In the most shocking coaching move of the 2019 season, Washington coach Chris Petersen announced his resignation on Monday. Huskies athletic director Jennifer Cohen named defensive coordinator Jimmy Lake as the team’s new coach in a news release.
Petersen is one of the most successful coaches in the FBS. He has a 146-38 career record between stops at Boise State (92-12) and Washington (54-26). That .793 winning percentage is the second-highest among FBS coaches with at least 100 wins. The only FBS coach with at least 100 wins and a winning percentage above .800 is Clemson’s Dabo Swinney, who is 128-30 (.810). Nick Saban, who is 242-66, has a .791 career winning percentage.
“It has been a privilege and a professional dream fulfilled to be part of this world-class institution,” Petersen said in the team’s release. “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.”
Petersen led the Huskies to three consecutive seasons with double-digit wins from 2016-18 and a pair of Pac-12 championships in 2016 and ’18. That includes a College Football Playoff appearance in 2016 and Rose Bowl berth in 2018. The Huskies slipped to 7-5 this season.