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Chris Petersen will step down as Washington Huskies head coach

Petersen led team to 2016 College Football Playoff, two Pac-12 Championships during his tenure. He’s expected to coach his last game this bowl season.

Washington Huskies head coach Chris Petersen walks the sidelines during the first half against the Oregon State Beavers at Reser Stadium. Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

Chris Petersen will step down as head coach of the University of Washington Huskies football program, he announced Monday. Petersen is set to coach in the Huskies’ upcoming bowl game, which has yet to be determined. Taking his place as head coach will be current defensive coordinator Jimmy Lake. Petersen had this to say at the press conference.

“It has been a privilege and a professional dream fulfilled to be part of this world-class institution,” Petersen said. “I will forever be grateful, honored and humbled to have had the opportunity to coach our fine young men on Montlake for these past six seasons. I thank each of them, as well as our coaches and administrative staff for the incredible commitment they’ve made to Husky football during my tenure. The football program and Husky Athletics across the board will continue to prosper – and do it the right way – with Jen Cohen’s leadership and the University administration’s commitment to excellence. I’ll be a Husky for life, but now is the right time for me to step away from my head coaching duties, and recharge.”

With high aspirations heading into the 2019 season, Washington finished with just a 7-5 record, going 4-5 during Pac-12 conference play. The Huskies lost three of five games to finish the season. Despite the down year, Petersen’s tenure at Washington was widely successful. Prior to 2019, the Huskies had three straight seasons of at least 10 wins, highlighted by making the College Football Playoff in 2016. Problem was Petersen lost all three of those bowl games. Overall, he went 54-26 over six seasons in Washington, but 1-4 in bowl games.