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COMPLETE TEAM BY TEAM PREVIEWS PLUS REGION ANALYSIS AND PREDICTIONS CENTRAL GEORGIA’S PREMIERE HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL MAGAZINE

HATCHER FACTOR COACHING CHANGES

CENTRAL GEORGIA EDITION 2009

FPD Gets Ready For Move To GHSA

JONES COUNTY’S CHEER FACTORY

Who Will Reign in 1-AAAAA

Northside’s QUIN GREEN


From The Publisher We’re proud to unveil our Prep Preview for the third straight season. We feel our publication is the most comprehensive magazine for Middle Georgia football fans. Thanks again to the countless people who have assisted with this publication in some shape or fashion. I also want to thank all of the advertising sponsors found within these pages. I hope you can support their products and services as a way to say “thanks” for their support. As always, special thanks again to my family. My wife Shannon, daughters Lexi and Sarah Denton. Their love, support, and especially patience during the preparation of this magazine are much appreciated. Finally, I want to send out get well wishes to Central coach Anthony Hines. We hope you’re feeling better and back in action soon. Enjoy the season and thank-you for picking up a copy of our magazine.

ON THE COVER:

FPD picture courtesy: Andrew Brooks, Northside’s Quin Green. courtesy: Steve Kelley. Dublin band, courtesy: Joey Wilson Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview is published by Bibb Media, Inc. All contents of this issue are copyright 2009 Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview. All rights reserved. The publisher is not responsible for information that is erroneous including but not limited to changes in dates and team personnel. All information obtained was done with the understanding that the information was correct. The staff of Bibb Media welcomes your comments and suggestions. You can write to us: Bibb Media, Incorporated, P.O. Box 7222, Macon, Ga. 31209-7222, phone us at: (478) 787-2357, or visit us on the web at: www. bibbmedia.com/contact.

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Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009


CO

NT

CENTRAL GEORGIA EDITION 2009

12

TS

Anniversary Time Line A look back at some championship teams celebrating a monumental anniversary.

23 the future of the gisa FPD decided to jump ship and move to the GHSA, so how does the future look for the GISA?

37

EN

45

Where Are They Now

Former Central standout Roger Jackson certainly knows the meaning of “giving back.”

84

45 Coaching Legend

Hawkinsville legend Bobby Gentry may have been small in stature but he sure was big on winning.

67

How Times Have Changed At Jones County cheerleading is no longer like it was in grandma’s day.

84 Like Father, Like Son

Chris and Edgar Hatcher have made successful careers out of marching the sidelines.

37

EXTRA POINTS 11 Coaching Changes 39 Macon Touchdown Club 76 Monroe Academy Closes 79 Superlatives 94 The College Page 96 Prep Picks

23

67 5


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www.freshairbarbecue.com 6

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009


TH CENTRAL GEORGIA EDITION 2009

Jeffrey Whitaker hopes to lead Warner Robins Robins back to the playoffs (page 19).

ET

EA

MS

Coach Carror Wright hopes his Patriots can have another solid season (page 50).

Baldwin ................................. 81

Hawkinsville ........................61

Southwest ............................. 50

Bleckley County................... 43

Houston County .................. 17

Stratford ................................ 32

Brentwood ............................ 72

Howard ................................. 53

Tattnall .................................. 28

Central ................................... 51

John Milledge ...................... 35

Trinity .................................... 36

Covenant ............................... 74

Jones County ........................ 22

Twiggs County ..................... 62

Crawford County ................ 89

Macon County ..................... 88

Warner Robins ..................... 19

Dodge County ..................... 44

Mary Persons ....................... 56

Washington County ............ 82

Dooly County ...................... 60

Mt. DeSales .......................... 30

West Laurens ........................ 83

Dublin ................................... 41

Northeast .............................. 52

Westfield ............................... 34

East Laurens ......................... 42

Northside .............................. 16

Westside ................................ 21

First Presbyterian ................ 31

Peach County ....................... 64

Wilcox County ..................... 59

Fullington ............................. 75

Perry ...................................... 66

GMC Prep ............................. 92

Rutland ................................. 57

Wilkinson County .............. 91 Windsor ................................ 71

REGION PREVIEWS GHSA 1AAAAA GHSA 1AAAA GISA AAA GHSA 3AA GHSA 4AA GHSA 4AAA GHSA 2A GHSA 1AAA GISA AA GISA A GHSA 3AAA GHSA 5AA GHSA 7A

15 20 27 40 49 55 58 63 70 73 80 87 90

THE POWER 10

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

Baldwin Wilcox County Northside Peach County Washington County Westside Wilkinson County Warner Robins Dublin Twiggs County

Peach County Head Coach Chad Campbell and his Trojans are looking for a big year.

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Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009


STAFF AND CONTRIBUTORS PUBLISHER

Brad Bibb EDITOR

Brad Bibb GRAPHIC DESIGN

Brad Bibb Steve Markos CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

Sam Crenshaw Barry Denton Jim Hardin Teresa Lane Frank Malloy Bobby Pope Brad Bibb

PHOTOGRAPHY CREDITS

Gina Herring Lee McDavid Middle Georgia Archives, Washington Memorial Library, Macon Georgia Mike Newman Andrew Brooks Sam Crenshaw Chad Walters Georgia Southern Media Relations Andy Crabb Amy Thompson Joey Wilson Union Recorder Ted McCollough Gloria Payne Tracy Wheeler PeachSports.com Brian Russ Frank Kimball Lee Childers Dave Bowker Steve Kelley Denver Broncos Media Relations SPECIAL CONTRIBUTORS

Shannon Bibb Sam Crenshaw Jimmy Fain Patrick Osterman

SPECIAL THANKS

Greg Moore, Robert Slocum, Grady Smith, Barney Hester, Edgar Hatcher, Chris Hatcher, Palmer Feibelman, Muriel Jackson, Teresa Lane, Leah Bodnarchuk, Jill Tribble, Roger Jackson, Davis Hardin, Ben Hardin, King Kemper, Rodney Collins

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

9


COACHING CHANGES

Chief Seminole Steps Down If the state of Georgia had a Mount Rushmore of high school football coaches then Robert Davis would undoubtedly be one of the big four. The legendary coach abruptly stepped down as the Westside head man after a career spanning 44 years, 36 as a head coach. Davis came to Westside after a remarkable run at Warner Robins in which the Demons were the winningest program in the state during the decade of the 1970’s. Davis piloted Warner Robins to a pair of National Championships, 1976 and 1981. He also claimed three state championships during his tenure with the Demons. When Westside needed a head coach to start their new football program, Davis was the perfect man for the job. He quickly instilled a winning philosophy at the Bibb County school notching 100 wins in just eleven full seasons. The 2008 Seminoles were ranked number one most of the season before falling to Tucker in the state playoffs. Davis is currently ranked second in all-time wins in Georgia High School football history with 353, second only to Lincoln County’s Larry Campbell who has 426. Westside turns the program over to former assistant Sheddrick Risper. Most recently Risper has been the Athletic Director and football coach at Weaver Middle School. “Spoon” as he is known by many, served as a Seminole assistant to Davis from 1998-2002. At Weaver he coached many of the kids that eventually played for the Westside program so the transition for the new head coach should not be too drastic (even though he is replacing a legend). The 34 year old Risper is a native of Thomaston where he played high school football at Upson-Lee.

New Coaches on Sideline in ‘09 COACH

SCHOOL

PREVIOUS POSITION

SHEDRRICK RISPER

Westside

First Season

MARK PEMBERTON

West Laurens

Catholic, Knoxville

JOHN CALLAHAN

Trinity Christian

Mt. Anthony, Vmt.

BRAD OWENS

GMC

First Season

DON MARCHMAN

John Milledge

Ass’t. Coach

SHANE SELF

Covenant

Ass’t. Coach

Replaces legendary Robert Davis with first head coaching position.

78-11 in 7 years in Knoxville, Tennessee including 2008 AAA state title.

Replaces Steve Price who won 2 state titles in 6 seasons at Dublin school.

Former Offensive Coordinator for Bulldogs replaces Jon Cawley.

Back for second stint at JMA. Has 120 wins in 22 seasons as head coach.

Replaces Todd Whetsel who coached school’s first football season.

THE DAVIS FILE

36 seasons 353 wins national 2 championships state 3 championships region 23 championships seasons 21 with 10+ wins losing 0 seasons


CHAMPIONS A look back at these championship teams HAWKINSVILLE

DUBLIN

TATTNALL

The Red Devils wrapped up their second consecutive 12-0 season while capturing their second straight Class C title. Head coach Bobby Gentry led Hawkinsville to a 20-6 win over Buford for the championship. Just as he had the previous season, Melvin Borum led the offensive attack. The state back-of-the-year totaled 29 rushing touchdowns including 4 against both Warner Robins and Ft. Valley. The Devils defense recorded 6 shutouts as Hawkinsville spent the entire season ranked #1.

After winning their first 6 games and climbing to the top of the state rankings, Dublin and Ft. Valley battled to a 12-12 tie. That would ultimately be the only blemish on the Dublin record as the Irish ran the table in route to the Class A title. Sophomore fullback Tennyson Coleman scored 2 fourth quarter touchdowns as Dublin beat Summerville 13-0 in the championship game. The Irish finished the season 11-0-1 under head coach Minton Williams winning the first state crown in school history.

Tattnall successfully defended their 1988 state title with another crown in 1989. The Trojans quarterback Todd Mickler was injured in the third game of the season, a 7-7 tie against Westfield. Heath Mills stepped into the QB role and running back Bryan Smith filled in for the injured Chan Howington as Tattnall ran the table to finish 12-0-1. The Trojans beat FPD 28-6 in the championship game. The Tattnall defense posted 5 shutouts on their way to their second straight title.

1954 1959

1940

1950

1960

1989

1970

1980

HAWKINSVILLE

MONROE

Bobby Gentry’s 1959 Red Devil team was a disappointing 32 after losing to arch rival Ft. Valley 27-7 on October 2nd. But Hawkinsville would not lose again reeling off seven straight wins to claim yet another Class C state title. The championship game against North Cobb was a thriller. The Devils Ben Wilkes scored the lone Hawkinsville touchdown with just 4 minutes to play and the defense held the driving Warriors on fourth and goal from the one yard line to preserve a 6-0 victory.

Edgar Hatcher’s Mustangs won their second straight SEAIS title by winning 10 of 11 games. The only blemish a regular season 14-7 home loss to Stratford. Rusty Chambless and Jeff Harper led a talented Mustang offense. Harper was also a force for the defense which held 9 of the 11 opponents to 6 points or less. In the championship game, Monroe beat Westfield 20-6 for their second straight crown. The championship would prove to be the final title for the Forsyth school.

1959

1974

FROM LEFT: Minton Williams, Edgar Hatcher, Barney Hester


TIME LINE celebrating monumental anniversaries from the past 7 decades WASHINGTON CO.

STRATFORD

WARNER ROBINS

TRINITY

The Golden Hawks were dominating scoring 630 points in route to a perfect 15-0 record and the Class AA state title. Head coach Rick Tomberlin had a full stable of talented performers including future NFL star Takeo Spikes. Spikes joined fellow allstate performers: George Askew (QB), Edward Swint (RB), Jeremy Brett (DL), and Mike Parker (LB). Andre Battle scored a pair of touchdowns for the Hawks as they blasted Screven County 317 to claim the school’s first state championship.

The Eagles put it all together in 1999 winning all 13 games they played and claiming the GISA AAA crown. The offense was led by quarterback Tyler Flemming who rushed for 1485 yards while scoring 20 touchdowns. Sophomore Robbie Sovie added 1330 yards and 16 TD’s. Head Coach Rodney Collins watched future NFL draftee LeKevin Smith lead the defense. The Eagles survived a scare from George Walton escaping with a 21-20 quarterfinal win before beating Tattnall 24-6 in the title tilt.

Long time Demon assistant Bryan Way was named head coach in 2004 and he promptly guided the Demons to a 14-0-1 mark and the school’s 4th state championship. Alton Sanders rushed for over 2100 yards (29 touchdowns) and Kyle Hicks added 1000 for the Demons offense. The defense lead by Brian Buford, Chris Styles, and Dominique Davenport held opponents to just 9 points per game. Warner Robins beat Statesboro 34-13 in the AAAA state championship game.

The Crusaders were bounced 24-0 in their season opener, but Steve Price’s team rebounded to win 12 of their next 13 games in route to the GISA AA title. QB Jordan Price piloted a powerful offense that also featured RB Josh Walker and FB Kyle Shepard. The defense led by Adam Brown and George Best allowed only 21 points in four playoff games. The Crusaders survived a tough semi-final matchup in Sandersville beating Brentwood 14-7 before blasting Flint River 36-7 the following week.

1994 1999 2004 2004

1990

2000

TATTNALL

TRINITY

HAWKINSVILLE

STRATFORD

The Trojans survived early season losses to Westfield (12-9) and Stratford (21-16) and closed the season with 8 straight wins to claim the state AAA championship. Remarkably, Barney Hester’s team had only 5 seniors. Quarterback Buddy Perkins and fullback Jason Nesbitt led the offensive attack. Tattnall avenged their early losses by beating Westfield in the semifinals and Stratford in the championship game, outscoring their two foes 50-10. The title was the Trojans fourth in seven years.

After a 41-21 pounding at the hands of Gatewood, the Crusaders found themselves 2-3. Yet Ken Johnson was able to rally his troops and Trinity Christian notched seven straight wins to claim the GISA AA championship. The Crusaders put up more than 40 points five times including a 48-17 “payback” drubbing of Gatewood in the state semifinals. The following week, Trinity traveled to Briarwood and handled the Buccaneers 28-12 to claim their first AA title and second crown overall.

The Red Devils returned to the glory years sharing the Class A state title by virtue of their 1414 tie against Clinch County in the championship game. Head Coach Lee Campbell guided the Red Devils to a 14-0-1 record. QB Todd Coley led a high powered offense that featured Jeremy Marshall who rushed for over 1500 yards and scored 24 touchdowns. Up-front Trey Dunmon and Brandon Perry led the way. Lafallis Anderson had 7 interceptions for the Hawkinsville defense.

Former Eagle standout Mark Farriba was back on the sidelines piloting the Eagles to the 2004 GISA AAA championship. Offensively, Stratford rode the arm of QB Watson Argo (1700 yards passing, 15 touchdowns) and the legs of John Meyer (1819 yards rushing with 25 TD’s). Future Georgia signee Michael Lemon, Bo Baggerley, and Trevor Jenkins led the Eagles defense. Stratford avenged an earlier loss to FPD with a thrilling 35-34 overtime win over the Vikings for the title.

1994 1999 2004 2004 FROM LEFT: Rodney Collins, Bryan Way, Steve Price


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Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009


REGION 1-AAAAA FORECASTED FINISH

photo courtesy: Steve Kelley

1. Lowndes 2. Northside 3. Warner Robins 4. Valdosta 5. Tift County 6. Coffee 7. Colquitt County 8. Houston County PLAYERS TO WATCH PLAYER

lost some great football players last year (like Greg Reid - offensive player of the year) but the Vikings have plenty left in the tank and should be the team to beat in 1AAAAA. Ed Christian returns to anchor the offensive line with Tyler Hunter (son of former Georgia star Brice Hunter) likely to compete for the QB nod. Northside should compete with Greg Clark and Brison Williams leading a very solid defense. Across town the Demons, led by DL Jeffrey Whitaker look to improve off of their 5-5 campaign. Valdosta should be better as Rick Tomberlin continues to institute the style of play that yielded huge success at Washington County. Coffee has Pernell Williams leading their defensive secondary. He’s being recruited by everyone and is considering Florida among others. Tift County features one of the regions top quarterbacks in Malcolm Dixon while Colquitt may decide to move talented wide receiver Quin Roberson to the quarterback position this year. Houston County will be very inexperienced and the Bears will likely be outclassed by some of the other teams in what is arguably the state’s best region.

FINAL 2008 STANDINGS

Lowndes

POSITION

SCHOOL

Jeffrey Whitaker

DL

Warner Robins

Pernell Williams

CB

Coffee

Ed Christian

OL

Lowndes

Jay Rome

TE

Valdosta

Brison Williams

DB

Northside

REGION

OVERALL

1. Lowndes

7-0-0

10-0-0

2. Northside

6-1-0

9-1-0

3. Tift County

5-2-0

7-3-0

4. Coffee

4-3-0

7-3-0

5. Warner Robins

3-4-0

5-5-0

6. Valdosta

2-5-0

5-5-0

7. Colquitt County

1-6-0

4-6-0

8. Houston County 0-7-0

3-7-0


NORTHSIDE 2008 WRAP: The Eagles run towards their third straight state championship came to an end with a playoff loss to eventual AAAAA champ Camden County. Northside’s winning streak was finally stopped at 35 when the Eagles were beaten by region champ Lowndes in week six. Nonetheless, Northside finished another fine season with a 10-2 final record.

DEFENSE: Northside lost some very talented folks from their defensive unit headed by standout DE Abry Jones who signed with Georgia. Linebackers Darius Ivey and Eric Fields as well as defensive back K.J. Morton will all be tough to replace. Greg Clark is back on the defensive line and he should be the leader up front. Ian Cunningham, Troy Williams, and Josh Chester will also be in the trenches. Brison Williams (committed to South Carolina) and Brandon Brown gives Northside a great foundation in the secondary. The Eagle linebackers will be Deilouse Jackson, Darnell Slaton, and Phillip Jones.

OFFENSE: Head Coach Conrad Nix must re-assemble his backfield as two-year starting quarterback Joe Scott, and leading rusher Xavier Bacon (over 1600 yards) have departed. Briar Van Brunt a very athletic junior should become the Eagles new signal caller. The top running back prospects SPECIAL TEAMS: Devon Pike is one are Shaquille O’Neill (that’s right!), Re- of the state’s best kickers and he renis Perry, and Dontavious Stratford. turns for his final season. Pike will add Quin Green is a wid receiver with ex- the punting chores to his duties this perience. Quint Lester, Andre Smith, season replacing last year’s punter and Chris Vickers may all shuffle into Evan Arthur. the lineup. COACH NIX SAYS: The offensive line should be “We’ve got a lot of new guys. We lost 37 playa strong point for the Eagles. ers but we still have high expectations. Our Donnie Werden is back for ultimate goal at the end of the year is to be his senior year at center. there.” Branden Stephens and Chip Pogue will start at tackle and Gus Del Rio and Sam Cherney complete the WE THINK: Northside will field anoffensive line. Look for Alec Garcia other good team this season but to to step in at tight end replacing the continue their streak of 11 straight graduated Evan Arthur. Inexperience seasons with at least 10 wins will be is certainly a factor that concerns Nix. difficult. In addition to their tough re“A starter this year might have been gion schedule, the Eagles meet always a third team player last season,” says tough Carver in the second week of the veteran coach. the season. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.27

Perry

S.11

Carver

S.18

@ Valdosta

S.25

Houston County

O.2

Lowndes

O.9

Coffee

O.17

Grovetown

0.23

@ Tift County

0.30 N.6

@ Warner Robins Colquitt County

2008 RESULTS

Perry Booker T. Washington @ Carver Valdosta @ Houston County @ Lowndes @ Coffee Tift County Warner Robins @ Colquitt County Union Grove @ Camden County

W W W W W L W W W W W L

BY THE NUMBERS

50

Northside coach Conrad Nix has lost only 50 games in 23 seasons at the Eagles helm meaning Northside has averaged losing only 2 games per season under Nix.

Brison Williams

EAGLES FILE

HEAD COACH

Conrad Nix (24th year: 228-50-0) Overall (27th year: 247-63-0)

COACHING STAFF

Kevin Kinsler, Mark Stewart, Kevin Smith, Mark Estes, Randy Carr, Ryan Crawford, Kris Jarrell, Reginald Thorpe, Ken Price, Greg Street

2008 RECORD 10-2-0

LAST 3 YEARS 40-2-0

LAST 5 YEARS 64-5-0

STADIUM McConnell-Talbert

REGION 1-AAAAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS DB DL DB WR QB DL OL OL

Brison Williams (SR.) Greg Clark (SR.) Brandon Brown (SR.) Quin Green (SR.) Briar Van Brunt (JR.) Ian Cunningham (SR.) Sam Cherney (SR.) Donnie Werden (SR.)

E A G L E S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

K DL DL OL RB RB LB OL

Devon Pike (SR.) Josh Chester (SO.) Troy Williams (JR.) Chip Pogue (SR.) Shaquille O’Neill (JR.) Renis Perry (SR.) Deilouse Jackson (JR.) Gus Del Rio (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE DE Abry Jones, LB Eric Fields, DB K.J. Morton, QB Joe Scott, LB Darius Ivey, RB Xavier Bacon

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

N O R T H S I D E

16

38-19 31-7 7-6 28-14 31-0 7-24 17-14 30-14 14-0 31-7 24-7 20-28

photo courtesy: Chad Walters

EAGLES


HOUSTON CO. 2008 WRAP: The Bears posted three victories in their first season under Greg Robinson. Unfortunately, the three wins were all non-region victories to start the season and the Bears dropped their last seven in a row in the rugged 1-AAAAA.

DEFENSE: While the Bears have two retuning starters back on offense, the defense was decimated by graduation and returns only one starter, Jalani Phillips. Phillips is back to man one linebacker spot with Johnny Goodman, Lawson Howell, and Aubrey Mack also expected to see playing time. The defensive front will try and replace Justin Kitchens who signed with Purdue. Underclassmen Trey Grissett, Chauncey Greene, and Tyler Jackson join senior Matt Mazick as the projected starters. Greg Nelson leads a secondary that will also be inexperienced.

OFFENSE: The Bears lost plenty of weapons from last year’s squad including both quarterbacks, leading rusher Garrick Davis, and speedy receiver Craig Presley (who signed with Ft. Valley State). The quarterback position is wide open but Tyler Hall appears to be the front-runner based on his sound fundamentals. Robert Williams returns at a running back spot. Williams SPECIAL TEAMS: Josh Thompson rushed for over 600 yards last season. leaves the place kicking duties up for Travis Huttner and Ron Brown will also grabs. Hunter Heck will get the job see action in the backfield. this season. Greg Nelson will handle The offensive line returns a pair of the punting and Jalani Phillips gives tackles with Owas Khurshid and Jeff the Bears a real threat in the return Arthur back for their senior season. game. They’ll be joined by center COACH ROBINSON SAYS: Kyle Russell and guards Des“ We must do the little things right. We have mond Larkin, and Jose Ferrer. to compete on each play and make ourselves Mitchell Gleaton should start better from game to game. We can’t make at the tight end position. any mistakes in the kicking game.” Tyler Heck, Kourtney Harris, and Brandon Merritt will all compete for playing time at wide re- WE THINK: It will be another tough ceiver. The offense will be young with year for the Bears because of their only 2 starters returning from last sea- youth and the fact they play in what son. Coach Robinson hopes ball control Robinson calls “the toughest region in will be the key to his teams offensive the nation.” Mistake free football will strategy, “we’ll try to control the game be imperative if the Bears are to imby making first downs, taking time off prove upon their three wins of a seathe clock, and scoring points.” son ago. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.30

Groves

S.4

Fayette County

S.11

@ Bradwell Institute

S.17

Coffee

S.25

@ Northside

O.2

@ Tift County

O.16

Warner Robins

0.23

Lowndes

0.30 N.7

@ Colquitt County Valdosta

2008 RESULTS

@ Groves @ Fayette County Bradwell Institute @ Coffee Northside Tift County @ Warner Robins @ Lowndes Colquitt County @ Valdosta

H O U S T O N

W W W L L L L L L L

BY THE NUMBERS

41-0 31-0 20-16 7-30 0-31 24-31 7-24 14-52 14-28 0-17

42

Ernest Simms holds the Houston County record for career touchdowns with 42. Simms rushed for 3815 yards during his career which ended after the 1998 season.

Jalani Phillips

BEARS FILE

HEAD COACH

Greg Robinson (2nd year: 3-7-0) Overall (8th year: 41-34-0)

COACHING STAFF

Rex Hodges, Lee Pope, Johnathon Roddie, Tom Seward, Heath Burch, Fain Griffin, Jody Dean, Kenny Yanzetich, Jason Brett, Tripp Turley, Jim Vance

2008 RECORD 3-7-0

LAST 3 YEARS 12-21-0

LAST 5 YEARS 24-31-1

STADIUM McConnell-Talbert

REGION 1-AAAAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS LB RB OL OL DB WR LB DB

Jalani Phillips (SR.) Robert Williams (SR.) Owas Khurshid (SR.) Jeff Arthur (SR.) Greg Nelson (SR.) Tyler Heck (SR.) Johnny Goodman (SR.) Steven Nelson (JR.)

DE LB LB DE C DB DL DL

Matt Mazick (SR.) Lawson Howell (JR.) Aubrey Mack (JR.) Trey Grissett (JR.) Kyle Russell (JR.) Jordan Woodman (JR.) Tyler Jackson (JR.) Chauncey Greene (JR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE RB Garrick Davis, DE Justin Kitchens, LB Tony Larkin, QB Hogan Robinson, G Chris Jackson, WR Craig Presley

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

C O U N T Y

B E A R S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

17

photo courtesy: Steve Kelley

BEARS


WARNER ROBINS 2008 WRAP: The Demons bounced back from a 3-7 campaign to finish 5-5. Warner Robins was 5-3 before closing the season with back-to-back losses against region heavyweights Northside and Lowndes. The season did produce some high points for head coach Bryan Way like a road win over perennial powerhouse Valdosta. Graduation hits affect the quarterback position and other key spots as the Demons hope to improve.

DEFENSE: “Everything starts with stopping the run, and we must do that better” says the coach. That will start with a pair of talented tackles including senior Jeffrey Whitaker. Whitaker is being heavily recruited by just about everyone. While he is the centerpiece of the Demons defense, senior Andrew Lauritsen offers plenty of help up-front. Jesse Fowler and third leading tackler Daniel Bruce lead an experienced group at linebacker. The secondary is inexperienced with Michael Roberts and Darius Rogers-Wilson expected to lead this group.

