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Wednesday, Aug 27, 2014

POY Watch Presented By Rising Seniors Foundation

Sandy Creek's Swinney makes move

okSandy Creek RB Eric Swinney jumped from No. 5 to No. 2 in GHSF Daily's Player of the Year Watch after a 220-yard rushing performance against a Top 10 Class AAAAAA team.

 

Entering the POY Watch this week are Stephenson DE Chauncey Rivers, Aquinas RB/DB Ruben Garnett, Greater Atlanta Christian WR Darius Slayton and North Gwinnett QB John Urzua.

 

The POY Watch is designed to be a fun look at some of Georgia's best players. Players naturally will fall in and out of this elite list, and that should not be taken as a criticism of their season.

 

This list is a subjective ranking of players' impact on their teams and the state as a whole and their chances of winning the year-end all-classification player of the year award.

 

1. WR Preston Williams, Lovejoy: Williams opens his season Friday at Mundy's Mill. He is coming off a season in which he caught 56 passes for 1,402 yards and 14 touchdowns. Lovejoy, 10-2 in 2013, is ranked No. 6, giving him the spotlight he needs to win the state's most coveted individual award. Williams was the Class AAAAAA offensive player of the year in 2013. Rated the No. 3 wide-receiver prospect in the nation, Williams is committed to Tennessee.

 

Up arrow2. RB Eric Swinney, Sandy Creek: Swinney, rated the consensus No. 10 running-back prospect in the nation, rushed for 220 yards and scored a touchdown on 34 carries in a 21-13 victory over Archer, which entered the game ranked No. 3 in Class AAAAAA. Sandy Creek remained No. 2 in AAAA. Swinney rushed for 1,289 yards and 24 touchdowns for an 11-1-1 team last season. Swinney is committed to Ole Miss.

 

3. QB/DB A.J. Gray, Washington County: Gray opens his season Friday against Thomson. Gray is a two-way starter on a state runner-up team that should make another run in Class AAA this season. Gray completed 69 percent of his passes and threw for 1,913 yards and rushed for 1,324 in 2013. From the secondary, Gray made 75 tackles and had five interceptions, returning one for a touchdown. Washington County is ranked No. 1. Gray is committed to Georgia Tech.

 

Up arrow4. DE Chauncey Rivers, Stephenson: Rivers had 2.5 sacks in a 41-6 victory over Arabia Mountain. He is a preseason Atlanta Journal-Constitution Super 11 player. Rivers had 29 tackles for losses and 15 sacks in 2013. Stephenson is ranked No. 2 in Class AAAAA and takes on reigning Florida Class 6A champion Miami Central on Saturday at Hallford Stadium. Central is ranked No. 10 nationally by MaxPreps. Rivers has committed to Georgia.

 

5. DL Trent Thompson, Westover: Thompson had six tackles, two behind the line, in Westover's ESPNU-televised 13-0 loss to Lee County. Thompson was double- and triple-teamed as the noseguard in Westover's three-man front. Thompson, an AJC Super 11 pick, is the consensus No. 2 recruit in the nation. He is committed to Georgia.

 

Up arrow6. Terry Godwin, Callaway: Godwin, the consensus No. 1 athlete recruit in the country according to 247Sports, had three receptions for 68 yards and a fourth-quarter touchdown in Callaway's 20-14 overtime victory over LaGrange. He also had 82 return yards. Godwin is committed to Georgia.

 

Up arrow7. RB/DB Ruben Garnett, Aquinas: Garnett rushed for 181 yards and scored four touchdowns on 18 carries in a 41-6 victory over Glenn Hills. Garnett also played every down as a nickel back on defense and made one tackle. He was the Class A offensive player of the year in 2013, when he rushed for 1,928 yards and scored 27 touchdowns for a state-championship team. Aquinas is ranked No. 1 in Class A. Duke reportedly leads to sign Garnett among 15 Division I offers.

