Coaching carousel begins with Centennial football opening after Josh Watkins' resignation

Centennial football will have a new head coach leading the Eagles in 2023.

On Monday, the school announced that Josh Watkins resigned from his post after four seasons and back-to-back regional quarterfinal trips the last two seasons.

This season, Centennial went 6-5 and was eliminated in the Region 3-4S quarterfinals with a 28-16 loss to Melbourne.

Watkins cited changes to his personal life to believe the time was right for him to step aside but also felt coaching will be something he wants to return down the road when the time is right.

"I'll get back into it, I don't know when but I'll wait for the right deal," Watkins said. "I don't know about as a head coach again but I'll definitely be involved somewhere somehow."

Over his tenure, Watkins went 18-22. Including the COVID-19-impacted 2020 football season in which all teams that wanted to participate in the postseason, the Eagles made three postseason appearances.

Centennial athletic director Blake Combs was positive about Watkins and the efforts he put into the program and will gather with administration to form a committee to begin finding their next head coach.

St. Lucie West Centennial High School football coach Josh Watkins, center, leads his team back on to the field after a water break during practice on Monday, Aug. 2, 2021, in Port St. Lucie.
St. Lucie West Centennial High School football coach Josh Watkins, center, leads his team back on to the field after a water break during practice on Monday, Aug. 2, 2021, in Port St. Lucie.

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“We anticipate getting a large number of applicants for the position and we look forward to working with the new coach,” Combs said. “Josh has always on our end everything’s been super positive, he’s been awesome. We wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors.”

Watkins will remain at the school as a physical education teacher for the remainder of the school year and will also continue to help his senior class with their recruiting process with the early signing window approaching.

"Any colleges that are coming through, I'll sit down and speak with them until the school gets somebody in place," Watkins said. "I'll be there to communicate and make sure our guys get taken care of until they hire somebody."

Centennial is the first Treasure Coast program in search of a new head coach this offseason. Fort Pierce Westwood and Okeechobee welcomed in new head coaches last year,

Bryan Cooney is the high school sports reporter for Treasure Coast Newspapers. He can be reached at bcooney@gannett.com.

This article originally appeared on Treasure Coast Newspapers: Centennial head football coach Josh Watkins resigns after four years