OFFENSE: The Demons must replace a couple of proven performers in quarterback W.J. McAllister and top receiver Rashad Wynes but there should SPECIAL TEAMS: The Demons must be enough firepower coming back to replace three-year starter David Clark make the Demons a threat offensive- who handled both the kicking and ly. The QB position is wide open with punting duties. Kyle Floyd will likely Maurice Dudley likely the front-runner. handle the kicking while Caleb Floyd In the backfield Dominique Primus, should inherit the punting chores. JaChris Mallard, and Jonathan Jackson maine Collins offers speed in the reall return after leading the Demons turn game. rushing attack last season. COACH WAY SAYS: Expect the Demons to run “We have a good mix of experienced players their traditional Wing-T packwith some talented younger players. If the age with running the football older kids display outstanding leadership, we their top priority. could be very competitive.” The offensive front features Koory Esquibel at center. He’ll be joined by seniors Brett West, Trey WE THINK: The Demons have a Davis, and Wesley Hancock. Quintavis chance to improve if they find some Walker and D.J. Thomas lead the re- offensive consistency and the defense ceiving corps. For the Demons to be can stop the run. The schedule is aleffective offensively they must “be ways brutal in 1-AAAAA plus Warner tougher mentally and more consistent Robins faces a tough non-region road running the football,” says head coach contest at Grayson. Bryan Way. 2009 SCHEDULE

S.28

Wheeler

S.4

@ Grayson

S.12

@ Beach

S.18

Tift County

S.26

Valdosta

O.2

@ Coffee

O.16

@ Houston County

O.23

@ Colquitt County

O.30 N.6

Northside @ Lowndes

2008 RESULTS

@ Wheeler Grayson Beach @ Tift County @ Valdosta Coffee Houston County Colquitt County @ Northside Lowndes

W A R N E R

W L W L W L W W L L

BY THE NUMBERS

28-0 0-30 37-6 13-25 7-0 20-37 24-7 39-14 0-14 14-35

383

Former Demon great James Brooks rushed for a school record 383 yards and 6 touchdowns during a 70-13 win over Carver in 1975.

photo courtesy: www.robinsfootball.net

DEMONS

Jeffrey Whitaker

THE DEMONS FILE

HEAD COACH

Bryan Way (6th year: 40-19-1)

COACHING STAFF Stacey Harden, Bob Davis, Skip Johnston, Steve Ruzie, Bill Beatty, John Teague, David Bruce, Richard Hidges, Kevin Wall, John Chance, Fred Walker

2008 RECORD 5-5-0

LAST 3 YEARS 17-17-0

LAST 5 YEARS 40-19-1

STADIUM McConnell Talbert

REGION 1-AAAAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS DT DT RB RB WR LB FB LB

Jeffrey Whitaker (SR.) Andrew Lauritsen (SR.) Dominique Primus (SR.) Jonathan Jackson (SR.) Chris Mallard (SR.) Jesse Fowler (SR.) D.J. Butts (SR.) Daniel Bruce (SR.)

DE Billy Sparks (JR.) C Koory Esquibel (SR.) DB Michael Roberts (SR.) DB

Darius Rogers-Wilson (SR.)

WR QB OL OL

Quintavis Walker (SR.) Maurice Dudley (SR.) Brett West (SR.) Wesley Hancock (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE WR Rashad Wynes, QB W.J. McAllister, DE Derek Stover, K David Clark, FS Greg Hendricks, DE Cody Dorman

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

R O B I N S

D E M O N S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

19


REGION 1-AAAA FORECASTED FINISH 1. Bainbridge 2. Westside 3. Thomas County Central 4. Hardaway 5. Upson-Lee 6. Americus- Sumter 7. Harris County 8. Jones County 9. Lee County PLAYERS TO WATCH PLAYER

their second season under Head Coach Ed Pilcher who previously led Thomas County-Central to five state titles. With the Bearcat’s talented junior quarterback Rohan Gaines running Pilcher’s split-veer offense, we expect Bainbridge will be must improved in a wide-open region. Westside could once again challenge for the title. The Seminoles have plenty of returning talent with WR Ronald Carswell (headed to Alabama), DB DeAnthony Green (N.C. State commitment) and junior RB Robert Brown leading the way. Still it will be a transition year for Westside as first year head coach Sheddrick Risper replaces the legendary Robert Davis at the helm. Thomas County-Central should be stout defensively with junior Ray Drew and senior Caleb Heard leading the defensive front. Hardaway will rely on their poised senior quarterback Marcus Smith to keep the Hawks competitive. Upson-Lee returns fullback Logan Winkles (committed to N.C. State), but the Knights may not be ready to challenge for the region crown. Americus-Sumter will count on big Jonathan Battle. He’ll join Cairo transfer Ralph Wilson (6’9, 270 pounds) on the defensive front. Jones County has speedster Terrance Gore and should be better in their second season under Dwight Jones.

FINAL 2008 STANDINGS

Bainbridge enters

POSITION

SCHOOL

Ronald Carswell

WR

Westside

Ray Drew

DE

Thomas C.C.

Marcus Smith

QB

Hardaway

Jonathan Battle

DT

Amer-Sumter

Robert Brown

RB

Westside

REGION

OVERALL

1. Westside

8-0-0

12-1-0

2. Thomas C.C.

7-1-0

8-5-0

3. Harris County

6-2-0

6-5-0

4. Bainbridge

5-3-0

6-4-0

5. Hardaway

4-4-0

5-5-0

6. Upson-Lee

3-5-0

3-7-0

7. Amer.-Sumter

2-6-0

3-7-0

8. Jones County

1-7-0

3-7-0

9. Lee County

0-8-0

0-10-0


WESTSIDE

SEMINOLES

2008 WRAP: The Seminoles magical season towards the AAAA state title ended with a tough home loss to eventual state champion Tucker 31-20 in the quarterfinal round. The ‘Noles ended the year at 12-1, the best record in school history. While the Seminoles lost many fine players to graduation, the biggest and most surprising loss was the sudden resignation of coach Robert Davis paving the way for former assistant Sheddrick Risper to take over.

DEFENSE: Westside will miss three year starter and inspirational leader Julian Burnett. The linebacker signed with Georgia Tech after a stellar senior season. Leo Williams and Carlos Cave do return to give the Seminoles some experienced linebackers. The secondary will be led by two excellent safeties: DeAnthony Green (already committed to N.C. State), and Maurice Deal. Richard Nash is back at cornerback. The defensive front will have some questions to answer. Kwanza Burroughs is a rising junior expected to contribute. Owen Williams is another junior that should see action.

OFFENSE: The Seminoles lost plenty of big play performers like quarterback Orrin McFadden (signed with Jacksonville State), wide receiver Danny Madison and tight end Kory SPECIAL TEAMS: Senior German Threat, but coach Risper has plenty of Ramirez returns to handle the kicking weapons still in the arsenal. Running duties. Maurice Deal will do the puntback Robert Brown returns. He was ing and Ronnie Carswell gives Westthe leading rusher last season as a side a breakaway threat in the return sophomore. Senior Adrian Bentley will game. join Brown in the backfield. COACH RISPER SAYS: Senior Cameron Jones and “Like everyone else, we have to stay healthy junior Daniel Duhart will batand injury free. I’m excited about the chaltle for the quarterback job. lenge ahead and carrying on the Westside The wideouts feature Ronnie tradition.” Carswell (already committed to Alabama) and he has all of the tools. Rick Merritt will lineup at the WE THINK: Westside should once other wide receiver spot. again be very good and challenge While the skill positions are cement- for the region crown. This year’s edied, the offensive line will be young. tion will be hard pressed to meet last Seniors Neil Duncan and Dorian Byrd season’s successes especially with and junior Rakim Clowers “must grow the youthful offensive line and a new up in a hurry,” according to Risper for coaching staff. the ‘Noles to be successful. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

Central

S.3

@ Forest Park

S.11

@ Upson-Lee

S.18

@ Jones County

S.25

Bainbridge

O.2

@ Lee County

O.9

Harris County

O.23

Americus-Sumter

O.30 N.6

@ Thomas Co-Central @ Hardaway

2008 RESULTS

@ Central Forest Park Upson-Lee Jones County @ Bainbridge Lee County @ Harris County @ Americus-Sumter Thomas Co-Central Hardaway Glynn Academy Jonesboro Tucker

W E S T S I D E

W W W W W W W W W W W W L

BY THE NUMBERS

51-0 63-0 52-7 54-7 30-6 44-3 28-7 28-0 51-0 37-0 49-6 49-11 20-31

8

The Seminoles spent 8 weeks ranked number 1 in the AAAA poll last season. The state playoff loss to Tucker dropped Westside to number 4 in the final rankings.

Adrian Bentley

SEMINOLES FILE

HEAD COACH

Sheddrick Risper (1st year)

COACHING STAFF Joe Dupree, Hosea Laney, C.B. Cornett, Josh Grube, Marlin White, James Wright, Shawn Linderman, Chip Horton, Robert Cabe

2008 RECORD 12-1-0

LAST 3 YEARS 27-7-0

LAST 5 YEARS 39-14-0

STADIUM Ed Defore

REGION 1-AAAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS WR RB FS QB TE LB LB OL

Ronald Carswell (SR.) Robert Brown (JR.) DeAnthony Green (SR.) Cameron Jones (SR.) DaVonte’ Gilbert (SR.) Carlos Cave (SR.) Leo Williams (SR.) Dorian Byrd (SR.)

QB RB WR OL CB SS DL OL

Daniel Duhart (JR.) Adrian Bentley (SR.) Rick Merritt (JR.) Rakim Clowers (JR.) Richard Nash (SR.) Maurice Deal (SR.) Kwanza Burroughs (JR.) Neil Duncan (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE LB Julian Burnett, TE Kory Threat, WR Danny Madison, QB Orrin McFadden, RB Marcus Wilson

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

S E M I N O L E S Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

21


JONES COUNTY GREYHOUNDS

2008 WRAP: The season started fast for Jones County in the Dwight Jones era. Two quick wins out of the gate left the ‘Hounds undefeated, but the region schedule took it’s toll as Jones County dropped six straight and eventually closed the season at 3-7.

DEFENSE: The defense will not be very big so Coach Jones hopes he can invoke an “attacking style that creates havoc.” The ‘Hounds will play a 3-5-3 with Clay West and Clarke Sowell alternating at the nose tackle spot. Jessie Solomon and Oscar Simmons will lineup at defensive end with Harley Williamson and Steven Crosby also in the mix. The linebackers will be led by returning starter Chase Lundy who will join Trevor Pruitt, Eunice West, and sophomores Donald Flemming and Blake Connolly. In the secondary Corey Solomon, Cody Lanford, and Chaz Smith lead the way but many players will likely see action.

OFFENSE: Jones County lost only nine seniors from last years team but one of those was three-year starting quarterback Jake Robertson. Head coach Dwight Jones enters his second season at the helm and he’ll call on junior Cody Evans to quarterback his offense. Jones calls Evans a “tough kid” who got some experience last season when Robertson was injured. Joining Evans in the backfield will be speed- SPECIAL TEAMS: Zack Suarez is the ster Terrance Gore, Corey Solomon, leading candidate to place-kick with and Eunice West. Senior fullback Josh senior John Hurd the top punting canJames has shown tremendous im- didate. Return man Gore has unbeprovement. The receiving corps will be lievable speed and is always a threat young. Xavier Watson is just a sopho- to take one to the house. more but expected to start COACH JONES SAYS: at one wide receiver spot. “I think our guys finally understand what it Geordi Booker and Kenshaw means to work hard. We need to see some Robinson will likely battle for benefits from that hard work.” the other starting position. The offensive line should be better with almost everyone back. Senior Rashad Norman (260 WE THINK: The good news is that pounds) and Adrian Marsh (6’1, 275) the Greyhounds will be better this seagive the Greyhounds some bulk up son and Coach Jones thinks his team front. Oscar Simmons, Tanner Brooks, “will not be intimidated to play anyand Steven Crosby round out the front one.” The bad news is that the region five. Walker Perkins will start at tight is loaded with Westside, Bainbridge, end with Ross White and Cameron and Thomas County Central all early Thrasher seeing plenty of action. opponents for Jones County. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

Mitchell County

S.4

@ Calhoun County

S.11

@ Harris County

S.18

Westside

S.25

Thomas County Central

O.2

@ Bainbridge

O.9

Hardaway

O.16

@ Americus-Sumter

O.30 N.6

Lee County Upson-Lee J O N E S

22

2008 RESULTS

BY THE NUMBERS

@ Mitchell County Calhoun County Harris County @ Westside @ Thomas C-Central Bainbridge @ Hardaway Americus-Sumter @ Lee County

W W L L L L L L W

16-7 33-0 14-28 7-54 21-49 20-48 21-35 14-27 34-6

@ Upson-Lee

L 0-7

9

The most wins in a single season for Jones County is nine. The 1991 Greyhounds as well as the 2001 team each posted nine victories.

Terrance Gore

THE HOUNDS FILE

HEAD COACH

Dwight Jones (2nd year: 3-7-0) Overall (12th year: 53-62-0)

COACHING STAFF

Jay Jones, Lee Hamner, Jeff Ward, Jessie McMillian, Jason Page, Justin Rivers, Denny Bryant

2008 RECORD 3-7-0

LAST 3 YEARS 9-21-0

LAST 5 YEARS 15-36-0

STADIUM Greyhound Field

REGION 1-AAAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS RB LB DB RB QB OL DB OL

Corey Solomon (JR.) Blake Connolly (SO.) Tanner Bernard (JR.) Terrance Gore (SR.) Cody Evans (JR.) Chase Lundy (SR.) Cody Lanford (SO.) Oscar Simmons (SR.)

G R E Y H O U N D S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

Steven Crosby (JR.) Adrain Marsh (SR.) Rashad Norman (SR.) Xavier Watson (SO.) Walker Perkins (JR.) Josh James (SR.) Trace Scott (SR.) Cameron Thrasher (JR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE QB Jake Robertson, DB Devon Pace, DL Wesley Duncan, DL Chris Faulkner

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

C O U N T Y

OL DE C WR TE FB DB DB


The Lone Ranger First Presbyterian bucks tradition and decides to leave the GISA for the GHSA. BY BRAD BIBB

As the 2009-2010 school year begins and the excitement of another prep football season is upon us, there is a different “feel” in the air with autumn approaching, especially for teams in the fledgling GISA (Georgia Independent School Association). Throughout the years, several teams have gradually made the migration from the GISA to the older, more established GHSA (Georgia High School Association). Recent examples include Savannah Christian, Eagle’s Landing Christian Academy (McDonough), and Calvary Baptist (Savannah). Still, no Macon school has decided to make this transition, until now. One of the league’s true heavyweights is about to test the waters against the big boys, as First Presbyterian Day School will make the move to the GHSA after this swan song season in the GISA.

SWAN SONG

FPD Head Coach Greg Moore and his Vikings will test the waters against the GHSA following this season.

photograph by

ANDREW BROOKS

23


FPD’S MOVE TO GHSA The rumor mill has been circulating for several years and most pundits felt that the “big four” Macon private schools: FPD, Stratford, Tattnall, and Mt. De Sales would join forces and make the transition to the GHSA as one unit; a package deal if you will. In fact the Athletic Directors from each institution have been together on several occasions to discuss the pros and cons of a move to the GHSA. “We’ve been monitoring the situation for the last eight to ten years,” says long-time Stratford Athletic Director Grady Smith. “But we weren’t quite ready to make the move.” FPD must have thought differently. The school did not want to wait any longer; therefore, beginning in 2010, the Vikings will move to the GHSA. “The number one driving initiative for why we decided to go at this time is that we think this is the best way to fulfill the mission of this school,” said FPD Athletic Director and Head Football Coach Greg Moore. He added, “FPD didn’t jump up and say we’re going to join the GHSA because the A.D. decided we ought to. We’ve investigated this for years. This was an administrative decision that was unanimous from the administrative level.”

“They will be placed in a region that makes sense for them to go. It’s tough for them to travel to middle Georgia to play all of us.” George Walton is located in Monroe, Georgia between Athens and Atlanta. Pinecrest and Strong Rock are also located in metro Atlanta. George Walton and Pinecrest currently play AAA football just like FPD. When these three schools leave, the triple-A class will have only 13 schools participating in football. Truth is, the GISA has been struggling to keep enough athletic teams to support three classifications. The largest class, AAA barely has enough teams to conduct a full fledged football season. Last year there were only 17 teams in the triple-A classification. Trinity Christian was 1-9 in the regular season yet still made the playoffs. In fairness to the Dublin school, they shouldn’t even be competing at the AAA level because of their size. Same with John Milledge, too small to fairly compete in triple-A but forced to play there because of the dwindling number of schools. This season there will be only 16 teams competing as Central Fellowship decided to drop football. That means EVERY team will make the post season. Unless more teams join the association, the number drops to 13 next year. Even more reason for FPD to go now, “from an athletic concern, we move from a classification that fields about 13 schools to one that fields about seventy. That right there tells you we have work to do, but we’re excited about the challenge,” explains Moore. “We’re trying to take the kids in our school and put them in a larger, perhaps more competitive situation and do so while we can still try and teach them all of the principles and beliefs that align with the mission of this school. We had some concerns about the future of the GISA, but again that was not the driving force behind our decision.”

No one seems to question the reason for FPD’s decision. The thing that might be most puzzling is why did the school appear to have “abandoned” the other three. Moore says that was certainly not the intention, “the question for us was, if the other schools are not ready, does that mean we should follow suit and not make the best decision for our school?” The other schools have a different take. “I think it would have been easier if all four schools had set some sort of deadline for a final decision on whether to go or not,” said Tattnall Head Football Coach and former Headmaster Barney Hester. “We had a lot of discussion about all of us going together,” he added. Smith agreed, “My first reaction was disappointment. We thought that the Macon schools would stick together and do the same thing and the same time.” “I think some feelings were hurt,” FPD’s football heritage dates back to 1973 says Mt. De Sales Athletic Director when the first Viking team under Phil McLeRobert Slocum. “now that it’s been roy went 5-3. In 36 seasons, the Vikings done, I think the heads of school at have posted 264 wins, 152 losses, and Mt. De Sales, Tattnall, and Stratford 5 ties. FPD has claimed 12 region titles will take this opportunity to let FPD and 2 state championships. In 1980 Bobby test the waters and see how this Brown (below) guided the Vikings to a 23plays out. Then we can make our 21 overtime win over Pinewood Christian. decision.” In 1985 Mark Farriba led the Vikes to the

VIKING HISTORY

First Presbyterian will not be the only GISA defection next season. George Walton Academy, Pinecrest Academy, and Strong Rock Christian School will also bolt from the GISA. “I understand George Walton moving and I’m surprised they didn’t go sooner,” says Hester.

24

championship in his very first season.FPD finished the season 12-1-0 which remains the best record in school history.

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

It’s likely that FPD will participate in Class A (the lowest classification) when they move to the GHSA. At this time the school is still not sure what region they will join. The GHSA will go through a realignment next season. This is another reason why FPD made the decision to go ahead and make the move. The realignment will be made based on the size of the member institutions and FPD’s high school population of about 275 kids will undoubtedly put them in Class A. Current GHSA Class A schools all have an enrollment of less than 525 students. There are currently three Class A regions that feature teams from our area. Region 2 members include: Dooly County, Hawkinsville, Irwin County, Telfair


FPD’S MOVE TO GHSA County, Turner County, Twiggs County, and Wilcox County. As you can see, that region currently fields seven teams and moving FPD there would make sense because it would give the region the optimum eight teams (assuming all current members remain after realignment). Wilkinson County is currently in Region 7-A which has 8 schools total making it unlikely that FPD would go there. The Warriors currently compete against: Aquinas, GMC, Glascock County, Hancock Central, Lincoln County, Warren County, and Washington Wilkes. Conversely, Taylor County in Butler competes in Region 4-A which features 10 teams and stretches to Columbus. That again appears an unlikely choice for the Vikings. Regardless of where they go, the response from almost everyone in the FPD camp has been, “overwhelmingly positive” says Moore. “I think there are a handful of concerns,” he added. “The fear of the unknown. What region will we play in? Who will we play? Will they be better than us? All of those questions create concerns, but it’s only a handful of people who seem to want to hold on to the long standing way we’ve been doing things.” By going solo, FPD eliminates (at least for the time being) the possibility that the Macon schools might all be placed in the same region

“We will have some problems in the GISA with football scheduling over the next couple of years.” —TATTNALL’S BARNEY HESTER (or sub-region) if all decide to join the GHSA. For now, the Vikings will have to develop new rivalries and based on where they’re placed, FPD could lose some of what they’ve developed during their GISA tenure. Robert Slocum knows very well about changing associations. Mt. De Sales used to be in the Georgia High School Association. The Cavaliers joined the GISA in 1980 after a successful run in the GHSA in which the school won three state football championships. One factor why MDS decided to move to the GISA was to develop relationships with schools that were closer proximity wise to their Macon campus. Slocum thinks the move has been successful. “What we hear from our parents is that they enjoy coming to the games and being able to drop their kids off and not worry about them or what they’re getting into. They like to be able to go to the other side of the stadium and see people they know, or may even work with. There’s a social aspect to the game. There are some places outside of Macon where that might change.” He added, “if Mt. De Sales and Tattnall are playing a region game and FPD is traveling to say Monticello or Hawkinsville, the FPD kids and parents may decide to stay home and go to our game instead of traveling to places where they don’t have those relationships. The traveling may be more difficult than they (FPD) imagine.”

So where does the future lie for the GISA? That question has local administrators scratching their heads and trying to grasp the fact that their league may be running out of steam. Grady Smith has been involved with the Independent school association for almost 40 years. He was a young coach at Stratford when his school was a member of the SEAIS (which later became the GISA). He has seen almost 50 schools disband totally (like River North, Jonesco, and just recently Monroe Academy) not to mention countless others who migrated to the public school association. Smith is accustomed to seeing change within his organization but he’s not certain the future of the GISA is on solid ground, “we still have enough to compete but two years from now, that may not be the case. Presbyterian’s decision has brought the other three of us closer together. We’ll try to keep each other informed.” Meanwhile, Hester also foresees difficult times ahead but think’s a small rule change might facilitate a re-birth in private school athletics, “We will have some problems in the GISA with football scheduling over the next couple of years.” But he adds, “What I would like to see happen is that somehow we could partner with the GHSA and allow us to schedule games against each other. Right now the GHSA will not allow us to do this. We would love to stay in the GISA but also play nonregion games against GHSA schools in athletic competition. They do it in South Carolina and I would love to see it done here.” For now, that compromise will have to wait as the new season is upon us. It will be interesting to watch the developments of First Presbyterian and their cavalier (no pun intended) approach to joining the GHSA. Still the Vikings have nothing but high regard for the folks they’re about to leave behind. “We have nothing but the utmost respect for the people we’ve competed against,” says Moore. “Our plans are to enjoy this upcoming year in the GISA and at the same time we have to make some transition plans to get ready to make the move to the GHSA.” A move that still has many people buzzing throughout central Georgia and will keep the spotlight solely on the Vikings for the next couple of years. “We’ll be watching FPD. We’re all in the same business. We have a good relationship and we wish them the best,” echoed Smith.

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

25


26

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009


CLASS AAA FORECASTED FINISH

photo courtesy: Ted McCollough

1. Deerfield-Windsor 2. Tattnall 3. Westfield 4. Southland 5. Stratford 6. George Walton 7. FPD 8. Mt. De Sales PLAYERS TO WATCH PLAYER

to the AAA championship last season and while the Knights lost many players from that title team, they do return superb running back Tony Zenon. Tattnall may or may not have talented DeAndre Smelter back. Smelter has been contemplating a baseball only senior season since he’s expected to be a top draft choice next summer. Without Smelter, the Trojans will be less intimidating, especially defensively. Westfield made it to the title game last season but the Hornets lost many players to graduation. John Lee rushed for over a thousand yards and returns for coach Ronnie Jones. Southland welcomes new coach Tim Goodin who spent the past two seasons at Randolph-Southern. The Raiders bring back some talented players and should be a factor. Stratford will be paced by two-thousand yard rusher Marquez Lemon, but the Eagles will be very young and operate with a new quarterback. George Walton has a lot of experience retuning including QB Ty Shellnutt. Like George Walton, FPD plays it’s final season in the GISA. The Vikings have senior Ryan Smith back at quarterback and they should improve off last season’s 3-8 mark. Mt. De Sales returns several players including Chris Swain at fullback and the Cavaliers should be better.

2008 PLAYOFF BRACKET

Deerfield-Windsor surprisingly marched

POSITION

SCHOOL

Marquez Lemon

RB

Stratford

Tony Zenon

RB

Deerfield-W.

John Lee

FB

Westfield

Will Jarriel

QB

Pinewood

Chris Swain

FB

Mt. De Sales

G. Walton

7

Stratford

21

Pinewood

7

Westfield

33

Tattnall

47

Pinecrest

0

Stratford

14 Westfield 12

Westfield

58

Deerfield-Windsor Tattnall

3 Deer-Wind 17

Deer-Wind 49 Deer-Wind 14 Holy Spirit 13


TATTNALL 2008 WRAP: The Trojans opened the season with a win over Deerfield-Windsor, and eventually ran their record to 12-0. But Tattnall was stunned by the Knights in the GISA AAA semi-finals 14-3. It was the first time all season that the Trojans were held below 20 points. The 12-1 season was bittersweet for Trojan fans.

DEFENSE: If Smelter plays, the Tattnall defense will be as good as anyone. If he doesn’t, there will be a huge hole in the secondary. Andrew Parker (missed last season with injury) and Cole Waddell will join John Rader and Connor Alford in the backfield. Hester knows this unit is young but feels they are very athletic. Hank Avery and Josh Boyd are the top linebacking prospects. Up-front, Tyler Heath, Logan Easterwood, and Hunter Wilkinson who was the Trojans second leading tackler last season all return.

