog

Morning links: A look at Chris Petersen’s return to Boise State, a new season of The Pursuit, and more

As I drove across the I-90 bridge last night, rain falling on my windshield while I listened to Chris Petersen’s weekly radio show, it felt, for the first time this year, like football season. Guessing that feeling may heighten over the next three days leading up to Washington’s season opener at Boise State on Friday night.

And since it is that time of year again, we’re back with our morning links post, which you can expect once more on a daily basis throughout the season. You can probably also expect a few more episodes of Season 2 of “The Pursuit,” the first installment of which is posted above.

Here we go:

--- Our story in today’s newspaper examines the strong ties between Petersen, his staff at UW and Boise State’s current staff under coach Bryan Harsin. An excerpt:

Asked this week to describe what that atmosphere might be like, Petersen quipped: “I think when a game is billed as the biggest game in school history, I don’t think you have to do a lot of describing.”

That might be overselling it a bit, given that during Petersen’s tenure as head coach the Broncos twice went undefeated and won two BCS bowl games (and won another bowl game last season after he left).

But his point stands: this is a big one. It’s unique, too. Coaches leave for new jobs all the time, but it’s not often that a coach leaves for a different school in a different conference and then winds up facing his old team just two years later. Especially after leading the old team to 92 wins in eight seasons.

And it’s not just weird for Petersen. Eight of UW’s nine assistant coaches worked with him at Boise, and six of them were there during Petersen’s final season.

Plus, Bryan Harsin, Boise State’s second-year head coach, was Petersen’s offensive coordinator at Boise for five years, and five of Harsin’s assistants — Marcel Yates, Andy Avalos, Julius Brown, Scott Huff and Lee Marks — either worked or played for Petersen.

Because of those connections, Pete Kwiatkowski, UW’s defensive coordinator, doesn’t try to conceal this game’s significance. He played at Boise. He coached at Boise. He’s in Boise State University’s Athletic Hall of Fame.

“It’s not just another game,” he said. “Because a lot of those guys we recruited, and I went there, and I have a lot of friends that went there. … So from that standpoint, it’s not another game for me. But at the end of the day, it is another game, because we’ve got to go out there and we’re going to play our tails off and compete and see what happens.”

--- And here’s our notebook in today’s paper leading with the Huskies’ plan to rotate more defensive linemen this season.

--- The Sacramento Bee ponders whether Jake Browning might start at quarterback for the Huskies on Friday.

--- The Olympian’s new preps writer, Lauren Smith, has this story about Capital High kicker Van Soderberg, who has accepted a scholarship offer to play for the Huskies.

--- Dave Southorn looks at the list of Huskies who would have signed with Boise State if not for Petersen’s departure.

--- Huskies safety Brian Clay is expected to make his first career start in front of his ailing mother, who suffers from multiple sclerosis.

--- Some Boise State students had problems yesterday purchasing tickets for Friday’s game through the school’s website.

--- UW’s 38-6 victory over Boise State in the 2013 season opener -- the first game of Petersen’s final season in Boise -- left a “bad taste” for the BSU players who remember it.

--- Some more notes from Boise.

--- And here’s a UW scouting report from the Boise perspective.

Around the Pac-12 ...

--- Bad news for UCLA cornerback and kick returner Ishmael Adams, who was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of robbery.

--- USC athletic director Pat Haden shared his decision-making process regarding Steve Sarkisian’s incident at the Salute to Troy event.

--- Is this the year California finally breaks through?

--- Arizona quarterback Anu Solomon is “ready to soar” as a sophomore.

--- Arizona State coach Todd Graham praised quarterback Mike Bercovici’s resolve.

--- A first look at Washington State’s season opener against Portland State.

--- Interesting look here at some of Oregon’s self-reported secondary violations of some of the NCAA’s sillier rules.

--- UW isn’t the only school being coy about the identity of its starting quarterback.

--- Utah, meanwhile, knows that its starting quarterback is Travis Wilson, and Travis Wilson feels confident heading into the Utes’ season opener against Michigan.

Also, I was a guest on KJR 950 AM yesterday with Jason Puckett, and you can give that a listen below.