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Family matter: Washington's Pettis faces cousin's alma mater

BOISE -- University of Washington wide receiver Dante Pettis knows a thing or two about Boise State football.

A bit of the Broncos runs through his family's blood.

Dante's cousin, Austin Pettis, was a star wide receiver for Boise State from 2007-2010. In his time with the Broncos, Pettis reeled in 229 receptions for 2,838 yards and 39 touchdowns. All three were first or second on the school's all-time list at the time of his graduation.

After four seasons with the St. Louis Rams, Austin Pettis now plays for the San Diego Chargers. But, that doesn't mean he isn't still invested in the Broncos.

That's what makes Friday's season opener between Washington and Boise State interesting for the Pettis family.

"I actually haven't talked to Austin about it yet," said Dante Pettis on Tuesday. "I'll probably text him sometime this week. Talk a little smack, you know."

Dante Pettis never had a chance to watch his cousin play in Boise, although he saw Austin suit up a couple of times when the Broncos played at Fresno St. and when they faced Texas Christian in the 2008 Poinsettia Bowl in San Diego.

Dante Pettis, the son of former Major League Baseball player Gary Pettis, starred at Junipero Serra High School in San Mateo, California. One of the top wide receiver recruits in the country, Pettis was offered a scholarship to several schools, including Boise State.

"They offered me," said Pettis, who is now a sophomore at Washington. "I was thinking about it, but ultimately coach Pete -- nothing against those guys -- I just liked coach Pete."

Huskies head coach Chris Petersen (aka "coach Pete") is in his second season at Washington. Before his time with the Huskies, Petersen guided Boise State from 2006-2013. Austin Pettis was recruited by Petersen, and played for him in Boise.

How times have changed.

Petersen was the difference maker in Dante Pettis' decision to overlook Boise State and play for the Huskies.

"I kind of fell in love with his system and everything, so it was ultimately him," said Pettis.

Now the two worlds are set to collide. Washington meets Boise State on Friday at Albertsons Stadium.

Kickoff between the Huskies and Broncos is set for 7:15 p.m. (PT). You can the game live on ESPN, or listen to the action on KOMO News Radio.

For all the latest on the Huskies in Boise, follow KOMO photographer Doug Pigsley and me on Twitter, and watch for our live reports on KOMO News.

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