OFFENSE: The big question for Head Coach Barney Hester has been centered around all-star performer DeAndre Smelter. Will he play football this season after spending his summer traveling the country as part of a national baseball all-star team? Smelter SPECIAL TEAMS: Tattnall returns has indicated his love of baseball and experience in the kicking game with he’s talented enough to perhaps be returning starters at both placea first-round draft pick next summer. kicker: Nathan Duffield and punter: In the meantime the Trojans are pre- Blake Spence back. Cole Waddell will paring for their season opener not be called on to lead the return game certain if Smelter will play. Couple should Smelter not play. the Smelter situation with the fact that Tattnall lost a bunch of COACH HESTER SAYS: talented folks and you can “We’ll have more team speed this year. We’re see why Coach Hester is a excited and I feel good about the potential of little perplexed beginning this football team.” this campaign. Ryan Bartholomew, a transfer who played QB at Rutland last season, and sophomore John Rader WE THINK: The Trojans may not are the quarterback candidates. Cole be the overall favorite to win the AAA Waddell and Blake Turner are com- title but they will still be a solid team. peting at running back. Ham Goodner While the offense may need to gain and Blake Garrison lead the receiving some seasoning, expect the defense corps. Up-front, the offensive line is to be sound. If Smelter plays, Tattnall new with Ben Avery, Hank Avery, and could find themselves in the title hunt. Mason Selby likely starters. If he doesn’t, who knows? 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ Deerfield- Windsor

S.4

@ Southland

S.11

Westfield

S.18

@ John Milledge

S.25

Windsor

O.2

Mt. Vernon

O.9

George Walton

O.16

@ Mt. de Sales

O.23

FPD

O.30

@ Stratford

2008 RESULTS

Deerfield-Windsor Southland Westfield John Milledge Windsor Mt. Vernon George Walton Mt. de Sales FPD Stratford Southland Pinecrest Deerfield-Windsor

T A T T N A L L

28

W W W W W W W W W W W W L

BY THE NUMBERS

20-7 31-7 28-0 63-0 34-7 49-13 42-0 23-13 40-0 35-2 37-7 47-0 3-14

12

Tattnall has averaged 12 wins in each of the last three seasons. During that time period, Tattnall has posted a remarkable 36-2 record.

T R O J A N S Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

Logan Easterwood

TROJANS FILE

HEAD COACH

Barney Hester (28th year: 271-64-7) Overall (35th year: 287-120-8)

COACHING STAFF

Jeff Ratliff, Jarrett Moore, Tyler van Dusen, Tim Pruitt, Walt Miller

2008 RECORD 12-1-0

LAST 3 YEARS 36-2-0

LAST 5 YEARS 49-10-2

STADIUM Jack Baynes

REGION GISA 2-AAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS LB LB DL DE DL WR WR K

Josh Boyd (SR.) Hank Avery (SR.) Hunter Wilkinson (JR.) Logan Easterwood (SR.) Tyler Heath (SR.) Ham Goodner (SR.) Blake Garrison (SR.) Nathan Duffield (SR.)

P DB DB DE RB QB C RB

Blake Spence (SR.) Andrew Parker (JR.) John Rader (SO.) Andrew Layson (SO.) Cole Waddell (SO.) Ryan Bartholomew (SR.) Ben Avery (JR.) Sam Kent (SO.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE QB Jordan Brooks, LB Harrison Gore, DT Colby Andrews, OL Tray Roquemore, DE Josh Windham, RB Colby Bond

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

photo courtesy: Ted McCollough

TROJANS


C AVA L I E R S

2008 WRAP: It was an up and down season for the Cavaliers who finished the campaign at 5-6. The Cavs lost their opening round playoff game to Westfield 28-0 making it two losses against the Hornets last season. The offensive and defensive fronts were hit hard by graduation.

DEFENSE: The Cavaliers will line up in a 4-4 defense and the front four will be very inexperienced. They will miss Michael Singleton who graduated. Cody Griffin returns and offers some senior leadership. He’ll be joined by sophomore John Garrett Abernathy. The linebackers feature Deeb who was the Cavs second leading tackler last season. Warren Brooks and Chris Swain will also play linebacker. The secondary will have familiar faces with Jamiah Walker a three-year starter at cornerback. Wil Bentley will play the other corner while Brad Smith and Myles Swain man the safety positions.

OFFENSE: Head Coach Robert Slocum enters his 19th season on the Cavaliers sideline and he likes the makeup of his skill position players on the offensive side of the ball. Even though two-year starting quarterback Rosser McCallie graduated, Brad Smith is ready to assume command. Slocum is comfortable with Smith’s decision making abil- SPECIAL TEAMS: The kicking game ity and thinks he will be able to handle will also see some turnover. Warrunning the spread offense. Jamiah ren Brooks appears likely to succeed Walker returns to the backfield at a Whit Young as the place kicker while running back spot while Chris Swain is Wil Bentley will punt. Jamiah Walker back at fullback. The Cavaliers have a and Chris Swain will be the top return couple of talented receivers including guys. 6’4” sophomore Josh Abrams COACH SLOCUM SAYS: as well as Wil Bentley. “We’re excited about the skill people we have Mt. De Sales will run the opreturning, but our offensive and defensive tion and while Slocum thinks line is inexperienced.” his quarterback can do the job, the young offensive line must gel and mature quickly. Junior Tim Rohan will start at center. WE THINK: The Cavaliers have some He’ll be flanked by fellow juniors Taylor good athletes offensively but the ofKirby, Ethan Wallace, and Chase Ben- fensive and defensive fronts will be son. Senior Mike Deeb is also return- suspect. If those units can develop ing and Slocum knows Deeb will be a quickly, Mt. De Sales might be able to leader on both sides of the ball. Kyle make a playoff run. The region race Patch and John Garrett Abernathy will will be challenging with Tattnall clearly each see action at tight end. the front-runner. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ Mt. Vernon

S.4

Westfield

S.11

Pinecrest

S.18

George Walton

S.25

@ Southland

O.3

@ John Milledge

O.9

Tiftarea

O.16

Tattnall

O.23 O.30

@ Stratford @ FPD M T .

30

2008 RESULTS

Mt. Vernon @ Westfield @ Pinecrest @ George Walton Southland John Milledge @ Tiftarea @ Tattnall Stratford FPD @ Westfield

W L W L L W W L L W L

BY THE NUMBERS

34-0 7-28 35-7 18-24 14-28 45-14 12-0 13-23 10-21 21-7 0-28

14

Blake Mahoney rushed for 14 touchdowns to lead the Cavaliers last season, but the senior running back transferred to Howard and will play for the Huskies this season.

Brad Smith

C AVA L I E R S F I L E

HEAD COACH

Robert Slocum (19th year: 107-104-2)

COACHING STAFF Todd Freeman, Duane Hunter, Glenn Shelby, John Drake, Jim Massey, Pat Patterson, James Hickenbotham, Carl Perazzola

2008 RECORD 5-6-0

LAST 3 YEARS 10-21-0

LAST 5 YEARS 17-37-0

STADIUM Mike Garvin

REGION GISA 2-AAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB DL OL RB FB DL WR DB

Brad Smith (JR.) Mike Deeb (SR.) Warren Brooks (SR.) Jamiah Walker (SR.) Chris Swain (JR.) Cody Griffin (SR.) Josh Abrams (SO.) Wil Bentley (SO.)

S A L E S

C A V A L I E R S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

J-Garrett Abernathy (SO.) Kyle Patch (SO.) Chris Moxley (SO.) Myles Swain (SO.) Jarmez Eason (SR.) Taylor Kirby (JR.) Ethan Wallace (JR.) Chris Sykes (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE OL Thaddeus Watterman, QB Ross McCallie, OL Justin Clay, LB Taylor Moorhouse, DL Michael Singleton, K Whit Young

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

D E

DE TE LB DB DB OL OL DL

photo courtesy: Ted McCollough

MT. DE SALES


F.P.D. 2008 WRAP: The Vikings struggled to a 3-8 mark, their first losing season under Greg Moore and their lowest win total since 1995. The Vikings were 3-3 before dropping their final 5 games. They also failed to win a region contest. FPD does return some experience so the Vikings are optimistic about notching more victories this season.

DEFENSE: The Vikings will be forced to use many two-way players including lineman David Lambert, and Corey Funk on the defensive front. The linebackers will be paced by Kyle McCallum with Taylor Bridges, Nick Mullis, and Ben DuBose all seeing plenty of action. FPD lost a pair of secondary standouts in Kemper Morton and Andrew Orr but Wesley Gilbert, Taylor Harden, Matthew Davis, and James Pound hope to fill those shoes in the defensive backfield. One thing the Vikings must improve on, tackling. “We need to get better at the fundamentals of getting off blocks and tackling,” says Moore.

OFFENSE: The Vikings would like to spread the field and allow their quarterback duo of Ryan Smith and Clay Martin to make plays. Smith is a senior and has seen plenty of action since his sophomore year, while Martin filled in admirably last season when Smith was injured. Says Moore, “we SPECIAL TEAMS: Murray Ricketson feel good about the quarterback posi- inherits both the punting and place tion with either of them under center.” kicking duties replacing Jon Adams. While the QB position seems solid, Ryan Smith and Matthew Davis will the Vikes will miss their big play re- likely be the Vikings top return guys. ceivers as both Zach Jones (a walk-on with the new Georgia State COACH MOORE SAYS: program), and Robbie Ballard “If this senior class will be strong in their have both graduated. James leadership role, we will have a good year. As Pound and Taylor Harden are usual, we don’t have enough depth to survive the leading receiving canditoo many injuries.” dates. The backfield features Nick Mullis, Taylor Jones, and Wesley Gilbert vying for playing time. WE THINK: The Vikings final seaUp front, Hunter Hawkins leads a se- son in GISA may be very challenging. nior offensive line with Jack Meadows, Coach Moore is counting on his senior Evan Teipel, David Lambert, and Dan- leadership, but the Vikings will need iel Dupree expected to start. Corey to get much better in order to comFunk is the projected tight end. Moore pete with region favorites Tattnall and says: “we need to take better care of Stratford. the ball and we need to block better.” 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ Brookwood

S.4

Deerfield-Windsor

S.11

@ George Walton

S.18

Arlington Christian

S.25

@ Trinity

O.2

Southland

O.9

@ Westfield

O.16

Stratford

O.23 O.30

@ Tattnall Mt. De Sales

2008 RESULTS

Brookwood @ Deerfield-Windsor George Walton @ Charlotte Latin Trinity @ Southland Westfield @ Stratford Tattnall @ Mt. De Sales @ Deerfield-Windsor

W L L L W W L L L L L

BY THE NUMBERS

34-27 6-27 14-30 0-35 32-13 14-7 7-28 7-38 0-40 7-21 14-41

37

This will be the 37th (and final) season that FPD will compete in the private school association (SEAIS, GISA). Next season the Vikings play their first season in the GHSA.

photo courtesy: Andrew Brooks

VIKINGS

Ryan Smith

VIKINGS FILE

HEAD COACH

Greg Moore (10th year: 73-41)

COACHING STAFF Rennie Atkinson, Chad Alligood, Sy Jones, Justin Leslein, Ken Garvin, Justin Lyles

2008 RECORD 3-8-0

LAST 3 YEARS 19-16-0

LAST 5 YEARS 38-24-0

STADIUM George Johnson Memorial

REGION GISA 2-AAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB LB OL DL WR DB DL

Ryan Smith (SR.) Taylor Jones (SR.) Nick Mullis (SR.) David Lambert (SR.) Hunter Hawkins (SR.) James Pound (SR.) Taylor Harden (SR.) Tyler Wheeler (SR.)

DE DB OL QB RB LB OL DL

Corey Funk (SR.) Kyle McCallum (SR.) Jack Meadows (SR.) Clay Martin (JR.) Ben DuBose (SO.) Taylor Bridges (JR.) Evan Teipel (SR.) Nathan Reed (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE WR Zach Jones, LB Kemper Morton, OL Russ Barry, DB Andre Orr, WR Robbie Ballard, K Jon Adams

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

F . P . D .

V I K I N G S Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

31


STRATFORD 2008 WRAP: The Eagles notched nine wins before a disappointing 5814 blasting at Westfield in the state semifinals. Tailback Marquez Lemon ran for 2356 yards and earned all-state honors as a sophomore. Quarterback Culby Hinson and Linebacker David Haugabrook both graduated leaving big shoes to fill.

DEFENSE: The Eagles will have many two-way players and Matthew Waldorf and Drew Akacki will see plenty of action. Waldorf was an all-region performer last season and returns to anchor the defensive line. J.B. Strauss, Charlie Grossnickle, Osii Mbata, and Mike Fox will all see playing time on the defensive front which should be sound. At linebacker, the Eagles will certainly miss leading tackler David Haugabrook (a walk-on at Florida Atlantic). Akacki will join John White and Marquez Lemon while the secondary features Christopher Geesling as the top returnee.

OFFENSE: On the offensive side, everything starts with Marquez Lemon (averaged 180 yards/game last season) but Head Coach Rodney Collins knows he must have good quarterback play to take the heat off his sensational tailback. Senior John White will move from his wide receiver spot and inherit the QB duties vacated by SPECIAL TEAMS: Junior kicker Ryan the departed Culby Hinson. Lemon will Ridley may be as good as anyone in be joined in the backfield by junior Da- the area. He returns after starting his vion Randall. The Eagles will be very sophomore season. The punting duyoung with 25 of their 39 players un- ties will go to Christopher Geesling derclassmen but up-front seniors J.B. who replaces Culby Hinson. Strauss and Matthew Waldorf COACH COLLINS SAYS: give Stratford some solid “This will be one of our youngest teams. We leadership and stability. Juhave good talent, but our younger players nior TE Drew Akacki returns. are going to have to grow up in a hurry.” He was the second leading receiver for the Eagles last year. Christopher Geesling who was the team’s top receiver re- WE THINK: The Eagles will be young turns at a one wide-out position. but explosive with Lemon in the backStratford will look to run the football field. If Stratford gets good quarterand Lemon is as good as anyone in back play and the younger players the state, but the Eagles must develop mature quickly, the Eagles may chala passing game to keep opposing de- lenge the top teams in the class like fenses honest. Tattnall and Deerfield-Windsor. 2008 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ Trinity

S.4

@ George Walton

S.11

@ Deerfield-Windsor

S.18

Southland

S.25

Westfield

O.2

Gatewood

O.9

@ Pinewood

O.16

@ FPD

O.23 O.30

Mt. De Sales Tattnall

2007 RESULTS

Trinity George Walton Deerfield-Windsor @ Southland @ Westfield @ Gatewood Pinewood FPD @ Mt. De Sales @ Tattnall Brookwood @ George Walton Westfield

W W W L L W W W W L W W L

S T R A T F O R D

32

BY THE NUMBERS

42-13 24-14 27-24 20-29 14-28 36-12 42-0 38-7 21-10 2-35 28-28 21-7 14-58

8

Stratford has won 8 state championships over four decades. The Eagles claimed 3 titles during the ‘70’s, one in the ‘80’s, 2 in the ‘90’s, and 2 so far this decade.

E A G L E S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

photo courtesy: frank kimball

EAGLES

Matthew Waldorf

EAGLES FILE

HEAD COACH

Rodney Collins (18th year: 125-78-2) Overall: (31st year: 206-135-4)

COACHING STAFF

David Bailey, Walt Mays, Billy Sellers, Miles Pippin, Ross Bridges

2008 RECORD 9-4-0

LAST 3 YEARS 18-15-0

LAST 5 YEARS 35-23-0

STADIUM Eagle

REGION GISA 2-AAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS RB QB K OL DL TE WR OL

Marquez Lemon (JR.) John White (SR.) Ryan Ridley (JR.) J.B. Strauss (SR.) Matthew Waldorf (SR.) Drew Akacki (JR.) Christopher Geeslin (SR.) Ford Neel (SR.)

OL DL RB WR C DB LB TE

Osii Mbata (SR.) Mac Leskowsky (JR.) Davion Randall (JR.) Craig O’Neal (SR.) Reed Puckett (SO.) Brandon Massey (JR.) R.C. Brown (SO.) Robert Lind (JR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE QB Culby Hinson, LB David Haugabrook, OL Howell Jarrard, DL Austin Jones, G Robert Lovett, C Harrison Parker

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM


WESTFIELD 2008 WRAP: The Hornets made a magical run all the way to the GISA AAA championship game before losing a hard fought 17-12 contest to Deerfield-Windsor. Ronnie Jones’ squad finished the season with an 11-3 record with two of their losses coming at the hands of the eventual state champions.

DEFENSE: The defensive front will see many players flip from the offensive side. Leavengood and Meaders will join fellow seniors Garrett Baker and Nick Bekkers on the line. Coach Jones may see a linebacker by committee strategy with Drew Payne slated for an inside position. Andrew Peake, Matt Coleman, plus sophomores Jordan Minor and Tyler Wainright will all compete for playing time. Wesley Rust is back at a cornerback spot. Robert Brooks, Alex Smith, and Josh Mullins will likely make-up the rest of the secondary.

OFFENSE: The Hornets lost a talented group to graduation and finding replacements will be almost impossible to Head Coach Ronnie Jones. Gone from the state runners-up are: quarterback Casey Young, running backs Joel Revis and Taylor Crook, and receivers John Peake and John McCord. SPECIAL TEAMS: Daniel MontgomWhile the cupboard appears bare, ery, who was the backup to Joel Revis Westfield does return big fullback John last season is the leading candidate to Lee who rushed for over 1300 yards handle place kicking duties. Wesley last season. He’ll be taking handoffs Rust and sophomore Wayne O’Neal from junior quarterback Wesley Rust, are capable punters. John Lee will be who also throws well. Look for seniors the Hornets lead return man. Cole Crouch, Robert Brooks, and Kenneth Brown as well as junior COACH JONES SAYS: Bryce Moody to all see action “We have experience on the line. If we have in the Hornets backfield. The 2 or 3 people come through at the skill posireceivers are young with jutions, we will be competitive.” niors Josh Mullins, and Alex Smith likely competing for playing time with senior Cody Walker. The offensive line does bring WE THINK: Ronnie Jones has been back plenty of experience with five a master of taking teams that don’t seniors: Will O’Neal at center, Andrew seem to have championship caliber Peake and Chris Meaders at the tackle talent and turning them into state title spots, and Drew Payne and Matt Cole- contenders. Case in point, last year’s man at the guard positions. Junior squad. This team has enough senior Wesley Murph will line up at tight end leadership to make the Hornets anothand he too brings experience. er dangerous team come playoff time. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

John Milledge

S.4

@ Mt. De Sales

S.11

@ Tattnall

S.18

Brentwood

S.25

@ Stratford

O.2

@ Bulloch

O.9

FPD

O.16

@ Brookwood

O.23 O.30

Deerfield-Windsor Southland

2008 RESULTS

@ John Milledge Mt. De Sales Tattnall @ Brentwood Stratford Bulloch @ FPD Brookwood @ Deerfield-Windsor @ Southland Mt. De Sales @ Pinewood @ Stratford @ Deerfield-Windsor

W W L W W W W W L W W W W L

W E S T F I E L D

34

BY THE NUMBERS

37-0 28-7 0-28 40-7 28-14 42-10 28-7 42-28 3-6 21-3 28-0 33-7 58-14 12-17

7

The number 7 has been unlucky for the Hornets. With last year’s loss to DeerfieldWindsor in the state championship game, Westfield has been to the title matchup 7 times without a win.

H O R N E T S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

photo courtesy: Andy Crabb

HORNETS

John Lee

HORNETS FILE

HEAD COACH

Ronnie Jones (17th year: 142-55-3) Overall (262-111-6)

COACHING STAFF

Jamey Watson, Jake Walls, Chad Ekey, Rob Fitzpatrick, Kyle Barfield, Troy Cunningham

2008 RECORD 11-3-0

LAST 3 YEARS 19-14-1

LAST 5 YEARS 34-23-1

STADIUM Marvin Arrington

REGION GISA 3-AAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS DE FB OL OL LB QB OL RB

Andrew Peake (SR.) John Lee (JR.) Ashton Leavengood (SR.) Chris Meaders (SR.) Drew Payne (SR.) Wesley Rust (JR.) Matt Coleman (SR.) Cole Crouch (SR.)

OL TE DB WR DL WR DL DB

Will O’Neal (SR.) Wesley Murph (JR.) Robert Brooks (SR.) Josh Mullins (JR.) Garrett Baker (SR.) Cody Walker (SR.) Nick Bekkers (SR.) Alex Smith (JR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE LB Jarrod Taylor, WR John Peake, QB Casey Young, RB Joel Revis, LB Taylor Crook, C Jay Hadden

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM


JOHN MILLEDGE 2008 WRAP: The Trojans held their own against GISA schools similar in size but struggled mightily against the bigger AAA schools like Westfield, Tattnall and Mt. de Sales. The team did win three games and made the state playoffs where they lost 27-7 to Holy Spirit in the first round.

DEFENSE: The Trojans play a lot of people both ways which means the defense can get worn down especially when facing the likes of Tattnall, George Walton and Westfield. Sophomore Brandon Bush is a weight room fanatic according to Marchman. He will man the nose guard position as the Trojans look to fill the shoes of the departed Garrett Smith. Senior Mason Babb should also help out up front. The linebacking corps will surely miss Ben Prestwood who graduated. Senior Cole Breiner is back and expected to lead that group. In the secondary, Hunter Burgamy and junior Frank Hines will be heavily counted on.

OFFENSE: Head coach Don Marchman and offensive coordinator J.T. Wall will use the I-formation and the spread offense. Wall played on an SEC Championship team at Georgia and he’s spent a lot of time studying what the Bulldogs do in order to teach aspects of the offense to his young Trojan team. The quarterback spot features an open competition between SPECIAL TEAMS: Senior Lee Simpjunior Derren McGiboney who went son is a very capable kicker who prointo fall practice with a slight edge vides the Trojans with a nice weapon and sophomore Ryan Blizzard. The in close games. Josh Hartzell will hanrunning back position is in capable dle the punting duties. hands with seniors Josh Hartzell and Hunter Burgamy set to get COACH MARCHMAN SAYS: the majority of the carries. ” We’ve got a good hard-working group and Sophomore John Thrower I’m confident we will improve. We’ve got a is a lot bigger and stronger rough stretch in the schedule that we must according to Marchman and survive but I think we’ll finish up okay.” should help open holes form his fullback position. Senior Johnny Pittman and junior Frank WE THINK: Realistically the Trojans Hines will look to make plays from the don’t have the numbers to compete wide receiver position. The leader of with some of the heavyweights on the offensive line will be junior center their schedule. What they do have are Gavin Kopel. Brandon Bush is another enough athletes to hold their own in strong presence up front while Foster Region 4AAA and they should once Deariso is small but plays with a lot of again be a factor in the region race. heart according to his coach. 2008 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ Westfield

S.4

Edmund Burke

S.11

@ Brentwood

S.18

Tattnall

S.25

@ George Walton

O.2

Mt. De Sales

O.16

Gatewood

O.23

@ Pinewood

O.30

Trinity

2007 RESULTS

Westfield @ Edmund Burke Brentwood @ Tattnall George Walton @ Mt. De Sales @ Gatewood Pinewood @ Trinity Holy Spirit

L T W L L L W L W L

BY THE NUMBERS

0-37 20-20 10-0 0-63 14-40 14-45 9-6 17-33 35-7 7-27

7

This is the second stint as head coach at JMA for Don Marchman. He previously spent 7 years as Trojans head coach from 1988-1994.

Derren McGiboney

TROJANS FILE

HEAD COACH

Don Marchman (8th year: 45-34-1) Overall: (22nd year: 120-107-5)

COACHING STAFF

Gary Sanders, Steve James, J.T. Wall, Thomas Craig, Ryan McCoy

2008 RECORD 3-6-1

LAST 3 YEARS 12-17-2

LAST 5 YEARS 27-24-3

STADIUM Trojan Field

REGION GISA 4-AAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB QB RB RB FB WR C

Derren McGiboney (JR.) Ryan Blizzard (SO.) Josh Hartzell (SR.) Hunter Burgamy (SR.) John Thrower (SO.) Johnny Pittman (SR.) Gavin Kopel (JR.)

OL LB DL LB OL DB K

Foster Feariso (SR.) Cole Breiner (SR.) Mason Babb (SR.) Chris Mims (JR.) Brandon Bush (SO.) Frank Hines (JR.) Lee Simpson (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE QB Thomas Smith, FB Jase Stubbs, OL Garrett Smith, LB Ben Prestwood

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

J O H N

M I L L E D G E

T R O J A N S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

35

photo courtesy: Union Recorder

TROJANS


TRINITY 2008 WRAP: 2008 proved to be a tough season for the Crusaders. They lost much of their offense when Colby Jackson took his talents to North Carolina State and their forced move into the GISA AAA Classification proved disastrous as Trinity went 1-10. Head coach Steve Price left the school after several successful seasons and was replaced by John Callahan.

DEFENSE: Coach Callahan hopes the defense will spend less time on the field than they did in 2008. Because of limited numbers, many people will spend time on both sides of the line so Callahan is hopeful his offense can control the ball and help keep the defense fresh especially in the second half of games. Linebacker Stuart Taylor is gone from last year’s unit but juniors Matt Alligood and Sam Green will spearhead the Crusaders defense. There is some inexperience in the defensive backfield but look for Patrick Evans and Josh Ward to anchor the secondary.

