Posted: 7:00 am Wednesday, August 6th, 2014

Buford puts six players on AAAA preseason all-state team 

By Todd Holcomb

Buford, the school that claims six state championships over the past seven seasons, is moving up to Class AAAA this season, but it’s more than obvious from GHSF Daily’s preseason all-state team that the Wolves will not be unarmed in the higher classification.

Six Buford players made the list, and none would be called a sleeper. DL Quay Picou (Tennessee), OL Nick Polino (North Carolina), LB Austin Smith (Tennessee) and PK Matt Bonadies (UAB) have committed to Division I schools. LB/RB Joshua Thomas, perhaps the team’s best all-around player last season, a 1,000-yard rusher who made all-state as a linebacker, is the No. 62 consensus prospect in Georgia. TE/DL Isaac Nauta is the No. 3 consensus recruit among juniors.

Then consider some of the Buford players who didn’t make our list – DB David Curry is committed to Virginia. RB/DB Evyn Cooper has 13 offers, including those from Georgia and Georgia Tech. And Blake Ferguson, committed to LSU, is rated the No. 1 long snapper in the state.

Don’t expect Griffin, the reigning champion, to concede, however. The Bears have three preseason all-state players. So does perennial contender Sandy Creek. Marist, North Oconee and Woodward Academy have two each.

The team is led by Westover DT Trenton Thompson, the consensus No. 1 recruit in Georgia.

Offense

QB – Caleb Shiflett, Northwest Whitfield, Sr.

RB – Shannon Brooks, Pickens, Sr.

RB – Kawon Bryant, North Oconee, Sr.

RB – Eric Swinney, Sandy Creek, Sr.

WR – Keyston Fuller, Griffin, Sr.

WR – Christian Owens, Griffin, Sr.

TE – Isaac Nauta, Buford, Jr.

OL – Ben Cleveland, Stephens County, Jr.

OL – Sage Hardin, Marist, Sr.

OL – Mitch Mathes, Troup, Sr.

OL – Nick Polino, Buford, Sr.

OL – Chandler Tuitt, Sandy Creek, Jr.

PK – Matthew Bonadies, Buford, Sr.

Defense

DL – Kenneth Brinson, Marist, Sr.

DL – Austin Bryant, Thomas County Central, Sr.

DL – Quay Picou, Buford, Sr.

DL – Trenton Thompson, Westover, Sr.

LB – J.L. Banks, North Oconee, Sr.

LB – Jordan Colbert, Griffin, Sr.

LB – Austin Smith, Buford, Sr.

LB – Joshua Thomas, Buford, Sr.

DB – Rashaad Bolton, Veterans, Sr.

DB – Arrington Farrar, Woodward Academy, Sr.

DB – Richard LeCounte, Liberty County, So.

DB – Brian Miller, Sandy Creek, Sr.

P – William Collings, Woodward Academy, Sr.

Coming Thursday: Class AAA preseason all-state team.

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2 comments
Sportsnutx2
Sportsnutx2

Tennessee is hitting Georgia hard for players. The last 2 years, they have quietly snatched away what will be considered a little more than a Georgia flavor on it's roster. It should be noted that they are getting some of our best. Georgia and GT need to step up.

ToddHolcomb
ToddHolcomb moderator

Original story had five Buford players. We found today that one of our linebackers doesn't play for the school we had listed, so we added addition - Buford LB Austin Smith, who is committed to Tennessee. That gives Buford six players. We note that Buford is ranked No. 25 nationally in a composite poll published today by MaxPreps.