In five seasons as the head of the Boise State Broncos, Chris Petersen has guided his teams to three undefeated regular seasons, four Western Athletic Conference championships (sharing the title in 2010), as well as national acclaim for what many consider to be a lesser-known school playing “up” with the big boys of college football. Petersen has been named the Paul "Bear" Bryant National Coach of the Year twice, and also boasts a winning percentage north of 90 with a record of 61-5. Along the way, Petersen has developed a name as an underdog coach who embraces being different as a means of besting his more mainstream and oftentimes better-equipped rivals.
And yet Petersen’s salary is middle of the pack when compared to the rest of the 120 Football Bowl Subdivision coaches, and his team operates with a budget that is dwarfed by the competition. So how does a school operating with such a significant handicap manage to contend in the major league of college football while writing one of the most fascinating little-guy stories in recent memory? “A lot of times people will associate bigger being better, “ Petersen says, “but sometimes that will slow you down and doesn’t help you make the best decisions."
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