OFFENSE: John Callahan brings the Triple Option offense with him as he gets ready to begin his first year at the Trinity helm. Callahan met Georgia Tech head coach Paul Johnson at a clinic when Johnson was head coach at the Naval Academy. He learned the SPECIAL TEAMS: This could be a Triple Option from Johnson and hopes strength for Trinity in 2009. Punter to use successfully at Trinity. Junior Chris Hobbs is back as is place kicker quarterback Chris Hobbs will be the Jon Luke Cannada. Both have strong man who will make the option of- legs and the potential to be difference fense go. Hobbs has experience hav- makers in close games. ing spent time at QB in 2008. Callahan also plans on employing a COACH CALLAHAN SAYS: bevy of running backs with “I’m impressed with our quickness across the senior Josh Ward leading the board. We’re not real big so our overall physicharges and several undercal size is a concern.” classmen including: Patrick Evans, Jon Luke Cannada and Cole Benton all seeing plenty of action. Callahan likes what WE THINK: The Crusaders may he sees in junior Matthew Weigel at struggle in the early part of the 2009 wide receiver. The first year head season. Mastering the Triple Option ofcoach also believes Cody Bennett and fense could take some time and Chris Holden Shriver can get the job done at Hobbs must prove a quick study runtight end. Senior Trey Chambers and ning the attack. This is a very young junior Will Diers will anchor the line. team with few seniors so developing leaders will be key. 2008 SCHEDULE

A.28

Stratford

S.4

@ Brentwood

S.11

@ Bulloch

S.18

Robert Toombs

S.25

FPD

O.2

Pinecrest

O.9

@ Deerfield-Windsor

O.16

Pinewood

O.23 O.30

@ Gatewood @ John Milledge

2007 RESULTS

@ Stratford Brentwood Bulloch @ Robert Toombs @ FPD @ Pinecrest Deerfield-Windsor @ Pinewood Gatewood John Milledge @ Pinecrest

BY THE NUMBERS

13-42 0-21 13-19 14-28 13-32 14-35 8-39 16-34 9-6 7-35 7-28

10

By jumping from GISA Class AA to Class AAA, The Crusaders went from 10 wins in the 2007 season to a school worst 10 losses in 2008.

Chris Hobbs

CRUSADERS FILE

HEAD COACH

John Callahan (1st year)

COACHING STAFF Jay Andrews, Jeremy Blackstock, Jay Couey,

2008 RECORD 1-10-0

LAST 3 YEARS 23-13-0

LAST 5 YEARS 43-19-0

STADIUM Cleve Warnock

REGION GISA 4-AAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB RB RB DB WR

Chris Hobbs (JR.) Patrick Evans (SO.) Jon Luke Cannada (JR.) Cole Benton (JR.) Josh Ward (SR.) Matthew Weigel (JR.)

C R U S A D E R S Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

TE TE OL OL LB LB

Cody Bennett (SR.) Holden Shriver (JR.) Trey Chambers (SR.) Will Diers (JR.) Matt Alligood (JR.) Sam Green (JR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE C Zac Hodges, LB Stuart Taylor, RB Eli Green, OL A.J. Scott

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

T R I N I T Y

36

L L L L L L L L W L L

photo courtesy: Joey WIlson

CRUSADERS


WHERE ARE THEY NOW

Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood

Former Central standout Roger Jackson realized a dream by making it to the NFL. Now he’s back in the old neighborhood trying to help shape the lives of today’s troubled youth. BY BOBBY POPE

R

OGER JACKSON acknowledges that he has lived a blessed life during his first 50 years on this earth and he is working to “Give Back” to make things better for today’s youth. Growing up in the Tindall Heights and Unionville areas of Macon he has seen firsthand how important it is to grab an opportunity and run with it. Football was his catalyst and his hard work and determination took him all the way to the pinnacle of that sport playing five seasons with the Denver Broncos of the National Football League. 37


WHERE ARE THEY NOW MOUNTAIN MAN

Roger was a junior starting outside linebacker for Central High School during their state championship season of 1975 which was the last time a Macon High School has won a state title. They beat the Douglass Astros at Lakewood Stadium 21-14 for the crown. “Twenty one was our lucky number that season. We scored 21 points in our last five games and 21 was the number of yards quarterback Michael Jolley ran for on a 4th and 19 situation to keep a drive alive that led to the winning touchdown in beating Northside 21-19. We were a very close team, like a brotherhood. There were only 37 players on the squad and that included the B team. Douglass had over a hundred players and in fact they had double numbers because they had so many players. We had stars on our team but everyone was treated as equals. We were one.” Following that season Central Head Coach Gene Brodie and his staff headed south for Tift County leaving Jackson and his remaining teammates with a new coach resulting in a 5-6 season. Despite the disappointing year Jackson had the opportunity to continue his football career in the college ranks. He was offered scholarships at Bethune Cookman and Savannah State and was on the hold list at Georgia, Georgia Tech and Florida State. The hold list consists of players that colleges go back to if they don’t get their first choice of signees. Jackson took the sure thing and signed with Bethune Cookman in Daytona Beach, Florida where he was a three year starter at corner and free safety. “Bethune Cookman was a good choice for me. We had an 8-3 record my senior season.” His biggest thrill as a Wildcat came against arch rival Florida A&M. “That was always our biggest game of the year. One year we played at Doak Campbell Stadium in Tallahassee, another year we played at Tampa and we also played in the Citrus Bowl. The crowds were always in excess of

Jackson (right) spent 5 seasons with the Broncos.

60,000. In my senior season I returned a punt 48 yards to set up the winning touchdown against the Rattlers who had future Major League baseball standout Vince Coleman on their team.” Jackson was voted his team’s Most Valuable Defensive Back and he also finished with the Highest Grade Point Average for student athletes as a senior. Following his graduation from Bethune Cookman, where he earned a degree in Physical Education, it was on to the NFL as a free agent. “Dallas, Green Bay and Denver were aggressive in securing free agents, keeping them under wraps, and signing them immediately following the draft. I was actually in the Green Bay hotel and expected to sign with the

ORANGE CRUSH

Jackson (from bottom: second row, second from right) played linebacker on Central’s state title team in 1975.

38

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

Packers but I went out for a pizza and Denver officials snatched me and took me to their hotel until after the draft and signed me. I was fortunate in that my agent was able to negotiate a three-year deal with a good contract. That is the usual standard for free agents because for the most part teams don’t think free agents will make it. I was the highest paid rookie free agent in the league my first three years because of that contract and because I stuck with the team. I have two memories that stick out from my five years in Denver. I intercepted a pass against the Raiders in Oakland in 1984 that set up the winning field goal in overtime in a 22-19 win. That was for first place in the AFC west since we were tied at 7-1 going into the game. At the time that was the largest crowd in Oakland history.” A crowd of 92,469 saw that game.

His other favorite memory involved former Lanier/Central standout J.T. Thomas, who won four super bowl rings with the Pittsburgh Steelers. “I got to play alongside J.T. his last year in the NFL after he was traded to Denver. I was still in high school when J.T. won his first Super Bowl ring and he would come


WHERE ARE THEY NOW to Central and I was the only one he would let wear his ring. We grew up in the same area of Macon and he was always an inspiration to me and playing with him that one season was very special.” After five seasons Jackson knew his playing days were over. “I knew my ability wasn’t up to par any longer and it was time to step aside.” But his days in the NFL weren’t over. He spent the next 15 years scouting in the league. The first four years were at Denver for his head coach during his playing days, fellow Georgian Dan Reeves .”That first year they sent me on red eye flights to make sure I could handle the rigors of the job. One day I would be in Miami, the next day in New York and the next day in Seattle.” After staying with the Broncos he worked with the Kansas City Chiefs for 2 seasons and then 9 years with the Minnesota Vikings. Even with his success as a football player, Jackson’s true legacy could be for what he is doing to “Give Back” to is community. His Motivating Youth Foundation has become a model program for inner city youths. “It all started with a football camp that I held and evolved into what it is today. I was helping to secure school supplies for disadvantaged kids and two years ago I had some left over, so I went to Rosa Jackson Community Center to see if they needed any. Two wonderful ladies, Chris Culpepper and Dorothy Woolford , who both work at the Family Investment Center, asked me where my office was located. I told them I didn’t have an office and they said they had one for me if I would assist them. It was an old location for the Boys and Girls Club which was close to my heart because I grew up in the Boys Club. We made a grant proposal to John Hiscox, Executive Director of the Macon Housing Authority and it was accepted,” he said. “We have over 200 kids a day that are involved in the program. We had 111 registered for our after school program last year and only two failed the State CECT exam. I think it is of great assistance to the school system. We have retired teachers and current teachers working with the young people. Currently

S P E A K E R S

ALL SMILES The children enjoy plenty of activities under Roger’s supervision. BELOW: Roger with Coach Reeves at Jackson’s induction into the Macon Sports Hall of Fame. we have 21 devoted teachers who are assisting us,” Jackson added. Roger was inducted into the Macon Sports Hall of Fame in April of 2009. Just to show you how much he was respected, his NFL coach at Denver, Dan Reeves, was in attendance for the ceremony. So were several of his students, once again witnessing firsthand the positive results of Jackson’s hard work and perseverance. “I want these kids to be exposed to things that I wasn’t exposed to coming along. I want them to know that Education is the answer to life’s problems and that you don’t have to rob and steal.”

Date

Speaker

School

High School Night

September 14 September 21 September 28 October 5 October 12 October 19 October 26 November 2 November 9 November 16 November 30

David Dean Lloyd Carr Larry Blakeney Neil Callaway Durwood Fincher Paul Johnson Chris Hatcher Eric Zeier David Archer Tony Barnhart Bill Curry

Valdosta State Former Michigan Coach Troy University UAB Entertainer Georgia Tech Georgia Southern UGA Falcons Radio Analyst CBS Sports Georgia State

MDS Night Central Night Howard/Windsor Night Covenant/Southwest Night Ladies Night FPD Night Rutland Night Stratford Night Northeast Night Tattnall Night Westside Night

64th

MACON

TOUCHDOWN CLUB

For information on joining the Macon Touchdown Club please visit: www.macontouchdownclub.com. You can also call King Kemper: 750-7507 or Johnny Crawford: 471-8334. Meetings are Monday evening at 6:30pm at the Methodist Home for Children on Pierce Avenue. Yearly dues are $235. Guest fees are $25 per meeting.

Year

39


REGION 3-AA FORECASTED FINISH 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11.

photo courtesy: Joey WIlson

Jefferson County Toombs County Dublin Dodge County Swainsboro Screven County Laney Vidalia SE Bulloch East Laurens Bleckley County

PLAYERS TO WATCH PLAYER

perience to challenge for the region title. Quarterback Barry Bostic will operate behind a solid offensive front and the Warriors will likely be the fastest team in the region. Toombs County returns 10 starters including QB C.J. Scott who will also play in the defensive secondary. Overall, defensively the ‘Dogs will be young. The Dublin Irish will have to replace Rashard Smith as well as 17 starters from last year’s region championship team. Making the playoffs will be a challenge but you can never count out a Roger Holmes coached team. Lee Campbell’s second season at Dodge County should yield better results as the Indians could make a playoff run. Quarterback Malcolm Eady makes Swainsboro a dangerous team. Screven County should be tough, especially defensively. Laney lost a ton of players to graduation still the Wildcats have young talent and may be competitive. Parker Fletcher is 300 pounds and anchors the line for Vidalia which also includes 290 pound Darien Green. At 295, Daquan Daniels is a hoss at defensive tackle. East Laurens, SE Bulloch, and Bleckley County appear overmatched in what should be a very competitive region.

FINAL 2008 STANDINGS

Jefferson County has the talent and ex-

POSITION

SCHOOL

Barry Bostic

QB

Jefferson Co.

C.J. Scott

CB

Toombs Co.

Malcolm Eady

QB

Swainsboro

Cyprin Burse

RB

Dodge County

Josh Jordan

RB

Dublin

1. Dublin 2. Jefferson Co. 3. Toombs Co. 4. Laney 5. Screven County 6. East Laurens 7. Swainsboro 8. Vidalia 9. Dodge County 10. Bleckley Co. 11. SE Bulloch

REGION

OVERALL

9-1-0 8-2-0 7-3-0 7-3-0 6-4-0 5-5-0 5-5-0 4-6-0 2-8-0 2-8-0 1-9-0

11-2-0 9-3-0 9-4-0 7-3-0 6-4-0 5-5-0 5-5-0 4-6-0 2-8-0 2-8-0 1-9-0


DUBLIN 2008 WRAP: Roger Holmes and his staff did another masterful job of putting the pieces together in 2008. Despite losing a ton of talent from the previous year the Irish racked up 11 wins including nine in rugged Region 3AA as the Irish captured their fourth straight region title. They also notched a couple of playoff wins before running into the Buford Wolves in the state quarterfinals.

DEFENSE: Coach Holmes expects his defensive line to be a strength on this year’s team and very few people will argue with him given the size and talent of people like Tawaski King, DiMarquis Johnson, Emanuel Gilmore, Trevon Gilbert, Brain Dennis and transfer Carlton Nelson. Senior Tyreek Mitchell is a playmaker from his linebacker slot as are Nick Glenn and Maurice Martin. Junior Hunter Davis, sophomore Donovan McCloud, Jaysean Humbert and Jerome Sims will roam the secondary as will sophomore Cedris O’Neal who played well as a freshman until an ACL injury ended his season.

OFFENSE: Do everything quarterback Rashard Smith is gone and replacing him will be impossible but Coach Holmes is confident sophomore Rob East can handling the signal-calling duties. Holmes wants East to manage the game and not try and fill Smith’s SPECIAL TEAMS: The Irish lost shoes. East will have a bevy of solid a very talented kicker in Briceton running backs to hand the ball off Cannada but Junior David McManus to. Josh Jordan played well in 2008 saw action after Cannada was hurt and Holmes expects more good work and performed nicely. Rob East will from this year out of the fullback slot. handle the punting chores. Talented junior Nick Glenn, COACH HOLMES SAYS: senior Jerome Sims and “I like this group of guys. Our defense should Maurice Martin will also carry be a strength. We must control the clock and the ball a lot. When the Irish our quarterback must stay within his boundthrow the ball expect 6’5” aries.” 250 pound tight end Tawaski King to be one of the prime targets. Sophomore Troy Cody also has WE THINK: The main question mark good hands and should make his share is how well quarterback Rob East of catches. 6’2” 325 senior Emanuel can manage the offense but if he’s Gilmore will anchor the offensive line efficient the Irish should once again be from his center position. Another 300 one of the teams to beat in 3AA. The pounder, junior DiMarquis Johnson will schedule is highlighted by a regular help Gilmore open holes. The Irish will season-ending game against Jefferson have size up-front. County in the Shamrock Bowl. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ Screven County

S.11

Laney

S.18

@ Dodge County

S.25

Toombs County

O.2

@ Bleckley County

O.9

Vidalia

O.16

@ Swainsboro

O.23

East Laurens

O.30 N.6

@ SE Bulloch Jefferson County

2008 RESULTS

Screven County @ Laney Dodge County @ Toombs County Bleckley County @ Vidalia Swainsboro @ East Laurens SE Bulloch @ Jefferson County Central Thomasville @ Buford

W L W W W W W W W W W W L

BY THE NUMBERS

13-3 11-21 51-14 41-6 42-7 33-14 23-20 32-14 33-0 13-12 17-6 21-14 10-44

11.4

Dublin has averaged 11.4 wins per season over the past 5 seasons while losing an average of only 2 games a year.

photo courtesy: Joey WIlson

IRISH

Nick Glenn

IRISH FILE

HEAD COACH

Roger Holmes (8th year: 74-18-1)

COACHING STAFF William Barham, Brad Harbor, Sam Perry, Biff Parson, Marcus Walls, Jody Pollack, Steve Versprillie, Clois Williams, Chris Robinson, George Hagler

2008 RECORD 11-2-0

LAST 3 YEARS 36-5-1

LAST 5 YEARS 57-10-1

STADIUM Shamrock Bowl

REGION 3-AA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS RB RB C DL DL RB QB DB

Josh Jordan (SR.) Nick Glenn (JR.) Emanuel Gilmore (SR.) Tawaski King (SR.) DiMarquis Johnson (JR.) Jerome Sims (SR.) Rob East (SO.) Jaysean Humbert (JR.)

DB WR OL LB DB DB RB PK

Hunter Davis (JR.) Troy Cody (SO.) Travon Gilbert (JR.) Tyreek Mitchell (SR.) Donovan McCloud (SO.) Cedris O’Neal (SO.) Maurice Martin (SR.) David McManus (JR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE QB Rashard Smith, DE Jack Whittle, K Briceton Cannada, RB Jontrel Gilbert, WR Chris Smith, DL Trent Barnes

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

D U B L I N

I R I S H Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

41


EAST LAURENS 2008 WRAP: The Falcons saw their share of ups and downs in 2008. Among the ups was a 35-7 thrashing of Jefferson County in front of the home fans who saw senior running back Terrance Lewis run wild all night long. Among the downs was a gutwrenching 22-21 loss to Toombs County and a seven point defeat against Vidalia that kept Vic Thigpen’s crew out of the state playoffs.

DEFENSE: This group will be a work in progress as they try and replace some valuable performers like Brandon O’Neal, Jonathan Horne, and Devontay Vickers. The “D” features a pair of seniors: Cameron Mimbs and Hakeem Cannon that will anchor the defensive front. Both saw extensive playing time last season. Expect junior Connell Wilcher to see plenty of action as well. Dray Mitchell and C.J. Mitchell anchor the linebacking corps along with junior Kris O’Neal. Kenny Rogers, Chris Hudson, Eric Roberson and John Wesley will patrol the secondary.

OFFENSE: The Falcons lost a whole lot of firepower when last year’s senior class graduated. Power running back Terrance Lewis has taken his talents to Tennessee State University. Talented SPECIAL TEAMS: Junior Jonathan wide receivers Chris Cephus and Krys Briegel should capably handle the Thomas are also gone as is quarterback kicking chores but the Falcons must Ryan Savage. One bit of good news replace return specialist Wadriques is that coach Vic Thigpen believes his Jackson who brought back both a offensive line is strong and should help kick-off and a punt for touchdowns open holes for senior tailback Chris last season. Hudson, junior Eric Roberson and sophomore Demetrius Lewis COACH THIGPEN SAYS: along with fullbacks Dray “We hope to build on what we’ve done over Mitchell and C.J. Mitchell. The the past couple of seasons. We must not turn line is anchored by three-year the ball over and we have to play tough destarter Colby Morris. He’ll fense especially in a region as tough as ours.” be joined up front by fellow senior Hakeem Cannon, Henry Higgins and sophomore Bradley WE THINK: There appears to be Rosson. Junior Marquis Walker and no way the Falcons can match last senior Matt Steptoe will battle for the year’s offensive output when they starting quarterback position. The scored 20 or more points seven times two will throw to a receiving corps led in ten games. The schedule is also a by 6’3” 220 pound tight end Cameron backbreaker with away games against Mimbs and senior wide out T. J. Swainsboro, Jefferson County and Whitfield. Dublin. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

Toombs County

S.4

@ Bleckley County

S.11

Vidalia

S.18

@ Swainsboro

O.2

SE Bulloch

O.9

@ Jefferson County

O.16

Screven County

O.23

@ Dublin

O.30 N.6

Laney @ Dodge County E A S T

42

2008 RESULTS

@ Toombs County Bleckley County @ Vidalia Swainsboro @ SE Bulloch Jefferson County @ Screven County Dublin @ Laney Dodge County

L W L W W W L L L W

BY THE NUMBERS

21-22 41-27 7-14 37-6 35-7 35-7 20-30 14-32 7-28 28-14

30

After leading Screven County 20-0, the home standing Gamecocks scored 30 unanswered points including 16 in the final 2 minutes to beat East Laurens 30-20 ending the Falcons 3 game winning streak last season.

Connell Wilcher

FA L C O N S F I L E

HEAD COACH

Vic Thigpen (5th year: 13-27-1)

COACHING STAFF Shaun Pope, Randy Grace, Reid Bethea, Whitney Alligood, Terry Smith, Adam Hightower

2008 RECORD 5-5-0

LAST 3 YEARS 12-18-1

LAST 5 YEARS 16-34-1

STADIUM Falcon Field

REGION 3-AA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB QB RB RB C OL OL RB

Marquis Walker (JR.) Matt Steptoe (SR.) Chris Hudson (SR.) Eric Roberson (RB.) Colby Morris (SR.) Hakeem Cannon (SR.) Bradley Rossom (SO.) Dray Mitchell (SO.)

F A L C O N S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

TE DL DB DB WR K WR RB

Cameron Mimbs (SR.) Connell Wilcher (JR.) C.J. Mitchell (JR.) Kris O’Neal (JR.) T.J. Whitfield (SR.) Jonathan Briegel (JR.) Kenny Rogers (JR.) Demeatris Lewis (SO.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE RB Terrance Lewis, WR Chris Cephus, WR Krys Thomas, OL Wadriques Jackson, OL Jeremiah Garnto, QB Ryan Savage

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

L A U R E N S

photo courtesy: Joey WIlson

FALCONS


BLECKLEY CO. 2008 WRAP: The 2008 season proved to be one of the most frustrating in Sam Barrs long and very successful coaching career. Very little went right for the Royals on either side of the line and that coupled with a very rugged region schedule produced only one win for the Royals. The offense produced double figures in points on only three occasions while the defense allowed forty or more points five times in 2008.

DEFENSE: Sam Barrs says the Royals have to be better on defense in 2009 in order for the team to have any type of success. In five games last season, the Royals defense gave up more than 40 points. “The kids are workin’ hard and doing everything we ask of them,” says the veteran coach. New defensive coordinator Brad Davis will count on juniors Cody Jones and Tyler Rogers to anchor the defensive line along with senior Luke Darsey. Two more juniors, Jordan Perdue and Vidal Nelson will try and make big plays from their linebacking positions. Kelton Elvine, Payne Tripp, Ed Harris, Jarrett Leonard and freshman Derrick Farrow will all see action in the defensive backfield.

OFFENSE: The Royals must do a better job of moving the football and producing points in 2009. B.J. Long and Cole Little anchor a line that should be better. Center Jacob Lanfear is small but Barrs says he’s “a tough little kid” who will fight. That trio will try and open holes for running backs Roy Veal SPECIAL TEAMS: Coach Barrs beand Aubrey Jackson. Veal ran for more lieves kicker Blake Lucas will be a facthan 1000 yards last season moving tor for the Royals. Jordan Perdue will past the magical mark in the Royals fi- handle the punting duties. nal game of the season. The COACH BARRS SAYS: rushing game will have to “The real key is how will our defense stand up be a strong point in order to especially since we’re playing a lot of young take some of the pressure off kids on that side of the ball.” of freshman quarterback Ken Hughes. Barrs says Hughes has a lot of potential but this will still be his first time facing varsity WE THINK: The road to respectabilcompetition. Justin Chambers could ity in rugged Region 3AA is a long and also see action at the QB slot. Last tough one. This will be a young team year’s quarterback, Jacob Byram, has but Coach Barrs says the kids are hard moved to wide receiver where he will workers and they want to change the play along side Jon Caleb White and atmosphere brought about by last Brentine Taylor. Walker Meadows will year’s struggles. handle the tight end duties. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@Swainsboro

S.4

Eas Laurens

S.11

@ SE Bulloch

S.18

Jefferson County

S.25

@ Screven County

O.2

Dublin

O.9

@ Laney

O.16

Dodge County

O.23 N.6

@ Toombs County Vidalia

2008 RESULTS

Swainsboro @ East Laurens SE Bulloch @ Jefferson County Screven County @ Dublin Laney @ Dodge County Toombs County @ Vidalia

B L E C K L E Y

L L W L L L L L L L

BY THE NUMBERS

0-27 17-41 35-14 7-41 7-42 7-42 0-28 10-32 3-48 0-28

10

The 1978 Bleckley County team won their first ten games of the season before losing to R.E. Lee 21-7 in the region semifinals. The Royals completed their best season at 10-1.

Jacob Byram

R O YA L S F I L E

HEAD COACH

Sam Barrs (5th year: 18-25-0) Overall (22nd year: 143-96-0)

COACHING STAFF

Ted Belflower, Brad Davis, Von Lassiter, Kevin Pyche, Stacy Nobles, Blake Davis

2008 RECORD 1-9-0

LAST 3 YEARS 14-19-0

LAST 5 YEARS 21-32-0

STADIUM Royal Stadium

REGION 3-AA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS WR WR LB DL DB OL OL RB

Jacob Byram (SR.) John Caleb White (SR.) Jordan Perdue (JR.) Luke Darsey (SR.) Payne Tripp (SR.) B.J. Long (SR.) Cole Little (JR.) Roy Veal (SR.)

OL LB DL DL DB DB WR QB

Jacob Lanfear (SR.) Vidal Nelson (JR.) Cody Jones (JR.) Tyler Rogers (JR.) Derrick Farrow (FR.) Kelton Elvine (SO.) Brentine Taylor (JR.) Ken Hughes (FR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE RB Dalton Dabs, OL Adam Barlow, DL Kyle Conyer, OL Luke Arnold

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

C O U N T Y

R O Y A L S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

43

photo courtesy: Joey WIlson

R O YA L S


DODGE CO.

D

2008 WRAP: Lee Campbell’s first season as head coach at Dodge County was certainly not what he hoped it would be. The Indians season was marred by injuries and inconsistent effort by the offense all year long. Dodge outgained Southeast Bulloch more than three to one on opening night but still lost the game in addition to losing starting quarterback Cyprin Burse. The team struggled after that loss and never really hit its stride.

DEFENSE: The Indians struggled defensively last season so they look to improve this year. Leonard Floyd is also a force on the defensive side of the ball. He played well as a freshman and should get help on the defensive front from seniors Derome Clark and Tevin Johnson. A pair of seniors: Hershel Anderson, and Cy Burse along with underclassmen Kyree Davidson, Tucker Stonecypher and Kayton Johnson will all see action at linebacker. Laquan Hogue heads up the secondary which also features Cole Evans, Devon Simmons and Curtis Rushing.

