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The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

December 4, 2013 at 9:15 PM

Chris Petersen, Doug Nussmeier apparent front-runners in UW’s coaching search

Boise State coach Chris Petersen heads off the field following the Broncos' 28-26 win over Washington in the Las Vegas Bowl last December. (Dean Rutz/The Seattle Times)

Boise State coach Chris Petersen heads off the field following the Broncos’ 28-26 win over Washington in the Las Vegas Bowl last December. (Dean Rutz/The Seattle Times)

Boise State coach Chris Petersen and Alabama offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier appear to have emerged as the top targets in Washington’s search for a new head coach, two sources with knowledge of UW’s process told The Seattle Times.

Petersen, 49, has a 92-12 record in his eighth season at Boise State, with victories in two BCS bowl games. He has been linked to a number of head-coaching jobs in recent years and reportedly was a top candidate at USC before withdrawing his name from consideration earlier this week.

On Monday, USC hired Steve Sarkisian as its head coach, luring him away from UW after five seasons. Sarkisian was 34-29 with the Huskies, including an 8-4 record this season.

Boise State played the Huskies twice in the past year, defeating UW 28-26 in the Las Vegas bowl game last December. The Huskies then opened this season with a 38-6 victory at renovated Husky Stadium, the worst loss of Petersen’s tenure.

The Broncos’ eight wins this season are the program’s fewest under Petersen. It is unclear if Petersen would leave Boise for UW. He made $2.2 million this season and has a $750,000 buyout in his contract, according to the Idaho Statesman.

Nussmeier, 42, spent three seasons at UW as Sarkisian’s offensive coordinator from 2009-11. Nussmeier, part of Alabama’s national championship last season, has expressed interest in the UW job, multiple sources said.

Nussmeier was scheduled to make $680,000 at Alabama this season.

On Tuesday, Jim Mora turned down a chance to return to UW, his alma mater, agreeing instead to a six-year extension at UCLA.

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