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Thursday night will mark the end of an era for Barnegat football.

Rob Davis, the only coach in Bengals history, told Shore Sports Network that Thursday night’s game at St. John Vianney will be his last as Barnegat’s head coach.

“I need to take a step back and take care of my health,” Davis said. “I had a health scare two years ago and took a few months off after the season but it’s time to really step away and get my health in order. Tomorrow will be my last game. I had to do it for my family.”

10/24/2020 - Barnegat / Manchester Township
Photo by Richard O'Donnell

Davis is not just the first and only coach in the 15-year history of Barnegat’s football program, he also started the middle school football program prior to the high school’s 2004 opening to ensure the high school team could hit the ground running. Entering Friday night’s game against St. John Vianney, Davis has a career record of 81-69 with four division titles, one NJSIAA sectional final appearance and two additional appearances in the sectional semifinals.

Over the summer, Davis was voted as Barnegat’s Face of the Franchise.

In 2013, Barnegat won a school-record 10 games and captured the Class B South division title. Regardless of the outcome of Thursday night’s season finale, the Bengals will finish with a record of .500 or better for the 10th time in 11 seasons. Only one time in 15 years did Barnegat fail to win at least four games. The Bengals were under .500 just four times in 15 years and three of those seasons came in the program’s first four years of existence.

“I’m proud of that, 10 of the last 11 years being .500 or better,” Davis said. “We’ve been relevant every year, we’ve won championships, we’ve put kids in colleges. I feel like the program is in a good place, so there’s closure with that.”

Davis didn’t rule out a return to coaching in the future. In fact, he’s hoping it is sooner than later.

“My goal is to get my health in check and get back on the sidelines,” Davis said. “I definitely want to coach again.”


Managing editor Bob Badders can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @Bob_Badders. Like Shore Sports Network on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube channel for all the latest video highlights. 



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