OFFENSE: Four starters return on the offensive line which should provide a solid foundation as the Indians regroup. Juniors Tim Chick, Robert Jefferson and seniors Jerry White SPECIAL TEAMS: Junior Cole and Semay Ivey are all battle tested. Evans will handle the kicking chores. Quarterback Shawn Honeycutt who Campbell says Evans has a “good was thrown into action early when Cy leg” which gives the Indians a threat Bruse went down and should benefit in close games. They must replace from that that experience. Campbell talented return man Scotty Whitten. is high on sophomore D’Eric McNair who will also see action at COACH CAMPBELL SAYS: quarterback. Cyprin Burse “We’ve gotta stay healthy to compete in this moves from quarterback to region. We also must protect the ball better, running back. Sophomore keep our defense off the field and improve Devon Simmons and Mike our red-zone scoring.” Knight will also carry the ball. When the Indians throw it this season they will look to get the ball WE THINK: Lee Campbell is a proven to the very talented Laquan Hogue. winner with 2 state championships Kayton Johnson, Curtis Rushing and (at Hawkinsville). He likes this team Cole Evans are also capable receivers. especially some of the younger players. Another special talent on offense is The key will be avoiding major injuries sophomore tight end Leonard Floyd. and playing better on the offensive Floyd goes 6’4”, 210 and is a load to side of the ball where turnovers killed bring down. the Indians in 2008. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ SE Bulloch

S.4

Jefferson County

S.11

@ Screven County

S.18

Dublin

S.25

@ Laney

O.9

Toombs County

O.16

@ Bleckley County

O.23

Vidalia

O.30 N.6

@ Swainsboro East Laurens D O D G E

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2008 RESULTS

SE Bulloch @ Jefferson County Screven County @ Dublin Laney @ Toombs County Bleckley County @ Vidalia Swainsboro @ East Laurens

L L L L L L W W L L

BY THE NUMBERS

20-25 7-20 0-34 14-51 0-35 7-37 32-10 14-7 7-32 14-28

88

Former Dodge County standout Benji Roland was a College Football All American in 1988. Roland was a nose tackle for the Auburn Tigers.

Cyprin Burse

INDIANS FILE

HEAD COACH

Lee Campbell (2nd season: 2-8-0) Overall (14th year: 88-65-1)

COACHING STAFF

Ray Hardin, Adam Turner, Ricky Parks, Jayme Fordham, Ronny Crump, Ricky Collins, Tommy Adcock, Clint Sanders

2008 RECORD 2-8-0

LAST 3 YEARS 20-14-0

LAST 5 YEARS 34-21-0

STADIUM Memorial

REGION 3-AA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS RB QB OL DL LB QB WR DB

Cyprin Burse (SR.) Shawn Honeycutt (SR.) Jerry White (SR.) Derome Clark (SR.) Kyree Davidson (JR.) D’Eric McNair (SO.) Curtis Rushing (SO.) Devon Simmons (JR.)

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

Hershel Anderson (SR.) Laquan Hogue (SR.) Tevin Johnson (SR.) Tim Chick (JR.) Leonard Floyd (SO.) Robert Jefferson (JR.) Tucker Stonecypher (JR.) Kayton Johnson (JR.)

WR Scotty Whitten, RB Jeremy Kirtz, LB Javarris Gordon, OL Julius Lamd

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS

I N D I A N S

LB WR DL C TE OL LB LB

TOUGH TO REPLACE

PLAYOFF TEAM C O U N T Y

photo courtesy: Joey WIlson

INDIANS


COACHING LEGEND

DETERMINED LITTLE DEVIL

Former Hawkinsville coach Bobby Gentry may have been small in stature, but on the sidelines he was a big winner! BY SAM CRENSHAW

I

n the Peach State, the drive from Hawkinsville to Dalton is just over 220 miles. That was the distance the retired coach, Bobby Gentry of the Hawkinsville Red Devils, had to travel to receive his induction into the Georgia Athletic Coaches Association Hall of Fame on June 4, 2005. To be elected to the GACA Hall of Fame by a group of his peers meant a great deal to the retired coach. “They are the ones who recognize the achievements of their associates and competitors,” Gentry said. “It is a tremendous honor to have been elected, and I am gratified by their vote of confidence in me.” The journey of this legendary coach to the Hall of Fame began long before then.

Gentry’s entire life had been one in which he was involved in athletics. At five feet eight inches tall and weighing only 145 pounds soaking wet he was extremely small for a Head Coach. In fact with his youthful appearance some Hawkinsville boys mistook him for a new high school student. “Dynamite comes in small packages” seemed to fit Bobby Gentry who was tenacious, regardless of the sport. He lettered three straight years in basketball, including the 1941 team, his senior year when Athens High won the State Championship. In football, a game which has always favored the bigger athletes, the future Hall of Fame member out-willed and out-performed his larger peers and was named starting quarterback on Athens High School’s Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

football team. After his graduation from high school, Gentry attempted to become a pilot during the waning days of World War II, however he was passed over as were many others when it was determined that the military—log-jammed with pilots—no longer had a need for as many flyers as they had during the conflict. The war in Europe had ended with the defeat of Hitler’s Nazi regime, and with the event of the atomic bombs which were dropped on two of the largest industrial cities in Japan, that war would soon come to a conclusion. Men were returning home and trying to find their way back into the work force. The former Athens quarterback found

45


BOBBY GENTRY a job as an assistant coach at his alma mater, working with Head Coach Charles “Beefy” Eaves for two years.

photo courtesy: Middle Georgia Archives, Washington Memorial Library

Then came 1948, a time when many things in the United States were changing. The WWII veteran received a call from Eddie Harrell, who was a former coach when Gentry played at Athens High. Harrell had subsequently been hired the previous year as principal of Hawkinsville High School. Harrell was looking for a new head football coach

Back in those days Hawkinsville did not have a golf course so Coach Gentry “hired” me for fifty cents to shag his golf balls in a field as he practiced. In the summer, I was one of the boys he chose to scrub the city swimming pool each Wednesday. In turn I was rewarded with free admission. It came as no surprise that he selected me to be a manager for the Red Devils when I was a seventh and eighth grade student. Coach and I spent many Saturday mornings washing uniforms and repairing equipment. He

GENTRY was so young when he took over at Hawkinsville, he was often mistaken as a student.

and he fondly remembered his former quarterback and made a call to Athens. When the slender-built Gentry arrived in Hawkinsville in 1948, he discovered a small, sleepy community on the banks of the Ocmulgee River. He expected his stay to be a short one. He was merely doing his old high school coach, a favor to help him through early practice. “I really thought that I’d be heading back to Athens,” Gentry said. In actuality, what happened was the beginning of a brilliant career. That telephone call would change the lives of hundreds, maybe thousands, of kids over the next fifty years. This writer was one of the many young boys whose lives were touched by Coach Gentry. In 1948 when I was ten-years-old, Coach Gentry allowed me to travel to away games with the team on the school bus.

46

attempted to get me to do it again in the ninth grade, but I reneged on that to pursue my dream to play for the varsity team in 1952 as a substitute. Some of the early schedules of Hawkinsville pitted the team against “B” teams from much larger places like Lanier High School in Macon, and out of necessity to fill a schedule, sometimes the Red Devils played a team twice in one season, something not looked upon as a wise thing to do. They risked getting drubbed two times in a season or if they were lucky enough to win the first game, they might lose the second because of being over-confident and because of a strong motivation of revenge on the part of the other team. With the fabulous fifties hatching from its shell and becoming part of life, so the Red Devil football team began to breathe Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

without life-support. Arguably, it began in 1951 with a team whose record was barely above the break-even mark, five wins, four losses and a tie. However, there were a lot of young boys coming up in the ranks and ready to crack the line-up as starters. The Devils had never beaten their top rival 35 miles west of Hawkinsville, the dreaded Fort Valley Green Wave who were coached by Hall of Fame member, Norman Faircloth. The Green Wave used to have their way with the Devils each season and the perennial shout rang out in Hawkinsville, “Wait until next year!” In 1952, that chant was thought to be a possibility as Hawkinsville climbed to the top of the Macon Telegraph prep rankings. Led by quarterback, Curtis Browning and a big end named Jimmy Eaton, the Devils were undefeated going into the big game against Fort Valley, their perennial nemesis. An old fashioned standoff ensued and after the dust settled the two teams had played to a scoreless tie. In those days, there was no overtime format or suddendeath. Scoreless games were simply ruled a tie. However, the mighty Devils had not seen the last of the Green Wave in 1952. Both teams continued to sit in a tie for first place in their region. Inevitably, they would meet in the Regional Playoff on Thanksgiving Day, an unusually frigid scene on the neutral field of Cordele, thirty miles away. Although the Devils played hard and perhaps had the better team, the collective hearts of every member of the team, and its fans, were broken when Wesley “Scooter” Melvin ran the opening kickoff all the way back for a touchdown. Fort Valley never looked back and in the end the Devils were beaten 20-12. Nevertheless, Robert R. “Bobby” Gentry’s legend had begun! One story circulated concerning another legendary coach—perhaps the greatest of all time in high school football—Wright Bazemore who told his Class A team, the Valdosta Wildcats, as they passed through Hawkinsville one


BOBBY GENTRY Friday night that they should be thankful they didn’t have to play the Hawkinsville team. The disappointment of the 1952 season seemed to motivate the Devils in 1953. Hawkinsville, thought by many around the state to be the best team, regardless of classification —went undefeated in regular season play, including a 12-6 victory over Fort Valley. They followed that up by winning the South Georgia championship when the Devils routed Waynesboro 33-7. All that was left was a meeting with Calhoun in Griffin, a neutral site chosen for the State Championship. The Devils were not to be denied. Led by Captains, W.L. Rewis, Billy Crenshaw and John Sawyer, the Devils crushed the Yellow Jackets 27-6 making the diminutive coach with the big cigar the coach of the Class A State Champions. The following year, the Red Devils returned nine starters and looked to be as strong as their predecessors. Behind

state championships.

Vicky Griffin, now retired and living in Hawkinsville, and Robyn Allen, who is Although the prospects for champion- still teaching in Dublin attended the priship teams looked promising over the vate ceremony along with their families. next few years, and some came close, The couple has four grandsons, Robert Gentry’s boys would not bring home and Fain Griffin who are both college graduates now involved in Sports in Oconee County and “He (Gentry) was a great Houston County respectively. coach but an even better Ross and Will Griffith are both man. We thought he was a enrolled in college where Ross rattlesnake at 130 pounds! is studying to become a veterinarian and Will plans to follow He’s the reason I went into his mom and grandparents coaching.” into teaching and coaching.

―RODNEY COLLINS

Collins (who is the current head coach at Stratford) played QB at Hawkinsville under Gentry in the mid ‘60’s

another state trophy until 1959. That team, led by captains Jimmy Moore, Johnny Gatlin, and Herbie Herrington overcame a regular season loss to Fort Valley by compiling seven straight victories to bring home the third State Championship trophy of the decade. It would be the final title for Gentry who came close in 1962 losing the championship game to Morgan County. The 1968 and

One of the greatest tributes to Coach Gentry became known as the Super Red Devil Reunion in 2003. It consisted of students who went to great lengths to contact players, cheerleaders and coaches who were part of his career. Other than raising his family, there is little doubt that his greatest accomplishment was all the lives he influenced for good, as was evidenced that year when attendees came from all over the country including a cheerleader and her husband from Maui, Hawaii who were

THROUGH THE YEARS: From left: Gentry at CAGA Hall of Fame Ceremony, The versatile coach in 1949, Gentry with grandson Fain, The 1959 co-captains: Moore, Gatlin, and Herrington.

the second-year quarterback, Harlow Coody, and the running of Melvin Borum, the eventual winner of the Player of the Year award for 1954, they blew through the competition like a hard March wind in Georgia. Hawkinsville finished the regular season 10-0, then squeaked by Sparta 14-7 to advance to their second straight state title game. Once again victory was sweet as Coach Gentry guided the Devils past Buford 20-6. Hawkinsville had posted back-to-back 12-0 seasons and claimed consecutive

1969 teams each won 10 games during the regular season but both were upended in the state quarterfinals by Vidalia. During 1952 when Gentry’s legendary career began to take root, another lifechanging event took place when the young coach and his fiancé, Hawkinsville schoolteacher, Maye Mitchell were married. In 2002, the couple celebrated their 50th Anniversary with a small family group of children and grandchildren in Hawkinsville. Their two daughters, Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

part of the 400 plus attendees. Many of those well-wishers were boys and girls who had gone on to brilliant careers in the medical, teaching and sports fields. Some of those in attendance were now seventy-years-old and one former player, Pete Jenkins, had experienced a brilliant career as a coach in the Southeastern Conference before moving on to coach in the NFL with the Philadelphia Eagles. Bobby Gentry’s overall career record in

47


BOBBY GENTRY the rough and tumble sport of football were able to become part of the legendary Hawkinsville Red Devils. Always a versatile player and coach, Gentry had the great pleasure of coaching both his daughters, Vicky and Robyn during their high school careers in girl’s basketball and led them to the state tournament only to fall to the eventual state champions. In addition, he coached boy’s basketball, baseball, and golf.

photo courtesy: Middle Georgia Archives, Washington Memorial Library

football was 203-97-10. Additionally, he won three state football championships and seven region titles.  He was named Coach of the Year in 1959 and served as the head coach of the South team in the 1977 North-South All Star Game.  He was also honored by the Atlanta Touchdown Club as a member of the “Club of Coaches Winning Over 200 Games.” He was elected posthumously into the Athens Athletic Hall of Fame. Amongst his many accolades, in 1995 the high school stadium was renamed Bobby Gentry Stadium in his honor.  Coach Gentry was elected to the Georgia Athletic Coaches Association Hall of Fame and was officially presented by former Americus coach Jimmy Hightower and inducted on June 4, 2005.

After retiring from active coaching, he remained close to the education field, later running for, and being elected to, the office of Pulaski County School Superintendent.

It has been sixty-one years since the little coach came to Hawkinsville and left his very large footprints in His Head Coaching career began in the sandy soil of Pulaski County. 1948 and he hung it up in 1977 for Coach Bobby Gentry passed away in full-time Administrative Education. ONE OF MANY victory hugs from wife Maye. December, 2005. His immense conIt was through his leadership that tributions will never be forgotten. Black athletes who had never played

Good Luck To Our 2009-2010 Bibb County Athletes!! Central High Howard High Northeast High

Rutland High Southwest High Westside High

www.bibb.k12.ga.us 48

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009


REGION 4-AA FORECASTED FINISH 1. Henry County 2. Greene County 3. Howard 4. Central 5. Northeast 6. Southwest 7. Putnam County 8. Monticello PLAYERS TO WATCH lost quarterback Drew Little, RB Quan Jones, and WR Jamal Patterson (signed with Stanford) still the Warhawks are the likely favorite to retain their region crown led by WR Markeith Ambles (Tennessee bound) and watch sophomore Jean Bart a real jet out of the backfield. Charles Winslette returns to coach Greene County (where he won the state title in 1993) and the Tigers are athletic and should be much improved. Howard may challenge in just their second season under Bobby Hughes. The Huskies return 21 of 22 starters including RB Aarion Palmer. The Central Chargers should be back in the playoff hunt. Kelcey Butts returns at quarterback and newcomer Desmond Phillips, Jr. (who’s father was a standout at Central) gives the Big Orange a threat to replace the talented Adam Crump. Michael Palmer returns for Northeast at quarterback but the Raiders lost 15 starters from a year ago including A.J. Cornelius and Sheldon Mays. The surprise Southwest Patriots must replace RB Adrian Alexander but coach Carror Wright returns eight starters with a winning mentality. Putnam County returns 13 starters and should be better while Monticello may struggle with a very young team.

POSITION

SCHOOL

Markeith Ambles

WR

Henry County

Michael Palmer

QB

Northeast

Aarion Palmer

RB

Howard

William Leslie

QB

Greene County

Andra Jefferson

WR

Southwest

FINAL 2008 STANDINGS

Henry County

PLAYER

REGION

OVERALL

1. Henry County

6-0-0

10-2-0

2. Southwest

5-1-0

8-3-0

3. Northeast

4-2-0

8-3-0

4. Central

3-3-0

5-6-0

5. Greene County

2-4-0

4-6-0

6. Monticello

1-5-0

2-8-0

7. Putnam County

0-6-0

2-8-0

8. Howard

0-0-0

1-9-0


SOUTHWEST PAT R I O T S

2008 WRAP: Talk about a turnaround! The Patriots, who previously had won only 3 games in four years opened the season winning 5 of 6 to post a 5-1 record. Head Coach Carror Wright guided his team to an impressive 8-2 regular season and a playoff berth. The Patriots lost their first round game against Toombs County 13-0, still the pride was back at Southwest.

DEFENSE: Coach Wright’s defense will run the 4-3 with the main focus being to stop the run. Alphonso Ponder and Randall Cleveland are a pair of seniors who may see action up-front. Sophomores Travis Bray, Jonathan Jenkins, and Devontae Paul will also be in the mix. The linebacking group is led by Chase Nelson. Fellow underclassmen Jewitt Jones and Josh Dean will likely be in the lineup. In the secondary, Andra Jefferson is a standout performer at safety and should be the defensive leader. Khiry Burns will be at the other safety spot while Dalvin McCollum, Mario Andrews, and JonRiquez Grayer run the corners.

OFFENSE: The Patriots will be hardpressed to be as explosive offensively as they were a year ago. Adrian Alexander completed a phenomenal career posting huge numbers from his running back spot. Senior Tavaris Jones will join a pair of sophomores: Sharod Fuller, and Carl Williams in the back- SPECIAL TEAMS: Ethan Reynolds field. Who they line-up behind is still looks to take over the kicking duties a question to be answered. There are with Zack Evans doing the punting. four players competing for the quar- Long snapper Josh Rousseau will be terback job. Sophomore J.T. Miller ap- hard to replace but Albert Clark should pears to be the favorite. He’s smart do just fine. and is coming off a nice BCOACH WRIGHT SAYS: team season. The other three “Our kids confidence level has to grow. Our competitors are are freshcoaching staff has to lead these kids to gain men: Bratavious Morgan, that confidence.” Eddie Kirkland, and Jovona Jackson. The offensive line has some experience returning with four-year starter Albert Clark WE THINK: The Patriots had a rereturning at a guard spot. Dontrell markable turnaround last season. This Thomas will start at the other guard will be a more challenging year beposition. Big Brian Mullen (6’2”, 305 cause of the youth and inexperience, pounds) is at one tackle. Terrell Battle plus the fact that no one will be overand Laray Edwards should also see looking Southwest this time around. action. Omar Whitby will be at center Another playoff berth is questionable with Dalvin Sallett likely the TE. but that’s also what we thought last year. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.27

Rutland

S.4

Albany

S.11

Twiggs County

S.25

@ Monticello

O.2

Northeast

O.9

Putnam County

O.16

@ Henry County

O.23

Central

O.30 N.6

@ Greene County Howard

2008 RESULTS

Rutland @ Albany @ Twiggs County Monticello Northeast @ Putnam County Henry County Central Greene County Howard Toombs County

W W L W W W L W W W L

21

Former Patriot Milton Cuyler was just 21 years old when he played his first major league baseball game for the Detroit Tigers in 1990. Cuyler was a two-sport star at Southwest excelling in both baseball and football.

PAT R I O T S F I L E

HEAD COACH

Carror Wright (3rd year: 9-12-0) Overall (14th year: 68-75-0)

COACHING STAFF

Calvin Rogers, Hubert Hogan, Willie Batts, Darrin Clark, Bennie Nelson, Jamie Latimore, Brandon Andrews

2008 RECORD 8-3-0

LAST 3 YEARS 11-20-0

LAST 5 YEARS 11-40-0

STADIUM Henderson

REGION 4-AA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS OL OL WR OL DB DB LB DL

Albert Clark (SR.) Brian Mullen (JR.) Ethan Reynolds (SR.) Joe Willis (SR.) Andra Jefferson (JR.) Dalvin McCollum (SR.) Chase Nelson (JR.) Travis Bray (SO.)

P A T R I O T S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

RB LB LB DB RB RB DL DL

Tavaris Jones (SR.) Jewitt Jones (JR.) Josh Dean (JR.) Khiry Burns (JR.) Carl Williams (SO.) Sharod Fuller (SO.) Randall Cleveland (SR.) Devontae Paul (SO.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE RB Adrian Alexander, DL Khiry King, QB Michael Johnson, TE Josh Rousseau, CB Calvin Jackson, RB Kethian Ray

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

S O U T H W E S T

50

BY THE NUMBERS

7-0 42-7 21-24 49-20 34-27 47-12 28-36 30-18 26-6 42-10 0-13

J.T. Miller


C

CENTRAL

2008 WRAP: The Big Orange dropped three of their first four games (in fact they were shutout in each loss) but rebounded to post 5 wins and grab the final playoff spot in 4AA. The Chargers dropped their opening round postseason matchup to Dublin to finish the season 5-6.

DEFENSE: A couple of defensive leaders have moved on with DE Rashard Knight (now at Nicholls State) and LB Brian Jones (Valdosta State), which means there are holes to fill on the defensive side of the ball. Up front, Chavis Hollingshed and Kelvin Lewis (290 pounds) give the Chargers some interior size. Tori Jones and Reggie Wilson will see time at defensive end. The linebacking unit will be very young. Wesley Williams and Ricky Summers could be in the starting lineup. The Chargers may look to move DB Mikey Sanders up to linebacker. That will leave Titus Jones, Kerrian Johnson, and Keenan Jackson to lead the secondary.

OFFENSE: The Chargers will miss Adam Crump who was the leading rusher each of the past two seasons, but Head Coach Anthony Hines has some explosive weapons returning to the offensive backfield. Senior quarterback Kelcey Butts is back and will be pushed for the starting job by Devon Thomas who may be a better thrower. The running back stable includes Jadarious Meadows (second SPECIAL TEAMS: Place kicker Palmer leading rusher last year), Timothy Feibelman and punter Kevin Jones have Robinson, Todd Scott and newcomer graduated leaving the Orange searchDesmond Phillips, Jr. who’s father was ing for replacements. Central must also a standout for the Big Orange back in replace return standout Adam Crump. the ‘80’s. Emanuel Carter and COACH HINES SAYS: Tim Scott will likely see play“We have a chance to improve if some of the ing time at receiver. young kids can step up. I think we have a Up front, the Chargers return chance to have a good season.” some experience. Samuel Camps mans the center spot with Trent Dominy and returning starter Kelvin Lawrence at tackle. WE THINK: The Chargers face anothJerry Stephens and Desmond Williams er tough early season schedule with return at the guard positions. The Westside and LaGrange on the slate Chargers were able to run the ball ef- prior to the region opener against fafectively last season but need to de- vored Henry County. If the Big Orange velop a passing attack this season in can get out of the gate and gain some order to keep opposing defenses hon- confidence, another playoff berth may est. be a possibility. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ Westside

S.4

@ Hardaway

S.18

@ LaGrange

S.25

Henry County

O.1

Howard

O.9

Northeast

O.16

@ Greene County

O.23

Southwest

O.30 N.5

Monticello Putnam County

2008 RESULTS

Westside Hardaway LaGrange @ Henry County Howard Northeast Greene County Southwest @ Monticello @ Putnam County Dublin

L W L L W L W L W W L

BY THE NUMBERS

0-51 16-10 0-28 0-13 55-0 16-30 34-7 18-30 34-6 34-0 6-17

19

Linebacker Brian Jones had 19 tackles in the Chargers 34-7 victory over Greene County last season.

photo courtesy: Gloria Payne

CHARGERS

Jadarious Meadows

CHARGERS FILE

HEAD COACH

Anthony Hines (8th year: 29-42-0)

COACHING STAFF Brent Thornton, Andre Taylor, Wayne Holleman, Kevin Grooms, Chivas Spivey, Issac Gibson, Brooks Case

2008 RECORD 5-6-0

LAST 3 YEARS 12-19-0

LAST 5 YEARS 23-28-0

STADIUM Henderson

REGION 4-AA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB OL OL DB RB TE OL LB

Kelcey Butts (SR.) Desmond Williams (SR.) Kelvin Lewis (SR.) Kerrian Johnson (SR.) Timothy Robinson (SR.) Tim Scott (SR.) Chavis Hollingshed (DL) Wesley Williams (SR.)

RB OL LB DB RB OL WR DB

Todd Scott (SR.) Jerry Stephens (SR.) Orlando Franklin (SR.) Mikey Sanders (SR.) Jadarious Meadows (JR.) Kevin Lawrence (SR.) Emanuel Carter (SR.) Titus Jones (SO.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE RB Adam Crump, DE Rashard Knight, LB Javarus Faulk, DE Coty Nash, LB Brian Jones, OL Jeremy May

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

C E N T R A L

C H A R G E R S Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

51


NORTHEAST

NE

RAIDERS

2008 WRAP: The Raiders won 6 of their first seven games then lost a heartbreaker 39-35 to eventual region champion Henry County. Northeast still managed a third place region finish which gave them a berth in the state playoffs. The Raiders lost to Jefferson County in the opening round to close out a successful year at 8-3.

DEFENSE: The defense will be equally young and inexperienced with only four starters returning. Senior Derial Watson will anchor the defensive front along with Ben Ross. Travis Sherman and sophomore Levi Toomer complete the front four. Sophomore Evarius Pleasant is back at linebacker after starting there last season as a freshman. Robert Spence and Edward Cooper will likely join Pleasant at linebacker. In the secondary, the Raiders will miss Sheldon Mays who was a three-year starter. Look for a completely new unit of Juantreze Williams, Trae Clark, Nigel Woolford, and Curtis Whisby; all starters on the B-team last season.

OFFENSE: While the Raiders return only four offensive starters, Head Coach Bruce Mullen is certainly glad that one of those players is quarterback Michael Palmer. Palmer has been a fixture in the Raiders backfield since his freshman season. He’s getting looks from several Division I programs (like Georgia and Georgia Tech). According to his coach, Palmer does SPECIAL TEAMS: Freshman Allen “everything exceptional.” He will need Moss and Jacoby Sandifur will compete to utilize all of his skills because the for the kicking duties with Mike Palmsupporting cast is very inexperienced. er possibility doing the punting. Curtis Gone is all-region running back A.J. Whisby will have a chance to return. Cornelius (over 1800 yards COACH MULLEN SAYS: rushing last season). Junior “We’ve got to get some experience early. Jerod King will join a pair We’re real young and we’ve got to grow up of sophomores: Calvinaugh in a hurry.” Mitchell and Michael Massey in the backfield. Roquez Thomas and Daivene Hill will give Palmer a couple of solid targets WE THINK: The Raiders have sevat receiver. Up front, center Jawara eral new faces, still old reliable Mike Glover, tackle Mike Brown, and guard Palmer at quarterback makes NorthMichael Bryant bring all-star creden- east formidable each week. It will be tials. Look for junior Trae Council and a challenging year and a playoff berth sophomore Justin Wood to round out may hinge on the regular season fithe front five. Senior Travis Sherman nale when the Raiders host Greene returns to his tight end position. County. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

Eagle’s Landing

S.4

Harris County

S.11

@ Dooly County

S.25

Howard

O.2

Southwest

O.9

Central

O.16

Monticello

O.23

@ Henry County

O.30 N.6

@ Putnam County Greene County

2008 RESULTS

@ Eagle’s Landing @ Harris County Dooly County Howard Southwest Central @ Monticello Henry County Putnam County @ Greene County @ Jefferson County

W W W W L W W L W W L

3

The Raiders have posted 3 straight winning seasons which ties the longest streak in school history. From 20012003 the Raiders posted winning seasons under Carror Wright was is now the head coach at Southwest.

