Brett Barnes Leads Norman North Back into the Breach – Presented by Insurica


Brett Barnes has enjoyed his first two seasons at Norman North and is looking forward to seeing what the future holds for his football team.

VYPE: Since taking over as head coach your teams have performed extremely well and have come close to being crowned champions. What has you most excited about this upcoming season? 

Barnes: We are just excited to build off the things we have done the past few years.  Even though we lost a large group of seniors, we still have a great group of guys that played key roles in our success and some that are ready to step into an even bigger role than they played last year. Each season is its own journey and this group is ready and excited for what’s ahead.

VYPE: Can the stranglehold Union and Jenks have had on 6A be broken and what will it take to bring a title to the West side? 

Barnes: Those two programs have set the bar for high school football in the state of Oklahoma for many years now. My opinion or anybody else’s for that matter won’t make any difference, somebody just has to go beat them when it matters most to make it happen. All we can control is to try and be the best version of ourselves and learn from our experiences to keep giving us the opportunity to take those chances.

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VYPE: What additions have you made to the coaching staff this season if any? 

Barnes: We have made several key additions to our staff this off-season, but also was able to retain all but one from last season. I believe this as good of a staff as we’ve had here and I am truly blessed to be surrounded by such quality guys that are passionate about our kids and the work they do here.

VYPE: Coaching D1 players is nothing new to you, but what about the dynamic of coaching boys that have a D1 dad like Bob Stoops? Do you think he may come around more now that he’s no longer the head coach at Oklahoma? 

Barnes: First off, it has been great having the opportunity to coach players like Drake and Isaac. They have as good a work ethic and competitiveness as anybody that has ever come through here. They are great teammates and have raised the level for many of our athletes in their time at Norman North. Coach Stoops and his wife Carol have been great supporters of what our staff is doing here at North and really has been a great experience getting to know them. I even had their daughter Mackie in class, and they are all just a wonderful family. Coach Stoops is clearly one of the best in the business all time and I’ve been fortunate to have opportunities to observe his practices and the way he communicates and cares for the players and people around him, which was evidenced in the way he left the program. There have been plenty of things to learn from and even though I’m sure he still has some responsibility with the university we would certainly love to have him around as much as he possibly could be. I figured I would give him a chance to enjoy some time off before bugging him too much.

VYPE: Who influenced you early on, either as a player or as a young coach? Is there someone that you’ve considered a mentor over the years? 

Barnes: I always tried from the very beginning as a volunteer out of college to observe and pick up on things and take notes as I go. I was fortunate to coach with my dad early in my career, which was not only great for experience in my career but also a time that I will always remember us sharing together. I learned from so many guys during my time at Union and am grateful for the opportunity that coach Fridrich gave me to be there and learn from him. Tony Tempest and Josh Blankenship worked together in running the offense and were great examples of working together for the benefit of a program. They were also both very knowledgeable and organized in their areas of expertise, which was another great learning experience for me. Then coming to Norman North to work with Wade Standley who was at Union my first year, who I learned so much from in the regards of running a program and managing all the things that come with being a head coach really prepared me for the position I’m in today. I’ve just been extremely blessed with the experiences I’ve had and all the great people that I’ve worked with over the years.