 

Up arrow8. WR Darius Slayton, Greater Atlanta Christian: Slayton had eight receptions for 186 yards and three touchdowns in a 24-21 victory over Benedictine. His 63-yard TD reception - a memorable one-hander - was the game-winner. He is coming off a season in which he had 31 receptions for 940 yards. Slayton is a two-time Georgia 400-meters champion. He's a consensus top-20 recruit in the state and has more than 20 offers, including those from Georgia and Georgia Tech. GAC is ranked No. 1 in Class AA.

 

Up arrow9. QB John Urzua, North Gwinnett: Urzua was 38-of-48 passing for 498 yards and seven touchdowns in a 52-49 victory over previously No. 1-ranked McEachern in the Corky Kell Classic. Urzua threw a 9-yard TD pass for the game-winner in the final seconds. Urzua is not yet a major-college prospect and is a first-year starter. North Gwinnett, which has produced more all-state quarterbacks in the past 10 seasons than any other Georgia program, is ranked No. 2.

 

10. OL Mitch Hyatt, North Gwinnett: Hyatt is a five-star recruit and consensus top-10 prospect in the nation. He led an offense that put up 576 yards in a 52-49 victory over No. 1-ranked McEachern at the Corky Kell Classic. The 52 points are the most allowed by McEachern at home since 1963 (North Cobb). No offensive lineman has won the AJC's ACPOY award since Zeb McKenzey of Parkview in 2002. Hyatt has committed to Clemson.

 

The Rising Seniors Foundation is the presenter of the Georgia Junior Bowl. Its mission is to inspire student-athletes to dominate the fifth quarter. For more on how that's done, see this video tributefrom players and coaches who participated in the 2013 game, and visit the Rising Seniors Foundation's Web site at www.risingseniors.com/.

Composite Rankings

Here's a look at Georgia's teams ranked on a consensus of six polls (AJC - Atlanta Journal-Constitution/GHSF Daily; GS - Georgia Sports Writers Association; GPB - Georgia Public Broadcasting; SA - Score Atlanta; MP - MaxPreps; and Max - Maxwell Ratings):

 

Class AAAAAA

AJC

GS

GPB

SA

MP

Max

TOT

1. North Gwinnett (1-0)

2

2

1

2

1

2

56

2. Colquitt County (1-0)

1

1

2

1

3

3

55

3. McEachern (0-1)

5

5

5

3

2

6

40

4. Norcross (1-0)

4

4

3

9

 

1

34

5T. Camden County (1-0)

3

3

6

8

 

4

31

5T. Lovejoy (0-0)

6

6

4

6

6

7

31

7. Archer (0-1)

10

8

8

4

5

 

20

8. Hughes (1-0)

7

7

 

 

4

 

15

9. Tucker (0-1)

9

9

7

 

 

9

10

10. Mill Creek (0-1)

 

 

 

5

8

 

9

11. Lowndes (1-0)

8

10.5

 

 

10

8

7.5

12. Hillgrove (1-0)

 

 

 

 

 

5

6

13. Grayson (0-0)

 

10.5

 

7

 

 

4.5

14. Milton (0-0)

 

 

 

 

7

 

4

15. Valdosta (1-0)

 

 

10

10

 

10

3

16T. Dacula (1-0)

 

 

 

 

9

 

2

16T. Peachtree Ridge (0-0)

 

 

9

 

 

 

2

Class AAAAA

AJC

GS

GPB

SA

MP

Max

TOT

1. Creekside (1-0)

1

1

1

2

1

5

55

2. Northside, W.Robins (1-0)

4

2

2

1

2

1

54

3T. Ware County (1-0)

5

4

5

5

3

4

40

3T. Stephenson (1-0)

2

3

3

4

7

7

40

5. Coffee (1-0)

3

7

6

3

4

6

37

6. Kell (1-0)

6

5

4

6

 

2

32

7. Gainesville (0-0)

8

6

7

8

6

3

28

8. Warner Robins (0-0)

7

10

8

9

9

9

14

9. Allatoona (1-0)

10

8

 

