Four-Time Champion Phillip Barnett Signs with Sharks

by Steve Curran

All-League Veteran Receiver Selects Jacksonville for 2021

JACKSONVILLE – The 2019 National Arena League Champion Jacksonville Sharks announced today the signing of CIFL, UIFL, PIFL, and NAL champion wide receiver Phillip Barnett. This will be Barnett’s ninth season of arena football and first with the Sharks.

Phillip Barnett (6’3, 215) played with the Washington Valor of the AFL during the 2019 season. Barnett was a star receiver for the Carolina Cobras, recording 63 catches for 644 yards and tied for 1st in touchdown receptions with 21 during the regular season. Barnett helped the first-year franchise to a 12-5 record, a home playoff berth, and led the Cobras into the 2018 National Arena League Championship Game. In the championship game, Barnett caught four passes for 43 yards and a touchdown as the Cobras soundly defeated the Columbus Lions 66-8 to claim the championship trophy. Barnett made history with the Cobras as he caught the first touchdown pass in team history during the franchise’s inaugural home opener against the Jacksonville Sharks in Greensboro, NC.

Barnett spent the 2017 season with the Wichita Falls Nighthawks of the IFL where he helped the team to a 12-4 record only one game shy of an IFL playoff berth. He played in nine games that season with 41 receptions for 320 yards and eight touchdowns. Prior to the Nighthawks, Barnett played two seasons with the AFL’s Tampa Bay Storm (2015-2016). He had 104 receptions for 1,026 yards and scored 22 touchdowns as a receiver for the Storm. Barnett also spent two seasons with the Nashville Venom (2014-2015) where he won a PIFL Championship in 2014 and was named the 2014 PIFL Offensive Player of the Year. Before his departure in Nashville, he racked up 79 receptions for 1,047 yards and 28 touchdowns. Barnett spent the 2013 season with the Texas Revolution of the IFL where he was one of the top receivers catching 60 passes for 697 yards, and 12 touchdowns. Barnett set the franchise record for most receptions in a single game with 14 against the Champion Sioux Falls Storm. Barnett began his arena football career with the Cincinnati Commandos where he played for two seasons (2011-2012). In both years Barnett and the Commandos won league championships. Accomplishing a UIFL Championship victory in 2012 where Barnett was also named First Team All-UIFL North. Barnett won his first championship in his rookie year in 2011 when the Commandos won the CIFL Championship finishing the season with a perfect 10-0 record.

Barnett is a native of Middletown, OH, and played high school football at Middletown High where he was recruited and signed by the University of Toledo.

“Extremely excited to have a player of Phil’s caliber playing for the Sharks in 2021. He brings a lot to the table at the receiver position. He has the ability to get open vs. man coverage which we all know is a plus in this game. He also brings a very high football IQ which from a coaching standpoint is huge. I have coached against Phil several times in the last few years and am glad to finally have him on my side for once. He will be a very productive player for us.” Said NAL Champion Head Coach James Fuller.


About the Jacksonville Sharks 

The Jacksonville Sharks are members of the National Arena League (NAL). The 2019 & 2017 NAL Champions and ArenaBowl XXIV Champions play all of their home games at the Veterans Memorial Arena. Shark Nation Memberships for the 2021 season are now available. To become a Shark Nation member or for more information please call (904) 621-0700 or email   Follow the Sharks on Facebook at and on Twitter and Instagram @jaxsharks, as well as the Attack Dance Team at and Chum at