Boise State Coach Looking Forward to Warmth

Dec. 22, 2006

BOISE, Idaho (AP) -Boise State coach Chris Petersen was feeling a different kind of pressure Friday - he had yet to buy his wife a Christmas present.

"Everybody is going shopping right after this last practice," Petersen said Friday. "We may be beating the players out the locker room to get downtown."

The team will take a break from football before heading south, where the Western Athletic Conference champion Broncos (12-0) will play Big 12 champion Oklahoma (11-2) in the Fiesta Bowl on Jan. 1 in Glendale, Ariz.

"It will be good to get a couple days here of no football, no Boise State, think about Christmas and the family and those types of things," Petersen said. "And then we'll crank it back up when we get down there."

The No. 9 Broncos will leave behind a snowy city to play No. 7 Oklahoma.

"It's perfect, you get this beautiful Christmas the way it should be and the next day (Tuesday) we'll be in some nice weather," Petersen said. "I hope those guys from Miami get some longjohns in their stockings."

Miami will face Nevada in the MPC Computers Bowl on Dec. 31 at Bronco Stadium. The distinctive blue turf of the field was invisible beneath an unblemished layer of snow Friday. The Broncos have been practicing in their indoor facility.

But Petersen said Boise State players will have to contend with distractions in Phoenix.

"I think if you go down there with the mind-set that you're going there to have a great time with the fans and be part of the festivities and all those types of things, it's a frustrating experience," he said. "Because we have practice, we have to watch tape after practice, and make the adjustments.

"So there's not enough time to do everything. I think as long as you know what you're getting yourself into, then it can be more enjoyable ... You're going to play a football game."

Petersen, in his first year as head coach at Boise State, said his busy schedule is keeping him from fretting too much about the biggest football game in the school's history.



"The good thing is I have lots of variety in my day - to meetings to (press interviews) to the practice to stuff with the players," he said. "So I stay pretty distracted most of my day. In some ways this job is better for me because I don't sit there in the film room all day and look at this stuff. That's when my blood pressure starts to go way up."

The Broncos are ranked No. 8 in the Bowl Championship Series standings, and are only the second team from a non-BCS conference to reach a BCS game, following the 2004 Utah team. It will be Oklahoma's fifth BCS appearance.

Watching film of this year's Oklahoma team, Petersen said, has him convinced his team will have to play at a high level to win.

"I don't see any weaknesses in (Oklahoma)," Petersen said. "I think it's going to come down to guys making plays."

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