7

 

8

11

10. Carver, Columbus (1-0)

9

9

9

 

8

 

9

11. Mays (0-1)

 

 

 

 

5

 

6

12T. Stockbridge (0-1)

 

 

 

 

10

 

1

12T. M.L. King (0-0)

 

 

 

 

 

10

1

12T. Harris County (0-0)

 

 

10

 

 

 

1

12T. Glynn Academy (1-0)

 

 

 

10

 

 

1

Class AAAA

AJC

GS

GPB

SA

MP

Max

TOT

1. Buford (1-0)

1

1

2

1

1

1

59

2. Sandy Creek (1-0)

2

2

1

2

2

2

55

3. Griffin (0-0)

3

3

3

3

3

3

48

4. Marist (0-0)

4

4

4

5

4

5

40

5. Thomas Co. Central (0-0)

6

5

5

6

6

7

31

6. Carrollton (0-1)

5

7

6

7

 

4

26

7. Burke County (1-0)

9

8

8

4

7

6

24

8. St. Pius (0-0)

7

6

7

8

8

8

22

9. Woodward Academy (0-0)

8

10

10

10

5

10

13

10T. Veterans (0-0)

 

9

 

9

 

 

4

10T. Whitewater (0-0)

10

 

 

 

10

9

4

12T. Mary Persons (0-0)

 

 

 

 

9

 

2

12T. Cartersville (0-0)

 

 

9

 

 

 

2

Class AAA

AJC

GS

GPB

SA

MP

Max

TOT

1. Washington County (0-0)

1

1

1

1

1

1

60

2. Callaway (1-0)

3

2

2

3

2

4

50

3. Calhoun (0-0)

2

3

3

2

9

2

45

4. Blessed Trinity (0-0)

6

4

6

4

6

3

37

5. Jefferson (1-0)

5

5

9

8

5

5

29

6. Ringgold (1-0)

8

6

8

7

4

7

26

7. Cedar Grove (0-0)

4

9

4

 

8

6

24

8. Peach County (0-0)

9

7

7

5

 

10

17

9. Central, Carrollton (1-0)

 

8

 

9

3

 

13

10. Elbert County (0-0)

7

 

5

 

 

 

10

11. Cook (0-0)

 

10

 

6

 

 

6

12T. Laney (1-0)

 

 

 

 

7

 

4

12T. Westminster (0-0)

 

 

10

 

 

8

4

14. Westside, Macon (0-0)

10

 

 

 

 

9

3

15. Hart County (0-0)

 

 

 

10

10

 

2

Class AA

AJC

GS

GPB

SA

MP

Max

TOT

1. Lovett (1-0)

2

1

1

1

1

1

59

2. GAC (1-0)

1

2

2

2

2

2

55

3. Benedictine (0-1)

4

4

6

3

3

4

42

4. Heard County (0-0)

3

3

4

4

10

9

33

5. Vidalia (1-0)

6

6

3

8

6

8

29

6T. Brooks County (0-1)

8

7

8

7

5

3

28

6T. Washington-Wilkes (0-0)

5

5

5

5

 

7

28

8. Fitzgerald (1-0)

7

8

7

6

 

6

21

9. Lamar County (0-0-1)

 

9

10

10

4

5

17

10. Seminole County (0-0)

9

10

9

9

8

 

10

11. Bowdon (0-1)

 

 

 

 

7

 

4

12. Macon County (0-0)

 

 

 

 

9

 

2

13T. Dublin (0-1)

10

 

 

 

 

 

1

13T. Thomasville (0-1)

 

 

 

 

 

10

1

Class A

AJC

GS

GPB

SA

MP

Max

TOT

1. Aquinas (1-0)

1

1

2

1

1

1

59

2. Marion County (0-0)

2

2

1

2

2

6

51

3. Calvary Day (1-0)

3

3

4

5

5

4

42

4. Mount Paran (1-0)

4

4

7

3

 

