NORMAN — Noble coach Steve Barrett revived the football program in his second stint as head coach, but that run came to an end this week when he announced his decision to step down as head coach of the Bears.
Barrett, who led the Bears to playoffs in his first stint as head coach almost a decade ago, took over a moribund program four years ago and helped to bring the Bears back to being competitive.
They finished 5-5 two years ago and 4-6 this year in a season Barrett thought the Bears could have finished 7-3 if not for several key injuries, including one that sidelined quarterback Dakota Boxwell.
Barrett’s son plays football at Norman High and will be a senior next season, which is the primary reason Barrett decided to step down as head coach but continue as assistant athletic director.
“I never get to see him play because I’m always coaching on Fridays, so I’m going to be a daddy for at least a year then see if I want to go back to it or not,” Barrett said. “For now I’ll work as the assistant AD and we’ll hire a new coach.”
Barrett also will continue to run the Bears’ strength and conditioning program, an area he said has improved vastly in the past several years and will continue to do so as the Bears utilize the new training facilities completed just last year.
Noble is reviewing applicants for the head coaching job and officials expect to begin conducting interviews next week.
“I feel good about our program and the progress we made the last few years,” Barrett said. “Whoever comes in should have a good base to start with and the future’s pretty bright.”
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