RAIDERS FILE

HEAD COACH

Bruce Mullen (6th year: 26-26-0)

COACHING STAFF Kelvin Oliver, Millard Vining, Robbie Mays, Tony Montgomery, Percy Charlton, Brian Williams, Kerry Sandifur, Jermaine Lightfoot

2008 RECORD 8-3-0

LAST 3 YEARS 20-12-0

LAST 5 YEARS 26-26-0

STADIUM Thompson

REGION 4-AA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB C DE TE OL OL WR WR

Michael Palmer (SR.) Jamara Glover (SR.) Derial Watson (SR.) Travis Sherman (SR.) Michael Brown (JR.) Levi Toomer (SO.) Daivene Hill (JR.) Roquez Thomas (JR.)

R A I D E R S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

OL DB DB OL DL RB DB DB

Justin Wood (SO.) Trae Clark (JR.) Juantreze Williams (JR.) Michael Bryant (JR.) Ben Ross (JR.) Calvinaugh Mitchell (SO.) Nigel Woolford (JR.) Curtis Whisby (SO.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE RB A.J. Cornelius, DB Sheldon Mays, DB Emanuel Pleasant, WR Quintarious Nelson, LB Jamel Hall, TE Deontae Gainey

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

N O R T H E A S T

52

BY THE NUMBERS

34-12 27-0 43-16 49-0 27-34 30-16 49-13 35-39 38-0 51-7 12-24

Derial Watson


HOWARD 2008 WRAP: The Howard Huskies took their lumps in their inaugural season winning just one game against nine defeats. Head coach Bobby Hughes felt the “inexperience made it difficult to find a way to win.” Howard played 12 freshmen last season who gained tremendous experience.

DEFENSE: The Huskies return everyone defensively but Hughes is still concerned about the maturity of the unit. Senior Kiara Jones is back at a defensive end spot. Kelvin Jones is also back and sophomore Mark Morton will also be in the trenches. Demetrus McCoy and Cartellis Smith are both senior linebackers. Christopher Jenkins and Corey Hightower and sophomores who will also see plenty of action at LB. In the secondary Darrell Jones and Randy Nelson, both seniors will join sophomore Ronnie Cabbiness. Transfer Blake Mahoney may also see action in the defensive backfield.

OFFENSE: Coach Hughes is optimistic about his returning offensive personnel. Tyrone Wright is back for his senior season at quarterback and the coach thinks Wright “has a better grasp of the offense.” Multi-purpose back Aarion Palmer returns to the backfield. Reggie Carey and Blake Mahoney, who transferred from Mt. De SPECIAL TEAMS: Kamon Woolery Sales will give the Huskies a talented and Martin Velinov give the Huskies trio of weapons. Terrell Goodson is at two capable kickers. Aarion Palmer one receiver spot along with junior is a dynamic return man capable of DeAngelo Perry. The offensive line will breaking one at any time, Ronnie Cabbe young but there’s talent. Junior biness and Blake Mahoney will also Kyle Rackley returns at center. Mal- see action. colm Lemons is the lone seCOACH HUGHES SAYS: nior up-front. He’ll be flanked “We were thrown into the fire last season at a guard spot by Tremayne and the kids never caved in. We improved Lewis (one of many sophoas much from start to finish as any team I’ve mores in the Huskies lineup). ever had.” In fact, two more soph’s will likely start at tackle: Albarra Younis and Justin Sarabia. Perron Jen- WE THINK: The Huskies suffered kins will line-up at tight end. The Hus- through a long season in 2008. It may kies will try and spread the field and be payback time in 2009. Howard will get the ball to one of their many play- be better and some coaches in the remakers. Hughes says, “I’m really look- gion think the Huskies will challenge ing forward to seeing how far we’ve for a playoff berth. If this team contincome. We’re a lot more physical than ues to improve and gains some confiwe were at this point last year.” dence, look out. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ Johnson County

S.4

West Laurens

S.11

@ Heard County

S.25

Northeast

O.1

@ Central

O.9

@ Monticello

O.16

@ Putnam County

O.23

Greene County

O.30 N.6

Henry County Southwest

2008 RESULTS

Johnson County @ West Laurens Heard County Northeast Central Monticello Putnam County @ Greene County @ Henry County Southwest

L L L L L W L L L L

BY THE NUMBERS

7-46 7-47 13-27 0-49 0-55 36-21 27-46 28-40 3-55 10-42

36

The Huskies put up 36 points against Monticello for the first victory in school history. Unfortunately it was the lone win for Howard in 2008.

photo courtesy: Gloria Payne

HUSKIES

Aarion Palmer

HUSKIES FILE

HEAD COACH

Bobby Hughes (2nd year: 1-9-0) Overall (7th year: 43-26-0)

COACHING STAFF

Jason Respert, Quinnen Peavy, Danny Slaughter, David Hodges, Lavon Grant, Nate Ashmon, Kyle Atkins

2008 RECORD 1-9-0

LAST 3 YEARS N/A

LAST 5 YEARS N/A

STADIUM Ed Defore Sports Complex, Henderson

REGION 4-AA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS RB QB OL WR C DL DL LB

Aarion Palmer (SR.) Tyrone Wright (SR.) Malcolm Lemons (SR.) Terrell Goodson (SR.) Kyle Rackley (JR.) Kiara Jones (SR.) Kelvin Jones (SR.) Corey Hightower (SO.)

LB DB OL RB WR TE OL DB

Demetrus McCoy (SR.) Randy Nelson (SR.) Albarra Younis (SO.) Blake Mahoney (SR.) DeAngelo Perry (JR.) Perron Jenkins (JR.) Tremayne Lewis (SO.) Darrell Jones (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE No players graduated. All underclassmen last season.

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

H O W A R D

H U S K I E S Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

53


REGION 4-AAA FORECASTED FINISH

photo courtesy: Gina Herring

1. Jackson 2. Woodward Academy 3. Spalding 4. Mary Persons 5. Woodland 6. Rutland 7. Eagle’s Landing 8. South Atlanta 9. Maynard Jackson

PLAYERS TO WATCH PLAYER

son but lost most of their offensive line to graduation. Nonetheless, the Devils are loaded with skill performers including running back Quint McKibbon who is back for his senior season. Defensively, Neiron Ball is a top college prospect and should help Jackson repeat as region champs. Talk about loaded, Woodward Academy will have college scouts a plenty at their games this season. Even though Delino DeShields, Jr. transferred to Norcross, fullback Juwan Thompson and DE Henry Anderson are bona fide Division I prospects. Spalding should be very potent behind sophomore quarterback Casey Moody. Mary Persons will be young with only 7 starters returning including linebacker Tevin Davis a threeyear starter. Woodland will spread the field and should challenge for a playoff spot. Rutland will count on thousand yard rusher Michael Johnson but the Hurricanes must find a new quarterback. Cameron Hill will lead the defensive charges for Eagle’s Landing but quarterback Dylan Shaddix transferred to Henry County. South Atlanta and Maynard Jackson will be hard-pressed to improve.

FINAL 2008 STANDINGS

Jackson was the class of the region last sea-

POSITION

SCHOOL

Juwan Thompson

FB

Woodward A.

Neiron Ball

LB

Jackson

Tevin Davis

LB

Mary Persons

Henry Anderson

DE

Woodward A.

Michael Johnson

RB

Rutland

REGION

OVERALL

8-0-0

10-0-0

2. Woodward Acad. 7-1-0

8-4-0

3. Mary Persons

5-3-0

7-4-0

4. Eagle’s Landing 5-3-0

6-5-0

5. Woodland

5-3-0

5-5-0

6. Spalding

3-5-0

4-6-0

7. Rutland

3-6-0

2-8-0

8. S. Atlanta

1-7-0

1-9-0

9. M. Jackson

0-8-0

1-9-0

1. Jackson


MARY PERSONS 2008 WRAP: The Bulldogs jumped out of the gate and registered four straight wins before running into region heavyweights Jackson, Woodland, and Woodward Academy. The ‘Dogs dropped all three of those contests but hung on for fourth position in the region and a spot in the state playoffs. However, Mary Persons lost to Burke County 42-14 in the opening round of the state to finish the year at 7-4.

DEFENSE: The Bulldogs defense will not be very big and the lack of size is a major concern to Walker. On the defensive front, Willie Stewart and Kenny Peterman offer some experience. All-region standout Tevin Davis is back at his linebacker spot. Senior Jontae Hammond will also be back. In the secondary, Mary Persons lost their top corner in Chaz Avery, who was an all-state performer. A pair of seniors: Jordan Harvey and Kendall Head do return as the ‘Dogs hope to show a little more speed this season.

OFFENSE: The Bulldogs enter the new season with a true quarterback battle for Head Coach Rodney Walker. Dustin SPECIAL TEAMS: Dalton Rozier reCalder might be the better athlete but tunds as the Bulldogs place kicker and Taylor Williams is probably the better he’ll take over punting duties for the passer of the two competitors. Whoev- departed Devin Chambliss (now at er lands the starting job, there should GMC). Avery was the top return man be some speed behind him. Senior last season, so Tijun Avery, Rico OgleMeshari Walton is back at one running tree, and Jonathan Majors will battle back spot and a pair of sophomores: for that position. Tijun Avery and Rico Ogletree should also see plenty of action. The COACH WALKER SAYS: receiving group is very inex“We should have a little more speed and be a perienced with senior Jonalittle better athletically. We’ll look like an old than Majors the only sure Mary Persons team size wise. I hope we have starter at this point. Up front, the heart and desire of an old M.P. team” the ‘Dogs will miss Jadareius Hamlin who has moved on to the college ranks at Middle Tennessee WE THINK: The Bulldogs want to State. Coach Walker does have a pair play old fashioned Mary Persons footof veterans in center Ben Pierson and ball this year which means run the ball, guard Nick Watson. The rest of the chew up the clock, and play tough deoffensive line will consist of seniors fense. Another playoff berth could be Houston Cass and Jermaine Alford as in the works but the region is loaded well as junior Russell Dye. Sophomore with the likes of Jackson, Woodland, Jay Beckham will also contribute. and Woodward. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ Morgan County

S.4

Lamar County

S.11

Rutland

S.18

@ South Atlanta

S.25

Jackson

O.2

@ Woodland

O.9

@ Eagle’s Landing

O.23

Woodward Academy

O.30 N.7

@ Spalding Maynard Jackson M A R Y

56

2008 RESULTS

Morgan County @ Lamar County @ Rutland South Atlanta @ Jackson Woodland Eagle’s Landing @ Woodward Academy Spalding @ Maynard Jackson @ Burke County

W W W W L L W L W W L

BY THE NUMBERS

20-14 35-7 34-6 42-21 6-24 16-23 33-12 9-28 45-21 31-0 14-42

6

Former Mary Persons standout Peppi Zellner enjoyed a 6-year NFL career from 1999-2004. Zellner played for Dallas, Washington, and Arizona. He recorded 102 career tackles and 9 sacks.

Tevin Davis

BULLDOGS FILE

HEAD COACH

Rodney Walker (4th year: 18-14-0) Overall (37th year: 278-131-3)

COACHING STAFF

Pat Burdette, Grant Chesnut, Brian Nelson, Jeremy Rayburn, David Carey, Kevin Yancey, Jonathan Gastley

2008 RECORD 7-4-0

LAST 3 YEARS 18-14-0

LAST 5 YEARS 34-21-0

STADIUM Dan Pitts

REGION 4-AAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS LB RB WR C OL DB DB QB

Tevin Davis (SR.) Meshari Walton (SR.) Jonathan Majors (SR.) Ben Pierson (SR.) Nick Watson (SR.) Kendall Head (SR.) Jordan Harvey (SR.) Dustin Calder (SR.)

B U L L D O G S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

Willie Stewart (SR.) Jontae Hammond (JR.) Kenny Peterman (SR.) Russell Dye (JR.) Jermaine Alford (SR.) Houston Cass (SR.) Rico Ogletree (SO.) Tijun Avery (SO.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE OL Jadareius Hamlin, WR Chris Bowden, OL Devin Chambliss, RB Jeffry Powers, DB Chaz Avery

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

P E R S O N S

DL LB DL OL OL OL RB RB

photo courtesy: Gina Herring

BULLDOGS


RUTLAND 2008 WRAP: The Hurricanes dropped their first eight games under first year Head Coach George Collins but rallied to win their final two to close the season at 2-8. Quarterback Jamel Hickey was injured early forcing Ryan Bartholomew into the starting role.

DEFENSE: While the Rutland offensive line has some experience, the dline is very young. Jonathan Johnson is back at a defensive end spot while the rest of the unit will be made up of Darius Tucker, Myron Smith, and Holden Copeland. The Hurricanes lost some good performers at linebacker in Deshonvarus Lundy and Marcus Ligon but senior Dakota Tolliver is back. Expect Richard Cherry and Markese Farrar to join Tolliver to give the ‘Canes a solid group. The secondary will be paced by Dion Pinkney and Gil Fruster, who led Rutland with 3 interceptions last season. Former HoCo Head Coach Doug Johnson moves to defensive coordinator this season.

OFFENSE: George Collins is a former offensive lineman having played in the NFL with the St. Louis Cardinals, so the Rutland coach knows a thing or two about solid line play. That’s what he likes about his Hurricane squad this season. “I think the line has a chance to be pretty good,” says Collins. Michael Payne will anchor the line from his center position. Tackles Tre’ Worriels and Jaleel Brown are both returning starters. Patrick Williams and Si- SPECIAL TEAMS: Jacob Potts will mon Dollar give the ‘Canes experience take over place kicking duties with at the guard slots and tight end Blair Jonathan Jackson back as punter. Brown is a proven performer. Fruster, Tolliver, and Sanford give the While Collins is pleased with his offen- ‘Canes a return threat. sive line’s outlook, he’s also COACH COLLINS SAYS: thrilled to have Michael John“Our depth is a concern so staying injury free son retuning to the backfield. will be key for us. We also must improve our Johnson rushed for over 1000 kicking game.” yards last season and he’s expected to have a big season. Jarkeemy Sanford has gotten stronger and joins Johnson in the WE THINK: While the Hurricanes backfield. Colby Clarington will move should be a better football team, the from wide receiver to quarterback and schedule makers didn’t do them any replace Ryan Bartholomew who trans- favors with five tough games right out ferred to Tattnall. Clarington win pilot of the gate. If Rutland can post a couthe ‘Canes “Hybrid Wing-T” offense ple of early wins and gain some conand Collins says Clarington is “very fidence, they might be able to chalcoach able.” lenge for a playoff spot. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.27

Southwest

S.4

@ Peach County

S.11

@ Mary Persons

S.18

Jackson

S.25

@ Woodland

O.2

@ Eagle’s Landing

O.16

Woodward Academy

O.23

@ Spalding

O.31 N.7

Maynard Jackson South Atlanta

2008 RESULTS

Southwest Peach County Mary Persons @ Jackson Woodland Eagle’s Landing @ Woodward Academy Spalding @ Maynard Jackson @ South Atlanta

R U T L A N D

L L L L L L L L W W

BY THE NUMBERS

0-7 6-26 6-34 6-24 18-34 20-27 18-52 18-19 38-13 34-20

3

The Hurricanes coaching staff features three former head coaches: Bubba Williams (Jones County: 19841993), Doug Johnson (Houston County: 1991-2006), and George Collins who was previously the head man at Perry and Houston County.

photo courtesy: Lee Childers

HURRICANES

Michael Johnson

HURRICANES FILE

HEAD COACH

George Collins (2nd year: 2-8-0) Overall (9th year: 23-57-0)

COACHING STAFF

Chip Stuart, Doug Johnson, Bubba Williams, Wall Pritchard, John Rodgers, Chad Averett, Ron Christian, Tony Jones, David Kelly, Trent Allen

2008 RECORD 2-8-0

LAST 3 YEARS 13-18-0

LAST 5 YEARS 16-35-0

STADIUM Ed Defore

REGION 4-AAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS SS RB LB DB DB QB LB DE

Dakota Tolliver (SR.) Michael Johnson (SR.) Richard Cherry (SR.) Dion Pinkney (SR.) Gil Fruster (SR.) Colby Clarington (SR.) Markese Farrar (SR.) Jonathan Johnson (SR.)

OL OL OL TE DE FS RB OL

Patrick Williams (SR.) Jaleel Brown (JR.) Tre’ Worriels (JR.) Blair Brown (SR.) Holden Copeland (SR.) Greg Williams (SR.) Jarkeemy Sanford (JR.) Michael Payne (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE LB Deshonvarus Lundy, LB Marcus Ligon, RB Jamel Hickey, LB Bryant Harrison, DE Preston Sanford, C Seth Sutton

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

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57


REGION 2-A FORECASTED FINISH

photo courtesy: Mike Newman

1. Wilcox County 2. Twiggs County 3. Dooly County 4. Turner County 5. Hawkinsville 6. Telfair County 7. Irwin County PLAYERS TO WATCH PLAYER

last season before falling to Lincoln County in the state playoffs. The Patriots return all-state quarterback Nick Marshall as well as Nate Moorhouse and Lonnie Outlaw at receiver which makes this offense look very scary to their opposition. Twiggs County will move wide receiver Laquavius Troup from wide receiver to quarterback. The Cobras return outstanding running back Ernest Butts plus all-state receiver Darqueze Dennard, but the defense could be questionable. Dooly County should challenge for a playoff berth with Keith Mumphrey and Ben Miller giving the Bobcats a tremendous one-two punch at receiver. Arsenio Watkins is also back at quarterback. Turner County lost some talented performers like QB Kevion Newberry so the Rebels will be hardpressed to match their 10 win total of a year ago. Nonetheless, a playoff berth is certainly a possibility. Hawkinsville hopes to rebound from a 3-7 campaign. Fabian Forrest returns to the Red Devil backfield ready to give opposing defenses fits. Telfair County will be paced by quarterback Alex Conley. Irwin County returns 19 starters and should be better.

FINAL 2008 STANDINGS

Wilcox County ran the table in region play

POSITION

SCHOOL

Nate Moorhouse

WR

Wilcox County

Keith Mumphery

WR

Dooly County

Fabian Forrest

RB

Hawkinsville

Ernest Butts

RB

Twiggs County

Nick Marshall

QB

Wilcox County

REGION

OVERALL

1. Wilcox County

6-0-0

12-1-0

2. Turner County

5-1-0

10-3-0

3. Twiggs County

4-2-0

8-3-0

4. Dooly County

2-4-0

4-7-0

5. Hawkinsville

2-4-0

3-7-0

6. Telfair County

1-5-0

4-6-0

7. Irwin County

1-5-0

2-8-0


WILCOX COUNTY 2008 WRAP: The 2008 season was another wild and successful ride for the Patriots. They followed up their run to the state finals in 2007 with a trip to the state quarter-finals. Mark Ledford’s crew rattled off twelve straight wins lighting up the scoreboard with 30 or more points ten times during the season. The Patriots chase for a state title ended in late November with a 27-12 loss to Lincoln County on the Red Devils home field.

DEFENSE: The Patriots defense is often over-looked because of the team’s prolific offense but Coach Ledford has some players on this side of the ball as well. Seniors Tyrell Miller, Justin Harden and Deion Adams will lead the charge up front along with another senior, Johnny Brown. Antonio James was the team’s leading tackler last season and he returns for his senior season at linebacker along with Bryce Cohen and Rod Lawson. The secondary is solid and features Nate Moorhouse, Tay Porter, Quez Mahogany, Jatarius Jackson and Nick Marshall.

OFFENSE: The Patriots were nearly unstoppable when they had the ball in 2008. They were held under 20 points only one time in 13 games and that came in the playoffs against Lincoln SPECIAL TEAMS: Patrick McGuinty County. Gone from that high-flying will handle the kicking duties while attack is running back Antonio Marshall Nate Moorhouse and Brandon Lawson and wide receiver Kwamaine Outlaw hold down the punting slot. Tyrell Miller but many of the parts to the machine and Tay Porter provide a duel threat in return. Heading up the returnees is the return department. gifted junior quarterback Nick Marshall. He’ll have plenty of passCOACH LEDFORD SAYS: catching targets including “If we play within our abilities we’ll have a 6’7” senior Lonnie Outlaw, chance to win every game we play. We’ve got Marcus Griffin and Tay Porter. some big goals for the year but we must take A committee of runners will try just one game at a time.” and fill the shoes of Antonio Marshall who rushed for over fifteen hundred yards and scored more WE THINK: The offense will once than twenty touchdowns last season. again provide plenty of fireworks with That committee includes Andy Scott, Nick Marshall running the show and Jatarius Jackson, Antonio James and the defense has enough players to Brandon Lawson. Five seniors make make the stops when they need to. up a very experienced offensive line After falling just short of a state title led by Tommy Fuller, Tyler McWhorter the past two seasons, Patriot fans are and Chad Paramoor. hopeful this is their year. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

Seminole County

S.4

Perry

S.11

@ Wilkinson County

S.18

@ Bryan County

S.25

@ Twiggs County

O.2

Telfair County

O.16

Dooly County

O.23

Hawkinsville

O.30 N.6

@ Turner County @ Irwin County W I L C O X

2008 RESULTS

@ Seminole County @ Perry Wilkinson County Bryan County Twiggs County @ Telfair County @ Dooly County @ Hawkinsville Turner County Irwin County Seminole County Schley County @ Lincoln County

W W W W W W W W W W W W L

40-0 47-21 30-14 51-26 63-34 49-7 27-12 35-17 21-20 34-7 34-20 34-13 12-27

BY THE NUMBERS

12

The Patriots won their first 12 games of the 2008 season before losing to Lincoln County in the state playoffs. The 12 straight wins is the longest winning streak in school history.

Nick Marshall

PAT R I O T S F I L E

HEAD COACH

Mark Ledford (9th Year: 55-36-1)

COACHING STAFF Josh Owens, Tim Harris, Clint Bloodsworth

2008 RECORD 12-1-0

LAST 3 YEARS 34-6-0

LAST 5 YEARS 42-18-0

STADIUM Patriot

REGION 2-A

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB DB RB WR TE OL OL

Nick Marshall (JR.) Andy Scott (JR.) Nate Moorhouse (SR.) Antonio James (SR.) Lonnie Outlaw (SR.) Marcus Griffin (SR.) Tommy Fuller (SR.) Tyler McWhorter (SR.)

OL DL DL DL LB LB RB DB

Chad Paramoor (SR.) Justin Harden (SR.) Deion Adams (SR.) Tyrell Miller (SR.) Antonio James (SR.) Bruce Cohen (SR.) Jatarius Jackson (JR.) Tay Porter (JR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE RB Antonio Marshall, DL Breon Porter WR Kwamaine Outlaw, OL Trea Clack,

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

C O U N T Y

P A T R I O T S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

59

photo courtesy: Mike Newman

PAT R I O T S


DOOLY COUNTY 2008 WRAP: The Bobcats could never really find their stride in 2008 although they did manage to win four games make it into the state playoffs where they lost to Miller County 14-6 in the opening round. Darryl Silas’ squad never strung together a win streak last season although they did show flashes of promise at various times during the season.

DEFENSE: The Bobcats will rotate several players on the defensive front including lone senior David Turner as well as underclassmen: Damian Manning, Geraud Lewis, Edmond Stephens and Lakourtney Bryant. Jabiaos Glenn was an All-State lineman in 2008 and he’ll again be one of the Bobcats featured performers from his linebacker slot. Reginald Zanders is another big time player at linebacker and Brandis Dixon will also contribute at the position. Arsenio Watkins, Keith Mumphrey and junior Jartavious Haugabrook will anchor a speedy secondary.

OFFENSE: The Bobcats Wing-T offense could be something to behold this season especially through the air. Receiver turned quarterback Arsenio Watkins to call the signals for the Cats. Watkins made the WR/QB switch late last season and started the SPECIAL TEAMS: Do everything final four games under center. He’ll player Keith Mumphrey will handle the have the luxury of throwing to not punting and place-kicking chores for one but two very talented receivers in the Bobcats although Coach Silas is Keith Mumphrey and Ben Miller. Both very fond of going for two after Dooly are big targets with good hands and County touchdowns. both are being heavily recruited by Division 1 schools. The runCOACH SILAS SAYS: ning game will feature senior “This is the best we’ve been at the skill posiBrandis Dixon while fellow tions since I’ve been here. Our offensive and senior Jabiaos Glenn will condefensive lines are key to us having a very tribute from his fullback pogood season but depth is also a worry.” sition. DeMario Jackson and James Muse will also fit into the backfield mix. Up font, the ‘Cats WE THINK: The key for the Cats will will miss lineman Marcus Carter from be the whether the offensive line gives last year’s squad. Sophomore center Arsenio Watkins time to throw the ball Ja’Eric Lundy will anchor the Dooly downfield to his very talented receivCounty offensive line. He’ll get plenty ers. If they do their job the Bobcats of help from seniors David Turner and have the potential to make some noise Xavier Colbert along with junior tackle in Region 2A. Damian Manning. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ Crisp County

S.4

@ Macon County

S.11

Northeast

S.18

Warren County

S.25

Telfair County

O.9

Hawkinsville

O.16

@ Wilcox County

O.23

@ Turner County

O.30 N.6

@ Irwin County Twiggs County D O O L Y

60

2008 RESULTS

Crisp County Macon County @ Northeast @ Warren County @ Telfair County @ Hawkinsville Wilcox County Turner County Irwin County @ Twiggs County @ Miller County

L W L W L W L L W L L

BY THE NUMBERS

6-28 28-8 16-43 37-14 18-35 25-7 12-27 0-18 41-0 21-34 6-14

3

Dooly County has claimed 3 region football titles: 1983, 1984, and their last region championship which was 10 years ago in 1999.