3

34

5. Charlton County (0-0)

6

5

5

4

6

 

29

6. Clinch County (1-0)

5

6

3

8

8

 

25

7. ELCA (0-1)

10

9

10.5

10

4

2

20.5

8. Irwin County (0-0-1)

7

7

8

 

7

10

16

9. Prince Avenue (0-0)

 

8

9

 

10

5

12

10T. Mount Pisgah (0-1)

 

 

 

 

3

 

8

10T. Landmark Christ. (1-0)

 

 

 

6

 

8

8

12. Dooly County (0-0)

9

 

6

 

 

 

7

13. Savannah Christ. (1-0)

 

 

10.5

7

 

9

6.5

14. Brookstone (1-0)

8

10

 

9

 

 

6

15. Lincoln County (1-0)

 

 

 

 

 

7

4

16. Tattnall Square (0-0)

 

 

 

 

9

 

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
REGION STANDINGS: Class AAAA

Region 1-AAAA

Division A

Team

Reg.

All

Last week

This week*

Albany

0-0

0-0

Did not play

vs. Mitchell Co. (M)

Cairo

0-0

0-0

Did not play

vs. Thomasville

Crisp County

0-0

0-0

Did not play

vs. Lee Co.

Thomas Co. Central

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Valdosta

Monroe

0-0

0-1

l. to Perry 21-14

at Terrell Co.

Division B

Team

Reg.

All

Last week

This week*

Bainbridge

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Early Co.

Dougherty

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Calhoun Co.

Americus-Sumter

0-0

0-1

l. to Sm. Station 38-13

vs. Macon Co.

Westover

0-0

0-1

l. to Lee Co. 13-0

Does not play

Worth County

0-0

0-1

l. to Fitzgerald 27-20

Does not play

 

Region 2-AAAA

Team

Reg.

All

Last week

This week

Perry

0-0

1-0

d. Monroe 21-14

Does not play

West Laurens

0-0

1-0

d. Thomasville 42-35

at Vidalia

Howard

0-0

0-0-1

t. Lamar Co. 19-19

at First Presbyterian

Baldwin

0-0

0-0

Did not play

vs. Hancock Central

Mary Persons

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Jackson

Upson-Lee

0-0

0-0

Did not play

Does not play

Veterans

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Houston Co. (Thu.)

 

Region 3-AAAA

Team

Reg.

All

Last week

This week

Burke County

0-0

1-0

d. Statesboro 12-0

at Jefferson Co.

Thomson

0-0

1-0

d. Jefferson Co. 26-13

at Washington Co.

Windsor Forest

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Beach (SM)

Liberty County

0-0

0-1

l. to Effingham Co. 35-7

at Bradwell Institute

Wayne County

0-0

0-1

l. to Glynn Co. 40-20

at Appling Co.

*New Hampstead

 

0-1

l. to Calvary Day 54-12

at Ridge.-Hardee., S.C.

 

Region 4-AAAA

Division A

Team

Reg.

All

Last week

This week

Eagle's Landing

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Union Grove

Eastside

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Alcovy (SH)

Hampton

0-0

0-0

Did not play

Does not play

Locust Grove

0-0

0-0

Did not play

vs. Ola

Walnut Grove

0-0

0-0

Did not play

vs. Monticello

Henry County

0-0

0-1

l. to Tift Co. 45-8

vs. Griffin

Division B

Team

Reg.

All

Last week

This week

Griffin

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Henry Co.

Jonesboro

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Sandy Creek

Mt. Zion (Jonesboro)

0-0

0-0

Did not play

vs. Morrow (T)

Pike County

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Lamar Co.

Riverdale

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at North Clayton (SC)

Spalding

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Forest Park (Thu., T)

Region 5-AAAA

Team

Reg.

