Prep Zone: High School Sports blog 

AJC updates from the world of high school sports in metro Atlanta and Georgia

AAAAAA blog: Woodstock, Northview make history … Big nights for Cherokee WR, South Cobb QB … R1 is 29-0 … NG brings arena-league to GA

  • 9:01 am Saturday, September 27th, 2014 by Todd Holcomb

Woodstock’s 47-44 victory over Etowah on Friday might live as one of the epic games in Cherokee County history. It made Woodstock 5-0 for the first time in history, which dates to 1997, in a game between unbeaten teams.

Woodstock won in the second overtime when Justin Anger threw a 15-yard touchdown pass to Josh Loud after Etowah was held to a field goal. Agner passed for 189 and rushed for 66.

“I hope this builds more confidence in them to know that’s a playoff team that we just played,” Woodstock coach Brent Budde told the Cherokee Tribune.

Woodstock has been [More]

AAAAAA blog: Eyes on Cherokee as Etowah plays Woodstock in game of unbeatens

  • 9:52 am Thursday, September 25th, 2014 by Todd Holcomb

The Etowah-Woodstock game at Woodstock on Friday is the only meeting of unbeaten Class AAAAAA teams this week. The winner (both are 4-0 overall, 2-0 in Region 5) will emerge as the first-place team, a half-game ahead of Roswell (3-1, 2-0), which is idle this week.

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Woodstock, which opened in 1997, has never been 5-0. Etowah started 6-0 last season but stalled and finished 7-4.

Etowah’s Raishod Devezin is the leading rusher in Class AAAAAA and No. 5 overall, according to GHSF Daily’s Leaderboard, with 854 yards in the Eagles’ four games. He has rushed for 200 yards [More]

AAAAAA blog: McEachern-Lovejoy is final major inter-region clash of regular season

  • 9:07 am Thursday, September 18th, 2014 by Todd Holcomb

It’s a light week for Class AAAAAA with regions 3, 4 and 5 entirely off.

Here are four of the more intriguing games -

McEachern at Lovejoy – This is the last of the major inter-region games of the season in AAAAAA. We’ve had some good ones. McEachern, the preseason No. 1, made it back in the Top 10 after a 35-21 victory over Peachtree Ridge. With two losses, McEachern was a controversial choice to re-enter the rankings, but some forget that the Indians still have five major D-I recruits even without injured RB Taj Griffin (Oregon). Those would be junior DT [More]

Big winners Friday are Grayson, Lovejoy, McEachern, 1-AAAAAA

  • 8:09 am Saturday, September 13th, 2014 by Todd Holcomb

Observations from the fourth week of the season in Class AAAAAA …

-Fourth-ranked Grayson (3-0, 1-0) became the team to beat in Region 8 with a 14-10 victory over defending champion Archer, which had first-and-goal at Grayson’s 3-yard line in the final minute but was turned away. Grayson’s defense is proving to be one of the state’s best. Four major Division I prospects start on that side of the ball for the Rams. Archer, which started the season ranked No. 3 after the 11-1 finish of 2013, has lost to three ranked teams – Sandy Creek, Peachtree Ridge and Grayson, each [More]

AAAAAA blog: Archer has ‘high expectations still’ despite 0-2 start

  • 9:58 am Thursday, September 11th, 2014 by Todd Holcomb

Ranked No. 3 in preseason, Archer is 0-2, but all will be forgiven Friday if the Tigers win their Region 8 opener against fourth-ranked Grayson (2-0).

Archer will benefit from the return of quarterback Gabe Tiller, who was limited to punting last week against No. 7 Peachtree Ridge (14-10 loss) because of an injury. Also fully healthy is preseason all-state junior Dylan Singleton, who was limited last week. He’s expected to play a fuller role as running back and/or wide receiver against Grayson.

Archer’s other loss came against Sandy Creek (21-13), the No. 2 team in AAAA. Penalties and turnovers proved fatal [More]

POY Watch: South Cobb’s Carter turning heads

  • 6:00 am Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014 by Todd Holcomb

Kylil Carter doesn’t play on a Top 10 team, and he’s got no reported scholarship offers. Those aren’t the usual starting points for players who would be all-classification players of the year in Georgia. But nobody to this point is having a better season than the senior quarterback from South Cobb.

In two games, he has thrown for 536 yards and rushed for 398. He has scored five touchdowns and passed for six. Carter’s recruitment, which might’ve been hampered by playing under three head coaches in three seasons, should begin to pick up. South Cobb is 1-1, but the loss was [More]

AAAAAA blog: Colquitt County restores state pride … Big wins also for North Cobb, Grayson, Lowndes, P’Ridge

  • 12:50 am Saturday, August 30th, 2014 by Todd Holcomb

Georgia high school football got its pride hurt a year ago when its defending Class AAAAAA champion, Norcross, was beaten 55-0 on national TV by Booker T. Washington, a Miami team that would claim several mythical national titles.

Give credit to Norcross for picking up the pieces and winning AAAAAA again last year, but give Colquitt County – the current No. 1 team in AAAAAA – a hand also for the statement it made nationally on Friday night in Moultrie, where the Packers dominated two-time Alabama Class 6A champion Hoover 35-14.

Sihiem King, the preseason all-state running back, rushed for 169 yards [More]

AAAAAA blog: Best schedule of games this weekend until playoffs

  • 11:28 am Wednesday, August 27th, 2014 by Todd Holcomb

There won’t be another weekend with so many good games in Class AAAAAA until the playoffs, so get a good seat somewhere and watch Georgia’s highest classification reveal more secrets.

Here’s a sampling -

Booker T. Washington vs. Tucker – This is the final of four games in the Battle of the Borders event at Hallford Stadium, the only one involving a AAAAAA team. BTW – which won mythical national titles last season – is ranked as high as No. 4 by Scout and is Florida’s reigning Class 4A champion. BTW beat Norcross 55-0 last season. Norcross beat Tucker 32-29 last week.

Hoover [More]

AAAAAA blog: What Kell team is most likely to win state?

  • 9:37 am Wednesday, August 20th, 2014 by Todd Holcomb

Twelve teams that have played in the Corky Kell Classic, which will be played for the 23rd time Friday and Saturday at McEachern, have gone on to win state championships the same year. The most recent was Grayson in 2011. (List below.)

Preseason polls would need to be badly wrong for it not to happen in 2014. The top six teams in the Class AAAAAA rankings – McEachern, Colquitt County, Archer, North Gwinnett, Tucker and Mill Creek – are playing as part of the seven-game event. So is defending AAAAAA champion Norcross (No. 9) and the No. 2 team from AAAA, Sandy [More]

AAAAAA: Maxwell Ratings predict region standings, W-L records

  • 9:24 pm Sunday, August 10th, 2014 by Todd Holcomb

The Maxwell Ratings have predicted the region standings and the won-lost records of Georgia’s Class AAAAAA teams. The computer ratings are the work of Loren Maxwell, founder of the Georgia High School Football Historical Association. He has been involved with sports ratings since 1986.

His region-by-region breakdowns are based on a Monte Carlo simulation of the 2014 season. The simulation completed 1,000,000 trials at the rate of approximately 51 seasons per second.

While the Maxwell Ratings reflect each team’s strength, the Monte Carlo simulation highlights the impact of the season’s structure (i.e., schedules, region alignments, etc.).

All out of state opponents were considered [More]