BARSTOW Barstow High School is once again on the hunt for a head football coach despite approving a candidate a little more than a month ago.

The Barstow Unified School District approved John Marquez, a BHS graduate and longtime coach, for the head coach position on March 22. However, Marquez said he turned the position down last week due to changes in his life.

"I went ahead and turned it down," Marquez said. "Basically I have some personnel decisions that I made. I felt that I needed to take my life in another direction. It wasn't an easy decision to make. I'm sure Barstow will be fine and they'll get someone dedicated to take over the program."

Marquez said he still isn't sure where he'll go next, but he plans to continue coaching. Although Marquez isn't taking the BHS job, his contract at Victor Valley Community College runs out in June.

Letters of interest and resumes for the head coaching position are due to BHS athletic director Vince Williams by May 6. Williams said that he has already started to receive applications for the position, but declined to comment on the details of the applicants. Once Williams makes picks a candidate the school board will vote to approve the new coach.

The Aztecs' football team may not have a head coach, but Barstow is still preparing for the 2011 season with assistant coaches from last season such as Ray Silva and Paul Knight, according to Williams.

"I think we'll be fine," Williams said. "We've got the assistants working with the guys, and once the new coach gets in they'll be able to start practicing together."