All

Last week

This week

Sandy Creek

0-0

1-0

d. Archer 21-13

vs. Jonesboro

Troup

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at LaGrange (C)

Whitewater

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Starr's Mill

Woodward Academy

0-0

0-0

Did not play

vs. Decatur

Carrollton

0-0

0-1

l. to Kell 20-7

vs. Newnan

Fayette County

0-0

0-1

l. to McIntosh 28-25

at Drew (Thu., SC)

 

Region 6-AAAA

Team

Reg.

All

Last week

This week

Grady

0-0

1-0

d. Washington 20-14

Does not play

Chamblee

0-0

0-0

Did not play

vs. Druid Hills (ND)

Lithonia

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Clarkston (AV)

Marist

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Godby, Fla. (Sat., HS)

St. Pius

0-0

0-0

Did not play

vs. Blessed Trinity

Stone Mountain

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Campbell

Arabia Mountain

0-0

0-1

l. to Stephenson 41-6

at East Coweta

Columbia

0-0

0-1

l. to SW DeKalb 13-12

Does not play

Redan

0-0

0-1

l. to Lakeside, Atl. 40-19

vs. McNair (A)

Cross Keys

 

0-0

Did not play

at North Cobb Christian

 

Region 7-AAAA

Team

Reg.

All

Last week

This week

Southeast Whitfield

0-0

1-0

d. Coahulla Creek 45-0

at Murray Co.

Cartersville

0-0

0-0

Did not play

vs. Cass

Gilmer

0-0

0-0

Did not play

vs. Fannin Co.

Heritage (Ringgold)

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Ringgold

LaFayette

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Gordon Central

Pickens

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at White Co.

Northwest Whitfield

0-0

0-1

l. to Ringgold 21-11

Does not play

Ridgeland

0-0

0-1

l. to Adairsville 28-14

at Chattooga

 

Region 8-AAAA

Team

Reg.

All

Last week

This week

Buford

0-0

1-0

d. Trinity Chr., Fla. 17-0

vs. Berkmar

Madison County

0-0

1-0

d. Johnson, Gaines. 31-3

at Jackson Co.

Chestatee

0-0

0-0

Did not play

vs. Flowery Branch

Monroe Area

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Loganville

North Hall

0-0

0-0

Did not play

Does not play

Stephens County

0-0

0-0

Did not play

at Franklin Co.

White County

0-0

0-0

Did not play

vs. Pickens

North Oconee

0-0

0-1

l. to Coffee 27-14

at Greater Atlanta Christ.

Johnson (Gaines.)

 

0-1

l. to Madison Co. 31-3

vs. West Hall

 

Note: All scores are courtesy of the Georgia High School Football Historians Association, Georgia Public Broadcasting and other media outlets. If a score is not accurate, it was reported incorrectly.

 

*All of this week's games are Friday unless noted.

Stadium key: A - Adams; AV - Avondale; C - Callaway; HS - Hallford; M - Mills; ND - North DeKalb; SC - Southern Crescent; SH - Sharp; T - Tara

 

 

 

 

 

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Sept 8     Danny Ford

Sept 15     Walt Garrison

Sept 22     Paul Johnson

Sept 29     Dick Vermeil

Oct 6         Verne Lundquist

Oct 13       Chan Gailey  

Oct 20       Scott Woerner

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List

Explosive starts

Two games played last weekend rank among the four highest-scoring in GHSA history for a season opener. Here are the 12 highest:

 

115 - Miller County 91, Lanier County 24 (1999)

101 - North Gwinnett 52, McEachern 49 (2014)

100 - Milton 51, Chattahoochee 49 (2008)

96 - Creekside 55, South Cobb 41 (2014)

94 - Griffin 59, Dutchtown 35 (2013)

91 - Dawson County 56, Pickens 35 (2011)

89 - Lowndes 75, Woodland, Stockbridge 14 (2009)

89 - Upson 55, Crawford County 34 (1981)

89 - Cedartown 61, Marist 28 (1982)

87 - Mount Zion 46, Pacelli 41 (2001)

87 - Cherokee 53, Creekview 34 (2013)

87 - Winder-Barrow 87, Cumming 0 (1951)

 

Source: Loren Maxwell, GHSFHA

 

Trivia

Fairburn, a town of some 5,000 residents, is home to three teams that are ranked in the Top 10 of at least one poll this week (see composite rankings). What are the three schools? Hint: Only one is in the city limits, and it occupies the campus of a high school that closed in 1990. (Answer Thursday)

 

Answer to Tuesday's question: The most recent Georgia school to win 30 consecutive games was Sandy Creek. The Patriots' 41-game winning streak was ended by Gainesville in the 2011 Class AAA quarterfinals.

