Boise State's sponsorship contract with Nike says the world's largest sporting goods maker can reduce cash payments to the school if Petersen is no longer with the team. Petersen, who finished the season with his team ranked in the top 20 six of the past seven years, left last week after eight years at Boise State to take over Washington's football program in the Pac-12 Conference.
The eight-year agreement with Nike gives Boise State $1.08 million in products and equipment this year and an additional $40,000 in cash. Nike can reduce that at its own discretion if it decides the brand value diminished with Petersen's departure, according to the contract.
"Coach Petersen was the face of our program and the face of the university in a lot of respects because athletics is the window to the school for so many," Max Corbet, a spokesman for Boise State's athletics department, said in a telephone interview. "We've had a great relationship with Nike and, even though we've lost coach Petersen, I expect that to continue."
Boise State plays in the Mountain West Conference, which is not one of the leagues that automatically gets a bid to one of the most lucrative Bowl Championship Series postseason games. Under Petersen, the team -- known for its bright blue artificial turf home field -- qualified for two BCS games and won them both.
Corbet said the school hadn't heard from Nike about the contract. Brian Strong, a spokesman for Nike, said in a telephone interview that the company doesn't comment on its contracts with universities.
The next coach will determine the effect of Petersen's departure on the Broncos' athletic brand, said David Carter, executive director of the Sports Business Institute at the University of Southern California.
"The brand is on the ascension and coaching candidates, as well as the footwear and apparel manufacturers, realize it," Carter said in an e-mail. "Before Nike considers any financial reductions they will certainly wait to see how they may be able to leverage the program under its new leadership."
On Wednesday, Boise State hired Bryan Harsin, formerly the head coach at Arkansas State, to replace Petersen.
Petersen was 92-12 in eight years with the Broncos, helping the team develop into a top program. In addition to the BCS games, Boise State won five conference titles under Petersen.
The Broncos are 8-4 this year and unranked in the current Associated Press writers' poll. The team didn't qualify for last weekend's Mountain West title game and will play Oregon State (6-6) in the Hawaii Bowl on Dec. 24.
The Nike contract, which covers all 18 athletic programs and was extended in October, provides the school $1.08 million in products next year, $1.15 million in 2015-16 and $1.23 million over the final three years. The cash compensation also rises in the final four years of the deal, to $50,000.
The contract includes performance bonuses for the Boise State football team and both men's and women's basketball teams. There is no language that says Nike can change the terms if any Broncos team's on-field performance suffers.
More Sports Headlines
Not much goes right for Seahawks in preseason opener Stryker Phd looks to repeat in Longacres Mile Sounders could introduce 3 new players against Orlando Beat goes on: Red Sox rout Mariners 22-10 Day has 2-shot lead over Spieth going into final round of PGA AquaSox fall 4-3 to Emeralds in 12 innings. Mayhew wins again at Evergreen Speedway Ichiro unofficially passes Cobb with 4,193rd career hit
Our new comment system is not supported in IE 7. Please upgrade your browser here.