Quote to live by:

"Failure to prepare is preparing to fail."

Assistant Coach


Gavin Petersen, a 15-year veteran of NCAA Division I coaching, begins his third season at Utah and works with the post players, while coordinating Utah’s defense.

In 2016-17, Petersen coached the Utah defense to a No. 24 ranking nationally in defensive rebounds per game (28.0), finishing in the top-half of the conference in scoring defense, field goal percentage defense, blocked shots, defensive rebounds and blocked shots. The Utes were led in blocks by All-Pac-12 selection Emily Potter, who set a new single-season record at Utah in blocks (89) under the direction of Petersen.

Potter was named to the Pac-12 All-Conference team for the second consecutive season and earned All-Defensive Team honors after ranking No. 14 in the NCAA in blocked shots, leading the league in swats and finishing the season ranked No. 5 in defensive rebounds (5.45 pg).

Prior to coming to Utah, Petersen spent the previous two seasons as an assistant to Lynne Roberts at the University of the Pacific, helping the Tigers to consecutive WNIT appearances. Petersen has also served as an assistant coach at Hawai'i (twice), Idaho and Idaho State, helping eight teams reach the postseason.

Before joining the staff at Pacific, Petersen spent two seasons in his second stint as an associate head coach and assistant coach at Hawai'i. He helped the Rainbow Wahine reach the WNIT in 2012-13, the school's first postseason trip in 10 years.

From 2008-11, Petersen was the associate head coach at Idaho, where he aided in the turnaround of the Vandals' program in the Western Athletic Conference. Idaho made just its third NCAA Division I postseason trip in program history with a Women's Basketball Invitational appearance in 2011.

A native of Honolulu, Hawai'i, Petersen earned his bachelor's degree in justice administration at Hawai'i Pacific in 1999 before obtaining a master's in kinesiology and leisure science degree from the Hawai'i in 2009.

Petersen and his wife, Karen (Piers), have two daughters, Breagh born in 2011, and Brooklyn born in 2013. Karen coached at Sacramento State (2001-05) and Idaho (2008-11).