Keith Mumphrey

B O B C AT S F I L E

HEAD COACH

Darryl Silas (5th year: 32-22)

COACHING STAFF Bryant Anderson, Roy Dale, Aaron Green, Kenneth Kellogg, Towandi King, Charles Neal, Ricky Weston

2008 RECORD 4-7-0

LAST 3 YEARS 20-13-0

LAST 5 YEARS 32-22-0

STADIUM The Grove

REGION 2-A

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB WR WR OL OL OL

Arsenio Watkins (JR.) Brandis Dixon (SR.) Keith Mumphrey (SR.) Ben Miller (SR.) Damian Manning (JR.) David Turner (SR.) Ja’Eric Lundy (SO.)

B O B C A T S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

OL DL DL DL LB DB RB

Xavier Colbert (SR.) Geraud Lewis (SO.) Edmond Stephens (JR.) Lakourtney Bryant (JR.) Jabiaos Glenn (SR.) Jartavious Haugabrook (JR.) DeMario Jackson (JR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE QB Kentez Williams, WR Marcus Bryant, RB Robert Bowens, OL Marcus Carter

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

C O U N T Y

photo courtesy: Mike Newman

B O B C AT S


HAWKINSVILLE 2008 WRAP: The Red Devils struggled to put points on the scoreboard all season long and the results showed in the won-loss column. Only twice in ten games did Hawkinsville score 20 or more points which added up to a 3-7 record in Cam Black’s first year as head coach and a spot outside of the playoffs in Region 2A. Turnovers also plagued the Red Devils thwarting the offense and often times putting the defense in precarious positions.

DEFENSE: The Red Devils are usually known for playing good defense and they have a nice mix of experience and youth this season. With the absence of Bozeman and Jenkins, coach Black will count on sophomore La’Darius McNair who will handle the nose guard duties. He’ll get help from junior Trevis Lawson along with J’Vonne Thomas and Mart McLeod. The linebacking corps is young led by sophomores Wade Fegley and Jonathan Wright. Tyler Forrest will also see action at linebacker. The secondary is a little more seasoned with juniors Fabian Forrest and Brandon Adams joining up with seniors Tevin Wilcox and Jamil Wright.

OFFENSE: Aaron Black is back for his third year as the Red Devil’s starting quarterback and head coach Cam Black is confident Aaron can get the offense back on track. Talented junior Fabian Forrest is back to carry the SPECIAL TEAMS: Junior Don Vickball. Forrest is a playmaker who has ers will handle the Hawkinsville kickthe potential to break a big play every ing duties. He succeeds his brother time he touches the ball. He will get Gregg who graduated. Fabian Forrest help from his brother, freshman Ty- is a dangerous return man. ler Forrest, along with junior J’Vonne Thomas. When the Red Devils COACH BLACK SAYS: throw, Black will look to Ken “I hope we’re gonna be better than 3-7. We Polhill, Brandon Adams and have some depth up front and most of our oftight end Martavious Jenkins fensive line is back. If we stay healthy we can to catch the ball and get up have a good year.” the field. Juniors Dylan Fields and Mart McLeod anchor the offensive line along with Evan Ander- WE THINK: The Red devils have the son and Taylor Sapp. The Devils will potential to be much better. The key undoubtedly miss big Demetrius Boze- will be the play of QB Aaron Black who man who played on both the offensive has two years of starting experience and defensive front. Bozeman signed under his belt. The offense must prowith Valdosta State. Tanner Jenkins is duce more points and cut down on another lineman the Devils will have turnovers to keep the defense from to replace. having to defend a short field. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

Jenkins County

S.4

Fitzgerald

S.11

@ Perry

S.18

@ Claxton

O.2

Irwin County

0.9

@ Dooly County

0.16

Twiggs County

O.23

@ Wilcox County

O.30 N.6

Telfair County @ Turner County

2008 RESULTS

@ Jenkins County @ Fitzgerald Perry Claxton @ Irwin County Dooly County @ Twiggs County Wilcox County @ Telfair County Turner County

W L L L W L L L W L

14-6 0-42 16-48 9-22 27-21 7-25 9-13 17-35 27-24 3-34

BY THE NUMBERS

2

There have been 2 decades in which the Devils have won multiple state titles, During the 1950’s, Hawkinsville won 3 state titles: 1953, 1954, and 1959. During the 2000’s, Hawkinsville won titles in 2003 and 2004.

Fabian Forrest

RED DEVILS FILE

HEAD COACH

Cam Black (2nd season: 3-7-0)

COACHING STAFF David Daniel, Will Conner, Cote Jones, Ross Scott, Tony Lester, Brad Cooley, Nathan Thompson, Keith Warnock, Stephen McDuffie

2008 RECORD 3-7-0

LAST 3 YEARS 15-18-0

LAST 5 YEARS 38-22-1

STADIUM Bobby Gentry

REGION 2-A

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB OL OL OL WR TE DL

Aaron Black (SR.) Fabian Forrest (JR.) Dylan Folds (JR.) Evan Anderson (JR.) Taylor Sapp (SR.) Ken Pohill (JR.) Martavious Jenkins (SR.) La’Darius McNair (SO.)

DL DL DL LB LB DB DB DB

Trevis Lawson (JR.) J’Vonne Thomas (SR.) Mart McLeod (SR.) Wade Fegley (SO.) Jonathan Wright (SO.) Tevin Wilcox (SR.) Brandon Adams (JR.) Jamil Wright (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE DL Demetrius Bozeman, K Gregg Vickers, TE Shannon Williams, OL Tanner Jenkins

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

H A W K I N S V I L L E

R E D

D E V I L S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

61

photo courtesy: Mike Newman

RED DEVILS


TWIGGS CO. COBRAS

2008 WRAP: The Cobras used a big play offense led by quarterback Javarus Mallard and an opportunistic defense to win eight games and make the state playoffs. Dexter Copeland’s squad strung together a three game win streak early in the season and a five game streak late in the year en route to a berth in the post-season playoffs where they lost to Clinch County in the first round.

DEFENSE: The defensive side of the ball could be a concern for the Cobras this season but there are some big time players. Junior Josh Byron had twelve sacks from his defensive end position in 2008. He also returned two fumbles for touchdowns. Ricktavious Thomas will also see a lot of action along the defensive line. Linebacker Johnathan Fitzpatrick was an All-State performer in 2008. Fitzpatrick had over one hundred tackles last season and is an intimidating presence on the field. The defensive backfield will be anchored by 6’2” 200 pound safety Jeremy Stanley along with Darqueze Dennard and Daven Bell.

OFFENSE: Replacing departed QB Javarus Mallard will be difficult to do. Mallard rushed for over seven hundred yards and passed for a thousand more. Laquavius Troup will make the move from wide receiver to quarterback for his senior season. He will have a bevy SPECIAL TEAMS: The kicking game of good running backs to help lighten has never been a strength for the Cohis load. Junior Ernest Butts rushed bras. Jeremy Stanley will handle the for over one thousand yards in 2008 punting and place kicking duties in and should provide more excitement 2009. this season. Seniors Daven Bell and Adrian Hightower will also COACH COPELAND SAYS: get plenty of carries in Coach “The key is gonna be our quarterback play. Copeland’s Wing-T offense. This is the first time we’ve had some depth Senior Darqueze Dennard is on our line. If we can stop giving up big plays an all-state performer who on defense I think we’ll be okay.” can do a little bit of everything and is especially dangerous catching the football. Dennard will WE THINK: The Cobras success may have his hands on the ball a lot this hinge on their quarterback play. If season. Four year starter Chris Ross Laquavius Troup can handle the quaranchors the Cobras offensive line along terbacking duties there is enough talwith three year starter Ricktavious ent around him to produce seven to Thomas, center DeGeorge Reeves and eight wins and get the Cobras back senior Steve Durham. into the state playoffs. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

Wilkinson County

S.4

@ Hancock Central

S.11

@ Southwest

S.25

Wilcox County

O.2

Turner County

O.9

Irwin County

O.16

@ Hawkinsville

O.23

@ Telfair County

O.30

Calhoun Falls

N.6

@ Dooly County

2008 RESULTS

@ Wilkinson County Hancock Central Southwest @ Wilcox County @ Turner County @ Irwin County Hawkinsville Telfair County @ Calhoun Falls (S.C.) Dooly County @ Clinch County

T W I G G S

62

W W W L L W W W W W L

BY THE NUMBERS

28-12 47-12 24-21 34-63 14-36 15-9 13-9 35-14 53-6 34-21 19-44

97

Twiggs County and Wilcox County put on an offensive show with 97 points on the board in their meeting last year. The Cobras scored 34 but were defeated 63-34 by the Patriots.

Ernest Butts

COBRAS FILE

HEAD COACH

Dexter Copeland (9th year: 62-30-0)

COACHING STAFF Stacey Watters. Randall Owens, Loy Andrews, Kip Wilson

2008 RECORD 8-3-0

LAST 3 YEARS 19-13-0

LAST 5 YEARS 31-24-0

STADIUM The Pit

REGION 2-A

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB RB RB WR OL DL

Laquavius Troup (SR.) Ernest Butts (JR.) Daven Bell (SR.) Adrian Hightower (SR.) Darqueze Dennard (SR.) Chris Ross (SR.) Ricktavious Thomas (JR.)

C O B R A S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

DeGeorge Reeves (JR.) Steve Durham (SR.) Denzell Shine (JR.) Josh Byron (JR.) Johnathan Fitzpatrick(SR.) Jeremy Stanley (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE

QB Javarus Mallard, RB Tariq Booker LB Kino Waters, LB D.J. Durham

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

C O U N T Y

OL OL LB DE LB DB


REGION 1-AAA FORECASTED FINISH 1. Peach County 2. Cairo 3. Crisp County 4. Monroe 5. Dougherty 6. Worth County 7. Westover 7. Perry PLAYERS TO WATCH PLAYER

seasons, but the Syrupmakers lost 18 starters from last year’s state AAA championship team. Meanwhile, Peach County returns 14 starters and Chad Campbell’s Trojans may be ready to seize the top spot in 1-AAA. Patirck Taylor and Travis Richmond will lead a very speedy offense while defensively, the linebacking corps should be outstanding led by Kelcey Lewis. Cairo will have to re-load but there are some underclassmen ready to make their mark. QB Brian Walker will lead the offense which should be solid. The defense should be quick with Jermyrin Bodiford returning in the secondary. The rest of the region race appears up for grabs. Crisp County features linebacker Tommy Sanders as the Cougars return 10 starters including three-year starting quarterback Chris Yowe. Monroe returns 16 starters paced by quarterback Justin Pride who will operate behind a veteran offensive line. Running Back Arabian Williams will lead Dougherty and the Trojans could be better. Worth County welcomes new coach Scotty Ward. He’ll count on defensive end Justin Tukes. Westover has returning quarterback Rashad Jackson. Perry has some experience returning defensively as the Panthers try and rebound from a disappointing 2008.

FINAL 2008 STANDINGS

Cairo has been the team to beat the past two

POSITION

SCHOOL

Tommy Sanders

LB

Crisp County

Patrick Taylor

QB

Peach County

Justin Pride

QB

Monroe

Jermyrin Bodiford

DB

Cairo

Rashad Jackson

QB

Westover

REGION

OVERALL

1. Cairo

7-0-0

14-0-0

2. Peach County

6-1-0

8-3-0

3. Crisp County

4-3-0

6-5-0

4. Dougherty

4-3-0

6-5-0

5. Worth County

3-4-0

5-5-0

6. Westover

2-5-0

5-5-0

7. Monroe

1-6-0

4-6-0

8. Perry

1-6-0

2-8-0


PEACH COUNTY TROJANS

2008 WRAP: The Trojans were a little bit of a Jekyll and Hyde team in 2008. They cracked the 40 point mark three times during the regular season en route to winning eight regular season games including six in the region. However in the Trojans three losses they scored a total of 17 points including 7 in a 22-7 loss to Shaw in the opening round of the state playoffs.

DEFENSE: The Trojans have some excellent athletes on defense which is no surprise. Senior nose guard Tyler Nobles is tough to block as is junior defensive end Randolph Williams. Rennard Williams will see action on both offense and defense. Octavius Hall, sophomore Ryan Bowman and Kelcey Lewis are playmakers at the linebacker positions. Luke Crowell is an excellent rover back and LaBrandon Johnson, Reggie Manson and Darion Howard are a trio of excellent corner backs. The only real question mark for the Trojan defense is who will play the safety slots.

OFFENSE: Part of the Trojans problems on offense in 2008 stemmed from injuries. Quarterback Patrick Taylor suffered a hip injury against Rutland in the second week of the season just as he was hitting his stride running the offense. Taylor’s injury severely SPECIAL TEAMS: Senior kicker curtailed what the Trojans could do Rustin Evatt is a big weapon for the when they had the ball. The good news Trojans. He has 50-yard field goal is Taylor is back healthy and anxious range which makes him a factor in any to show out for his senior season. He’ll close game the Trojans play. Coach have plenty of weapons at his disposal Campbell must find a return man to including junior running back Travis replace Tavarus Simmons. Richmond who was bothered COACH CAMPBELL SAYS: by an ankle sprain last year. “We’ve got a chance to be pretty good if we Peach County always has can avoid any major injuries. We should comgood receivers and this pete a lot better than we have the past two year’s crop features Lamar years.” Zanders and Isaiah Miller along with three year starter Courtney Mathis at tight end. The line WE THINK: The Trojans are is led by senior Tervarus Ages. He’s downright scary on offense with the a three year starter whom Coach potential to put 40 points on the board Chad Campbell calls the “bell cow” of almost every week. If the defense the offensive front. He’s joined in the can hold its own then this Peach team trenches by another three year starter has the potential to march deep into in Telvin Zanders who can play guard the playoffs. and center. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

Macon County

S.4

Rutland

S.11

@ Baldwin

S.25

Perry

O.2

@ Monroe

O.9

Cairo

O.16

@ Westover

O.23

@ Worth County

O.30 N.6

Dougherty @ Crisp County P E A C H

64

2008 RESULTS

@ Macon County @ Rutland Baldwin @ Perry Monroe @ Cairo Westover Worth County @ Dougherty Crisp County Shaw

W W L W W L W W W W L

BY THE NUMBERS

42-6 26-6 3-13 14-0 43-7 7-16 42-0 30-13 29-14 38-7 7-22

10

Since 1990, Peach County has won at least 10 games in a season 10 times. Prior to 1990 the most wins by a Trojan team in a single season was 7.

Patrick Taylor

TROJANS FILE

HEAD COACH

Chad Campbell (3rd year: 16-6-0)

COACHING STAFF Todd Cooper, Rickey Wray, Nathan Clark, Jeffrey Bailey, Sherwin Lyons, John Smith, Bernard Young, Eric Solomon

2008 RECORD 8-3-0

LAST 3 YEARS 30-7-0

LAST 5 YEARS 53-12-0

STADIUM Anderson

REGION 1-AAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB WR WR OL OL DL OL

Patrick Taylor (SR.) Travis Richmond (JR.) Lamar Zanders (SR.) Isaiah Miller (JR.) Tervarus Ages (SR.) Telvin Zanders (SR.) Renard Williams (JR.) Brandon Wiggins (SO.)

DB Reggie Taylor, DB Tavarus Simmons, OL Matt High, WR Alex Byrd

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS

T R O J A N S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

Courtney Mathis (SR.) Randolph Williams (JR.) Tyler Nobles (SR.) Octavius Hall (JR.) Ryan Bowman (SO.) Kelcey Lewis (SR.) Luke Crowell (SR.) LaBrandon Johnson (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE

PLAYOFF TEAM C O U N T Y

TE DL DL LB LB LB DB DB


Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

65


PERRY 2008 WRAP: The 2008 season was one the Panthers and head coach Andy Scott would like to forget. Looking to build upon a run into the state quarterfinals in 2007, the Panthers imploded losing four games in the final three minutes of the fourth quarter mainly due to mistakes. In fact, the Panthers set a school record for turnovers in 2008. The result was a 2-8 record and a spot on the sidelines when state playoff time rolled around.

DEFENSE: There is plenty of senior experience on the defensive side of the ball. All in all, six starters return defensively. Big Quentin Stripling and Savian Marshall along with Brock Daughtry, Orlando Dugger and Trey Fairfax will man the front wall along with junior Larry Whitfield. The linebacking corps is led by seniors Tevin Riley and Nathan Murphy along with Marquee Owens. The secondary will be paced by a pair of seniors: Preston Mitchell and Brandon Smith. They will be joined by the very talented Jeremy Bogan who started all ten games last season as a freshman.

OFFENSE: Junior Brent Gentry will lead the Panther offense. Gentry started five games as a sophomore. He’s a leader who also played catcher SPECIAL TEAMS: Coach Scott thinks on the Panthers baseball team that his kicking game will be a strength. made it all the way to the state semi- The quarterback Brent Gentry is also finals. Perry will have a lot of depth an experienced punter while senior at running back with senior Brandon place kicker Mattie Hall has a strong Grace leading the way. Grace will get leg. help from sophomores Malikee Bailey and Calvin Howard. Junior COACH SCOTT SAYS: Trey King is a force at full“The chemistry on this team is outstanding. back. Top-flight receiver Trey We’re gonna learn from last season’s adverSmith graduated but former sity and come back stronger and with a will quarterback Dardra Ragin to win the close games.” and Jarod Billings will look to fill his shoes. Tight end Tyler Martens is one of the best around and WE THINK: To get back in the playoff will definitely figure into the Panther hunt will be very challenging in the deoffense. Coach Scott will start 2 se- manding Region 1-AAA. There is talniors, 2 juniors and a sophomore on ent on both sides of the ball but the the offensive line. Center Heath Whid- schedule is a backbreaker. The Pandon and Cole Bledsoe are the seniors thers open with road games against who should provide leadership and Northside and Wilcox County. muscle up front. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.27

Northside

S.4

@ Wilcox County

S.11

Hawkinsville

S.18

Westover

S.25

@ Peach County

O.2

@ Crisp County

O.16

@ Worth County

O.23

Cairo

O.30 N.6

Monroe Dougherty

2008 RESULTS

@ Northside Wilcox County @ Hawkinsville @ Westover Peach County Crisp County Worth County @ Cairo @ Monroe Dougherty

BY THE NUMBERS

19-38 21-47 48-16 21-28 0-14 15-18 17-34 10-42 21-20 7-21

310

Last season, Perry offensive lineman Johnnie Farms tipped the scales at 310 pounds. Farms was an allstate performer and signed a college scholarship with North Carolina.

Dardra Ragin

PA N T H E R S F I L E

HEAD COACH

Andy Scott (4th year: 26-20-0)

COACHING STAFF Fort Holstead, Rod Harris, Chris Brown, Carl Dixon, Kelvin McDavis, Bob Daughtry, Torrey Howard, Sam Said, Greg Nix

2008 RECORD 2-8-0

LAST 3 YEARS 18-16-0

LAST 5 YEARS 31-26-0

STADIUM Herb St. John (Panther Pit)

REGION 1-AAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB RB WR WR TE OL OL

Brent Gentry (JR.) Brandon Grace (SR.) Trey King (JR.) Dardra Ragin (SR.) Jarod Billings (SR.) Tyler Mertens (SR.) Heath Whiddon (SR.) Cole Bledsoe (SR.)

P A N T H E R S Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

DL DL DL LB LB DB DB K

Quentin Stripling (SR.) Savian Marshall (SR.) Brock Daughtry (SR.) Tevin Riley (SR.) Nathan Murphy (SR.) Preston Mitchell (SR.) Jeremy Bogan (SO.) Mattie Hall (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE OL Johnnie Farms, WR Trey Smith, DB Tay Brown, RB Jacorey Lane

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

P E R R Y

66

L L W L L L L L W L

photo courtesy: Mike Newman

PA N T H E R S


NOT

Your Grandmothers

CHEERLEADING At Jones County, cheerleading has taken on a whole new meaning. In fact, the Greyhounds have two different teams: one to cheer and one to compete. They even have their very own facility! BY BRAD BIBB

C

heerleading has been part of the American fabric since the late 1880’s when fans at Princeton University began to organize yells and coordinate chants to encourage their football team. Those humble beginnings evolved into what we now see across most football sidelines every weekend: a cheerleading squad trying to motivate fans to yell and “cheer” for their team. But, like most things, with evolution comes change; and cheerleading as we once knew it has reached a whole new level. No longer is cheerleading only for supporting the team in season, it’s developed into it’s own entity, it’s own sport if you will. Throughout central Georgia cheerleading competition has become as intense and believe it or not as “physical” as some of the more traditional sports, like football. Every high school has a cheerleading squad, but not every school has a cheerleading team. At Jones County, they have both. The squad is there to

support the various athletic teams and lead school spirit. The team is there to compete. Compete at the highest level of an increasingly growing sport, Cheerleading Competition. To try and describe Leah Bodnarchuk in just one word, “feisty” would be it. The former Jones County student spent her college days at Georgia College where, you guessed it, she was a cheerleader. It was that experience that led her back to Gray to start what is now a very successful cheerleading “competition” program. Bodnarchuk was named cheerleading coach in 1999. “I came from a college background and I wanted to start a program here,” she said. “Our Principal at the time said: “go for it,” so I did.” Problem was, Jones County wasn’t prepared to start a big-time cheerleading competition program. That’s where this word “feisty” comes in. In her first couple of seasons, Bodnarchuk and her cheerleading team used Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

to practice in a little area behind the bleachers in the school’s gymnasium. “It was very dangerous because of the stunts we were doing,” she recalls. “I finally went to the Athletic Director, my Principal, and the Superintendent and said we need our own building. I kinda got a little laugh from them. One day, my Principal came to me and said if you can raise this amount of money, we will build you a facility. It was actually offered to my team and the wrestling team (to share). We were given an amount of money to raise and the wrestling coach didn’t feel like he could raise that amount of money. I told my Principal I would raise both his part and mine if you give me the building. He laughed, but we had the money within three months,” she boasts. The Cheer Factory at Jones County was born. The Cheer Factory is a free-standing building used for the cheerleading team to practice. There are only a couple of facilities in the entire state dedicated

67


them perform and I fell in love with it. I was like, man I wanna do this!” Like many, Tribble became hooked, “in the beginning, I didn’t do well but Leah saw something in me, I guess.” The improvement continued and Tribble, now just as passionate about her coaching role, developed into a star performer. “She became one of my best cheerleaders ever,” says Bodnarchuk.

PERFECTION A perfect pyramid inside the Cheer Factory.

solely to the cheerleading team. “I believe we were the first,” says Bodnarchuk. “We’ve had a lot of Athletic Directors from different schools come and look at our facility,” she added. “It’s been great, because with Cheer Factory, we run a five-month long cheerleading/gymnastics class in the off-season. Some of our former students come back and teach the class. This past year we had about 120 kids participating in the class.” Jones County is one of many schools that now separate the cheerleading “support” team with the “competition” team. There are schools that allow their support team to compete with other “competition” teams, but Jones County decided to split the two. The decision is up to the individual institution. “At Jones County, we decided to split the squads,” said Bodnarchuk. “If you want to compete, you try-out for the competition team. Competition cheerleading is more of the athletic ability, the gymnastics, the stunting, high-level jump techniques and aerobic activity. If you want to be on the support team, you try-out for the football or basketball cheerleading squad. Other schools do it differently and allow both, but we decided it was best to divide the two.” The competition team competes in the Coed Division of the Georgia High

School Association which is comprised of 23 different teams at the Greyhounds level. Because some schools compete with boys and some do not, the Coed Division was formed in 2005. Even if you have only one boy on your roster, you are considered a coed team. Bodnarchuk says schools that have boys on the squad add a different dynamic. “Having guys makes you a little more athletic,” she states. But boys aren’t always eager to join the cheerleading team. “I have a lot of respect for teenage boys that do this because they do get picked on.” The peer pressure alone keeps some boys from joining the team. “We have guys who stick their head in (the Cheer Factory) and say: “man, I’d like to do that, but I just can’t.”” The popularity of the sport has grown each year and more and more athletes are finding fulfillment through cheerleading competition. Current Jones County assistant coach, Jill Tribble never dreamed she’d be a cheerleader. She added, “I was a softball player and I had no interest in cheerleading but most of my friends were doing it. I went to a competition and watched

HAPPY HOUNDS Bodnarchuk (center) hoists the 2006 State Championship trophy.

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Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

For Bodnarchuk the hard work and time put in to developing the Jones County program has paid dividends in two special ways. In 2005, Jones County was named “Team Of The Year” by the GCCA (Georgia Cheerleading Coaches Association) for dedication to their sport, their team, and to their community. Their philanthropic work centered around a fund-raising effort for the American Cancer Society in addition to raising enough money for the construction of their own facility, The Cheer Factory. The following year, the Greyhounds captured the 2006 GHSA state championship in the coed division. “Every time I think about that season I get chills,” remembers the coach. “I knew from the very beginning, we were gonna win. As a coach, you know when you have a team that has the ability to win.”


Mary Persons Claims Honor The Mary Persons High School Cheerleading squad was named GCCA Team Of The Year for 2008. The Bulldogs claimed the prestigious honor by virtue of their community support as well as their promotion of school spirit. Tailgate party appearances, community and school pep rallies, participating in a teacher adoption program in the elementary and middle schools, and wearing pink ribbons at games and competitions for Breast Awareness month were just a few of the ways these girls were able promote their sport, their spirit, and their sportsmanship for Mary Persons High School and the Monroe County School System. Congratulations M.P.! —from georgiacheer.com

Tattnall Celebrates Title The Tattnall Cheerleading squad claimed the 2008 GISA State Championship, the first in school history. Kelli Lane commented, “I love the thrill of the high paced routine, and after we perform it feels good to know that we did an awesome routine in just two minutes and thirty seconds.” Despite injuries and nervous jitters, the squad was able to confidently perform their routine to capture the top prize. Coach Michelle Bacchus was named GISA Coach of the Year Award. Congratulations Trojans!