 

Four Questions Presented By GHS Scoreboard Show 

12

GHSF Daily asked Georgia head coaches to answer these four questions. We'll report from a different head coach each day.

 

Rob Ridings, Thomson

1. Who is/was the most influential person in your coaching career? "Boots Donnelly, my head football coach at Middle Tennessee from 1979 to 1982. Coach Donnelly taught us to be mentally and physically tough, to play as a team and never, ever give up."

 

2. Who is the best Georgia player you ever faced? "Rodney Hudson, our quarterback at LaGrange High School from 1989 to 1991. Faced him every day in practice. He was the most talented quarterback I have seen in my 30 years of coaching. He always had a smile on his face, great attitude, and he challenged our defense every day to improve. We won the AAAA state championship at LaGrange with Rodney Hudson as our leader and also were named USA Today national champions in 1991."

 

3. What is the best team you ever faced as a coach? "The Valdosta Wildcats in 1991 at Callaway Stadium in LaGrange in the quarterfinals. Both teams were evenly matched. It was a cold night in LaGrange and an overflowing crowd, which produced a great atmosphere. We won the game 6-0 and had to make a final goal-line stand."

 

4. If you were Gary Phillips, the new head of the GHSA, what would be the first rule that you would try to change? "I would like for the GHSA to bring back the spring scrimmage game after the 10 days of spring practice and also allow more flexibility in the summer to work with other schools in helmets and shoulder pads."

 

The Georgia High School Scoreboard Show presented by Georgia Farm Bureau enters a 16th season on Friday nights from 10 to midnight, delivering scores and game reports from play-by-play teams throughout the state. Hosted by Tommy Palmer, the program is carried on a 55+ radio station network. Sponsors include the Georgia Farm Bureau, GHSA, Verizon, Daniel Automotive Group, Georgia Southern and Georgia EMC. For a list of affiliates, go towww.palmermediagroup.com.

 

 

 

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Maxwell Ratings

Here are this week's state rankings as determined by the Maxwell Ratings. Below, we give you the top 25 overall teams. To see all 417 football-playing schools in Georgia and how they rank in their classifications, click here. The ratings have no data on out-of-state opponents, so games against them are discounted.

 

1. Norcross (1-0)

2. Buford (1-0)

3. North Gwinnett (1-0)

4. Colquitt County (1-0)

5. Sandy Creek (1-0)

6. Camden County (1-0)

7. Hillgrove (1-0)

8. McEachern (0-1)

9. Griffin (0-0)

10. Lovejoy (0-0)

11. Lowndes (1-0)

12. Tucker (0-1)

13. Northside-W. Robins (1-0)

14. Kell (1-0)

15. Valdosta (1-0)

16. Dacula (1-0)

17. Gainesville (0-0)

18. Grayson (0-0)

19. Washington County (0-0)

20. Peachtree Ridge (0-0)

21. Mill Creek (0-1)

22. Walton (1-0)

23. Ware County (1-0)

24. Creekside (1-0)

25. Hughes (1-0)

 

More Top Performers

*Etowah RB Raishod Devezinhad 278 yards on 28 carries and five touchdowns in a 48-20 road victory over Marietta.

 

*Mountain View LB Jordan Jones had 14 tackles (eight solo), one tackle for a loss and one sack for a safety in a 38-31 victory over South Forsyth. It was Mountain View's first season-opening victory since its first full varsity season in 2010.