Boise, ID, United States (4E Sports) – Boise State has announced the hiring of hometown boy and Arkansas State coach Bryan Harsin as the team’s new head football mentor, replacing Chris Petersen.
A Boise native, the 37-year-old Harsin played quarterback for the Broncos and was an assistant there for 10 years.
Harsin worked as Boise State offensive coordinator from 2006 to 2010 before leaving to become co-offensive coordinator at Texas.
Then, he moved to Arkansas State after two years to work as head coach but the Boise State job was always on his mind. Petersen left the team Friday to work as head coach for Washington.
“We’re coming home,” Harsin said in a statement. “(My wife) Kes and I are thrilled about returning to Boise State, it’s a special place built by special people. One of the hardest decisions we ever made was leaving Boise.”
“We did that so I could become a better coach, so I could one day have the opportunity to return as head coach — that day has arrived,” he added.
Harsin was a backup quarterback for the Broncos from 1995 to 1999, originally walking on to the team. He played under Pokey Allen, Tom Mason, Houston Nutt and Dirk Koetter.
He became an offensive graduate assistant in 2001 under Dan Hawkins and was the tight ends coach from 2002 to 2005, when he worked closely with then-offensive coordinator Petersen.
A press conference has not been set. The school also has not released contract details or how it will pay Harsin’s $1.75 million buyout.
“We are extremely excited in our selection of Bryan Harsin as the next head football coach at Boise State,” Athletic Director Mark Coyle said. “Bryan is one of the top young head coaches in college football and we are thrilled to bring him back to Boise.”
“I am very excited to welcome Bryan Harsin back to Bronco Nation. His return is great news for all of us who do not want to lose momentum with the national reputation the program has achieved,” president Bob Kustra added.
Arkansas State defensive coordinator John Thompson will coach the team’s bowl game, which allows Harsin to start working for Boise State immediately.