69


CLASS AA FORECASTED FINISH

photo courtesy: PeachSports.com

1. Memorial Day 2. Arlington Christian 3. Brentwood 4. Tiftarea 5. Robert Toombs 6. Edmund Burke 7. Bulloch 8. Windsor PLAYERS TO WATCH PLAYER

won 3 games by just 7 points to claim the GISA AA crown last season and the Matadors are primed to chase another championship this year. Shaad Wright leads a veteran group of explosive players as Memorial Day returns 50% of their starting lineup from a year ago. Former NFL and Penn State player Michael Timpson is the new coach at Arlington Christian. The Eagles return leading rusher Charod Strickland as well as Ethan Pepin and Ben Kissinger on the defensive side. Brentwood hopes senior quarterback Nick Burgamy can have a big season. Daniel Anderson is back to lead coach Bert Brown’s defense. Tiftarea returns quarterback Wes Carter who started as a freshman last season. The Panthers also feature running back Chandler Hammond. Robert Toombs will rely on the tandem of QB Will Johnson and running back Justin Brinson to lead the way. Edmund Burke should be solid in the trenches with returning seniors Boyd Lively and Tyler Roland. Bulloch will run the triple option that features running back Taylor Burke. Windsor lost most of their firepower and head coach Mike Smallwood enters the new season with a lot of new faces and not much experience.

2008 PLAYOFF BRACKET

Memorial Day

POSITION

SCHOOL

Shaad Wright

RB

Memorial Day

Nile Knapp

RB

Sherwood

Will Johnson

QB

R. Toombs

Charod Strickland

RB

Arlington Chr.

Nick Burgamy

QB

Brentwood

Piedmont

7 Bulloch

Bulloch

6

10 Flint River 20

Flint River 33 Flint River 27 Windsor

20

Tiftarea

31

Arlington

13

Memorial Day Tiftarea

11 Memorial D. 24

Memorial D. 14 OT Memorial D. 13

Brentwood

13


WINDSOR 2008 WRAP: The Knights were hoping to duplicate their sensational 2007 season (in which they won 12 games) but their playoff run towards a championship ended in Woodbury with a 33-20 loss to Flint River in the state playoffs. Windsor finished the season 8-4 and lost many players to graduation.

DEFENSE: The defensive front will see many of the same players from the offensive side of the ball. Taylor Everidge, Travis Young, Blake Layfield, Parker Henderson, and Dalton McEldowney will man the defensive front. The linebackers will be led by returning starter Cole Freeman who will join Lance Stokes and Caled Shipp. The secondary will need to grow up fast for the Knights to be successful. Bobby Shepard, Delenn Farmer, and Jonathan Terry are all newcomers. Nonetheless, coach Smallwood likes the potential of his young players. “If we can avoid the injury bug and mature, we have a chance to go deep into the playoffs,” he said.

OFFENSE: Head Coach Mike Smallwood enters his fourth season at the Windsor helm with a very young and inexperienced team. The Knights are so young, expect a freshman to start at quarterback. Kaleb Fuller has “mastered” the offense according to his coach and the young signal-caller certainly has it in his genes. His older brother Seth just completed his ca- SPECIAL TEAMS: Caleb Shipp and reer as a three-year starter for Wind- Parker Henderson will handle the kicksor. The Knights will miss the talents ing and punting duties replacing the of all-state running back Kent Gibson departed Jordan Peacock. Bobby Shepawho has moved on to LaGrange Col- rd and Shipp lead the return game. lege. Junior Lance Stokes will COACH SMALLWOOD SAYS: lineup in the backfield along “Our line is dominated by upperclassmen. with another pair of freshWe will need them to carry our younger skill men: Bobby Shepard and Caposition players early in the season.” leb Shipp. The receiving corps is also young. Jonathan Terry and Delenn Farmer appear to be the front-runners for those spots. WE THINK: The Knights have enThe offensive line will have plenty of joyed a successful run the past couexperience for Smallwood to depend ple of years, but for that success to on. Cole Freeman and Blake Layfield continue Coach Smallwood will need are solid retuning players. Senior Tra- his younger players to really step up. vis Young, will join Chuck Brown and The schedule is tough with the opener Taylor Everidge up-front. Senior Park- at Flint River and a road matchup at er Henderson start at tight end. Tattnall. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ Flint River

S.4

@ Pinecrest

S.11

Colonial Hills

S.18

Terrell

S.25

@ Tattnall

O.2

@ Sherwood Christian

O.9

@ SW Georgia

O.16

Valwood

O.23 O.30

Tiftarea @ Westminster Christian

2008 RESULTS

Flint River Pinecrest @ Colonial Hills @ Terrell Tattnall Sherwood Christian SW Georgia @ Valwood @ Tiftarea CFCA Edmund Burke @ Flint River

W I N D S O R

W W W L L W W W L W W L

BY THE NUMBERS

20-14 34-14 49-0 39-41 7-34 42-13 33-20 22-7 6-21 53-8 53-14 20-33

30

The record for most career wins as the Windsor Head Coach is held by John Abott who had 30 wins from 19741979. Current head man Mike Smallwood need five victories to break that mark.

photo courtesy: Lee McDavid

KNIGHTS

Parker Henderson

KNIGHTS FILE

HEAD COACH

Mike Smallwood (4th year: 26-11-0)

COACHING STAFF Ricky Worsham, Jimmy Watts, Dwayne Fuller, Will Prestridge

2008 RECORD 8-4-0

LAST 3 YEARS 26-11-0

LAST 5 YEARS 31-29-1

STADIUM Knight Field

REGION GISA 3-AA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS OL OL DL DB DE OL OL

Cole Freeman (SR.) Blake Layfield (JR.) Taylor Everidge (SR.) Lance Stokes (JR.) Parker Henderson (SR.) Brad Collins (SO.) Travis Young (SR.)

OL WR QB RB RB DL

Michael Nottingham (JR.) Blake Carmichael (SR.) Kaleb Fuller (FR.) Bobby Shepard (FR.) Caleb Shipp (FR.) Peyton Kell (FR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE RB Kent Gibson, QB Seth Fuller, LB Thomas Weekley, DE Jordan Peacock, OL Jake Worsham, LB Colby Gilpin

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

K N I G H T S Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

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BRENTWOOD

B

2008 WRAP: The 2008 season was a good one for Head Coach Bert Brown and his band of War Eagles. Brentwood went 8-4 with two of those losses coming by one point including a gutwrenching one point loss to Memorial Day in the second round of the state playoffs. The War Eagles, led by nine talented seniors, lit up the scoreboard on numerous occasions scoring forty or more points five times during the year.

DEFENSE: Depth could be a problem for the War Eagles on defense but the starters are good including seniors Heath Boyd, Daniel Anderson and Austin Rhodes along the defensive line. Eli Rowland, John Allen Rowland and Evan Wiggins anchor the linebacking corps. Wiggins is a big-time player. Nick Burgamy, Tucker Cobb, Damon Harris, Rex Wallace and sophomore Andy Bonifay will roam the secondary. Bonifay will also see action at quarterback. “Our defense must grow and mature especially early in the season,” says Brown.

OFFENSE: The War Eagles must replace several key players including running backs A. J. Pryor and Dartavious Brown but Coach Brown is fortu- SPECIAL TEAMS: Damon Harris will nate to bring back three year starter handle the punting duties and should Nick Burgamy to run his Wing T/Op- also provide value as a return man. tion offense. Evan Wiggins figures to Harris Joley is a sophomore, straighthandle most of the ball carrying du- on style kicker who Brown says usuties but Brown is extremely high on ally gets the job done. sophomore Damon Harris and thinks Harris has a chance to be a playmaker. Burgamy will have the luxury COACH BROWN SAYS: of throwing to a pair of se“We need to be a more ball control type team nior receivers in Tucker Cobb on offense. Last year we only had one offenand Rex Wallace. Brown says sive drive that lasted more than 10 plays.” both possess good hands which has him feeling more comfortable about throwing the ball this season. Three year starter WE THINK: Brentwood lost several Daniel Anderson will anchor the offen- players but they do return a very talsive line from his center position. He’ll ented and experienced quarterback be joined up front by fellow seniors plus there are enough athletes to fill Austin Rhodes and Colby Yates along in around him. Bert Brown does want with sophomore Jonathan Brantley the offense to control the ball more and John Allen Rowland. this season to allow his defensive players to grow into their roles. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ John Hancock

S.4

Trinity

S.11

John Milledge

S.18

@ Westfield

S.25

Edmund Burke

O.2

Westminster

O.9

@ Piedmont

O.16

Strong Rock

O.23 O.30

@ Loganville @ Nathanael Greene

2008 RESULTS

John Hancock @ Trinity @ John Milledge Westfield @ Edmund Burke @ Westminster Piedmont @ Strong Rock Loganville Nathanael Greene Heritage @ Memorial Day

B R E N T W O O D

72

W W L L W W W W W L W L

BY THE NUMBERS

28-16 21-0 0-10 7-40 28-0 48-15 34-27 35-17 48-22 19-20 49-14 13-14

9

With their 2008 GISA Region 1AA championship, the War Eagles have now claimed the region championship 9 times.

Heath Boyd

WA R E A G L E S F I L E

HEAD COACH

Bert Brown (10th year: 68-42-2)

COACHING STAFF Brannon Bonifay, Lee Lord

2008 RECORD 8-4-0

LAST 3 YEARS 16-16-1

LAST 5 YEARS 32-26-1

STADIUM Eagle Field

REGION GISA 1-AA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB DB FB RB WR WR K

Nick Burgamy (SR.) Andy Bonifay (SO.) Evan Wiggins (JR.) Damon Harris (SO.) Rex Wallace (SR.) Tucker Cobb (SO.) Harris Joley (SO.)

RB A.J. Pryor, WR Jonathan Shurling, RB Dartavious Brown, TE Will Avant, OL Ches Cullens, DL Lee Armour

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS

E A G L E S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

Daniel Anderson (SR.) Jonathan Brantley (SO.) Austin Rhodes (SR.) Colby Yates (SR.) Heath Boyd (SR.) Eli Rowland (JR.) John Allen Rowland (SO.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE

PLAYOFF TEAM W A R

C OL OL OL DL LB LB

photo courtesy: Andy Crabb

WAR EAGLES


CLASS A FORECASTED FINISH

photo courtesy: PeachSports.com

1. Terrell 2. Thomas Jefferson 3. Bethesda Day 4. Briarwood 5. Westwood 6. Covenant 7. David Emanuel 8. John Hancock PLAYERS TO WATCH PLAYER

son rolling to a 61 point performance in their state title win over Thomas Jefferson. With the talented trio of Cole Byrd, Colby Blackburn, and J.B. Jones returning expect the Eagles to be the team to beat in Class A. Thomas Jefferson played second fiddle last season to Terrell and the Jaguars may find themselves in that same role this year. There is some experience up-front with Hank Gilmore and Michael Watkins returning plus Taylor Barrentine is a load at fullback. Bethesda Day will rely on their quick quarterback D’Tavias Cooper to run the offense. Desmond Griffieth, an all-state performer is back to lead the defense. Briarwood returns a proven running back in Matthew McElveen. Westwood brings back some experience and quarterback Mason Worsham, who started as a freshman last season, has a year of seasoning under his belt. Shane Self takes over the coaching duties at Covenant and he has a talented duo of QB Andretti Loyd and RB Gunnar Mendiola returning for the Rams. David Emanuel lost their top two backs to graduation while John Hancock will be searching for a new quarterback to replace Devin Rachels.

2008 PLAYOFF BRACKET

Terrell was an offensive juggernaut last sea-

POSITION

SCHOOL

Cole Byrd

RB

Terrell

Taylor Barrentine

FB

T. Jefferson

Gunnar Mendiola

RB

Covenant

Mitch Bernier

OL

Westwood

Desmond Griffieth

DL

Bethesda Day

T. Jefferson 42 T. Jefferson 49 Fullington

0 T. Jefferson 26

R-Southern 27 R-Southern 13 Briarwood

0

Terrell Terrell

49 Terrell

49

Bethesda Day 14

Terrell Monroe

6

Westwood

29

Westwood 13

61


COVENANT 2008 WRAP: The Rams won three of their first four games but then the wheels came off and the competition got tougher. Covenant dropped their final 6 games to finish the year at 37. Head Coach Todd Whetsel resigned leaving Shane Self to take the reins in 2009.

DEFENSE: As is usually the case at this level, many offensive players will turnaround and play defense as well. The Rams will play a base 3-5 defense with Seth Wheeler, Andrew Bankson, Kasey Hall, Harrison Botenheimer, Cory Silvernail, and Carson Durham all seeing action on the D-line. Joel Walters should head the linebacking crew that will also feature Hunter Bowker, Sam Ashmore, Gunnar Mendiola, Brian Murphy, and Josh Cooper. In the secondary, Michael Battle is the top returnee along with Andretti Loyd, and Jesse Wheeler.

OFFENSE: The Rams did not graduate anyone last season and this will be the first senior class to play football at Covenant. Shane Self was “shocked” when Head Coach Todd Whetsel resigned in June. Self was an assistant last season and he’s “excited about the huge task at hand.” One thing the SPECIAL TEAMS: Place-kicker Renew coach should be excited about: ece Freel suffered an off-the-field inhe’s got some good players coming jury and will miss this season. Jesse back. All-state running back Gun- Wheeler, Zach Lindsey and Joel Walnar Mendiola was the Rams leading ters will compete for both the kicking rusher last season and he’s back for and punting honors. Battle and Menhis senior season. Joining him will be diola are the top return threats. sophomore newcomer Joel Walters and Freshman Zach Lindsey. COACH SELF SAYS: Quarterback Andretti Loyd “We have to develop a winning attitude and also returns. Loyd is very not just be content to be ‘in the ballgame’. athletic and he throws the We need to put people away when we can.” ball well. He’ll have Michael Battle and Hunter Bowker back at receiver. Sophomore Jesse Wheeler will also see action at WE THINK: Covenant has a chance receiver. Up-front senior Seth Wheeler to improve upon their 3 wins of a year will start at center. The rest of the line ago. With a talented nucleus returnwill consist of Josh Cooper, Kasey Hall, ing offensively. The Rams should be Harrison Botenheimer, and Andrew able to put some points on the board, Bankson who Self calls “extremely in- but can they defend better than a year telligent.” Sam Ashmore will line up at ago? If they do, a playoff run is postight end. sible. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ Arlington Christian

S.3

Fullington

S.11

@ Young Americans

S.18

Westwood

S.25

David Emanuel

O.2

@ Briarwood

O.16

@ Randolph-Southern

O.23

Bethesda Day

O.30

John Hancock

2008 RESULTS

Arlington Christian @ Fullington Young Americans @ Crisp @ David Emanuel Briarwood Monroe @ Bethesda Day @ John Hancock T. Jefferson

L W W W L L L L L L

BY THE NUMBERS

14-43 24-18 43-14 41-18 26-36 23-53 0-28 20-28 6-46 15-51

3

The Rams won 3 of their first 4 games last season and stood 3-1 before dropping their last 6 games to finish their inaugural campaign 3-7.

Andretti Loyd

RAMS FILE

HEAD COACH

Shane Self (1st year)

COACHING STAFF Chris McBride

2008 RECORD 3-7-0

LAST 3 YEARS N/A

LAST 5 YEARS N/A

STADIUM Ed Defore

REGION GISA 1-A

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS RB QB LB TE OL OL OL OL

Gunnar Mendiola (SR.) Andretti Loyd (JR.) Andrew Bankson (SR.) Sam Ashmore (SR.) Seth Wheeler (SR.) Josh Cooper (JR.) Jonathan Botenheimer (SR.) Harrison Botenheimer (SR.)

74

R A M S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

LB OL DB WR OL OL DL LB

Joel Walters (SO.) Kasey Hall (SO.) Michael Battle (JR.) Jesse Wheeler (SO.) Brian Murphy (SO.) Cory Silvernail (JR.) Carson Durham (JR.) Hunter Bowker (JR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE DE Micah Moore

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

C O V E N A N T

photo courtesy: Tracy Wheeler

RAMS


FULLINGTON 2008 WRAP: The Trojans fought hard in 2008 but the results didn’t necessarily show up in the win-loss column. Ken Fowler’s crew started the regular season with a win over Griffin Christian and they ended the regular season with a win over Crisp Academy but in between were sandwiched eight losses. The team did get into the playoffs were they were beaten in the opening round by a very talented Thomas Jefferson team.

DEFENSE: The defense will have to improve for the Trojans to be competitive. Last season Fullington allowed forty or more points five times. This season, Coach Fowler’s defense will once again be led by 2008 All-State performer Joseph Lamberth. At 6’1” 245 Lamberth has the size and quickness to cause a lot of trouble in the opposing team’s backfield. Senior Jordan Peavy will also help out on the defensive front while sophomore Brandon Bailey will anchor the linebacking corps.

OFFENSE: Ken Fowler will run the Multiple Spread offense this season and it will feature the talents of junior SPECIAL TEAMS: Quarterback David quarterback David Faircloth. Faircloth Faircloth will handle the punting and started every game but two in 2008 place-kicking chores so keeping him and he should be even better this healthy is a must for the Trojans. season. Faircloth will spend a good Caleb Frenchko and Caleb Moore will deal of time getting the ball in the be pressed into return duties. hands of senior running back Caleb Frenchko who Fowler calls “the best athlete on the team.” Dylan Gay who missed most of 2008 with a COACH FOWLER SAYS: broken ankle will also carry “I’m very excited about this season. We have the ball for the Trojans. great size up front and I’m confident in our Junior Caleb Malone will be starters but they must stay healthy. We have Faircloth’s main target when no depth at our skill positions.” Fullington decides to throw. The offensive line will feature plenty of size led by tackles Zach WE THINK: The Trojans only lost McNeese and Stephen Simmons and three seniors off last year’s team so guards Dustin McClendon and Dylan this group should know what it takes Moak. All four stand at least six feet to win. They also have tremendous tall and weigh over 220 pounds and size for a GISA Class A school. The should be able to open holes for pieces are there for Fullington to field Frenchko to run through. a good team provided they don’t lose one or two key parts to injuries. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

Griffin Christian

S.3

@ Covenant

S.11

David Emanuel

S.25

@ Heritage

O.2

@ Valwood

O.9

Dawson Street

O.16

@ Westwood

O.23

Terrell

0.30

@ Randolph Southern

2008 RESULTS

@ Griffin Christian Covenant @ David Emanuel Heritage Valwood @ Dawson Street Westwood @ Terrell Randolph Southern @ Crisp @ Thomas Jefferson

W L L L L L L L L W L

BY THE NUMBERS

26-8 18-24 0-42 8-28 0-13 26-32 7-41 0-41 14-40 28-6 0-42

10

The 1995 Fullington team won 10 games, most in school history. The Trojans finished the season with a 10-2 record after a state quarterfinal loss to Trinity.

photo courtesy: Amy Thompson

TROJANS

Caleb Frenchko

TROJANS FILE

HEAD COACH

Ken Fowler (3rd year: 3-18-0)

COACHING STAFF John Brady, John Warlick, Van Bailey

2008 RECORD 2-9-0

LAST 3 YEARS 11-21-0

LAST 5 YEARS 20-35-0

STADIUM Billy Giles Field

REGION GISA 2-A

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB WR OL OL

David Faircloth (JR.) Caleb Frenchko (SR.) Caleb Malone (JR.) Dustin McLendon (JR.) Dylan Moak (SR.)

OL OL DE DL LB

Zach McNeese (SR.) Stephen Simmons (JR.) Joseph Lamberth (JR.) Jordan Peavy (SR.) Brandon Bailey (SO.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE RB Radley Jones, WR Michael Mixon, OL Riley Moore

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

F U L L I N G T O N

T R O J A N S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

75


An Empty Feeling

Monroe Academy Closes It’s Doors

T

HE economic crunch finally took it’s toll on Monroe Academy this year as the small private school in Forsyth was forced to close it’s doors. After 43 years of operation, the board reached their ultimate decision on July 20th. “We could not in good faith begin the school year without the assurance that we could complete it,” school leaders said in a statement sent to parents and teachers. Monroe Academy became a SEAIS heavyweight in the early ‘70’s. Year-in and year out the school held it’s own against the other schools in the association. Monroe opened in 1966 and began playing competitive football in 1972. In 1973 and 1974, the Mustangs won the state football championship in the SEAIS’ top division. Edgar Hatcher was the coach at Monroe during those glory years. “I was real disappointed to hear about it (closing) and real sorry for the teachers and the students,” said Hatcher. “It was a great school and I enjoyed all of my years there. I think it’s a great loss to the middle Georgia community.” Hatcher’s 1974 team posted a 10-1 record, best in school history on their way to the title (more on page 12). Even though the team never won another state championship they were competitive until the end. Last year’s team posted a 7-4 record for Head Coach Dennard Scoggins.

76

GLORY DAYS Edgar Hatcher, Jeff Harper (rear) celebrate the 1974 SEAIS championship.

MUSTANGS THROUGH THE YEARS 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990

7-3-0 7-3-1 10-1-0 6-4-0 4-6-0 2-9-0 6-5-0 4-5-1 1-9-0 2-8-0 8-2-0 6-4-0 2-8-0 3-6-0 1-9-0 0-10-0 5-5-1 6-6-0 5-7-0

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008

3-9-0 5-5-0 4-6-0 2-9-0 1-10-0 1-9-0 7-3-1 6-4-0 2-7-0 1-10-0 1-10-0 5-6-0 3-8-0 8-3-1 4-8-0 3-6-0 3-7-0 7-4-0


78

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009


2008

SUPERLATIVES

DeAndre Smelter

TATTNALL Returned an interception 36 yards for a touchdown plus caught two td passes and rushed for another touchdown in a 40-0 win over FPD.

Adrian Alexander

SOUTHWEST Rushed for 243 yards as the Patriots upset crosstown rival Northeast 34-27.

Jerrico Ford

BALDWIN Rushed for 264 yards and 3 touchdowns in 29-19 playoff victory over Shaw.

Rashard Smith

DUBLIN Intercepted 5 passes for Dublin in the Irish 51-14 win over Dodge County.

Marquez Lemon

STRATFORD Rushed for 277 yards in Eagles 27-24 win over Deerfield-Windsor.

Trey Epperson

MONROE Rushed for 362 yards in a 83-52 win over David Emanuel.

NOMINATE A SUPERLATIVE To nominate a candidate for the 2009 Superlatives, please submit your nomination at www.bibbmedia.com/prep. Please thoroughly completely the submission form.

Zach Jones

FPD Tied school record with 12 catches against Westfield.

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

79


REGION 3-AAA FORECASTED FINISH 1. Baldwin 2. Washington County 3. Burke County 4. Thomson 5. West Laurens 6. Liberty County 7. Richmond Hill PLAYERS TO WATCH PLAYER

son and while the Braves lost some good players from that team, there are plenty left-over to take the reins. Quarterback Roshaun Milline is just a sophomore with loads of talent. A solid front should make the Braves hard to stop offensively. Washington County returns 15 starters and the Golden Hawks should be a real threat especially defensively. DB Markeist Warthen will also play quarterback and the ‘Hawks will be stout up-front. Burke will rely on quarterback Terrell Brigham who threw for over 1000 yards and rushed for over a thousand, but the Bears have an inexperienced line and return only 3 defensive starters. Thomson is probably not good enough to challenge for the region title, but the Bulldogs under veteran coach Luther Welsh are always ready to play. Running back Dontavis Brown should be a big part of the Bulldogs spread offense. Mark Pemberton takes over at West Laurens after a successful run in Tennessee. Johnny Smith returns for the Raiders who will likely change their entire offense. Julian Stokes is back at QB for Liberty County, coached by former Bleckley standout Kirk Warner. Richmond returns 12 starters including RB Zack Denny.

FINAL 2008 STANDINGS

Baldwin was the class of the region last sea-

POSITION

SCHOOL

Roshaun Milline

QB

Baldwin

Chartavious Danzy

OL

Washington Co.

Terrell Brigham

QB

Burke County

Johnny Smith

RB

W. Laurens

Dontavis Brown

RB

Thomson

REGION

OVERALL

1. Baldwin

6-0-0

12-1-0

2. Burke County

5-1-0

8-4-0

3. Washington Co. 4-2-0

8-3-0

4. Thomson

3-3-0

6-6-0

5. Liberty County

2-4-0

3-7-0

6. West Laurens

1-5-0

4-6-0

7. Richmond Hill

0-6-0

2-8-0


BALDWIN 2008 WRAP: The Braves put together a magical year winning 12 straight games and marching into the state quarterfinals. But in what Head Coach Jesse Hicks termed “the worst half of football we’ve played since I’ve been here,” the Braves dropped a 35-17 decision at home to Flowery Branch ending their championship dreams and their season at 12-1.

DEFENSE: While the offensive line is stout, the defensive front will be young and inexperienced. Kitray Solomon and Denarrious King will be counted on to lead that unit. The linebackers will have a huge hole to fill with the departure of Corrico Hawkins, who signed with Clemson. Junior Janiero Bonner will try and step in. The secondary will have a pair of seniors: Bennie Milline (Roshaun’s brother), and John Willis leading the way. The Braves should score a lot of points offensively, which may take some pressure off of this young defensive unit.

OFFENSE: Coach Hicks just beams when talking about his sophomore quarterback Roshaun Milline. Milline started last season as a freshman. According to his coach, “he can do it all. He doesn’t get rattled. There’s no limit SPECIAL TEAMS: The Braves will as to what he can do.” Milline can run debut a new kicker as Tyler Reaves as well as throw it and he’ll have a takes over for Steven Piro (who also nice supporting cast on the offensive did some punting last season). Branside. Javontae Edwards returns at one don Thomas is the lead return threat running back spot. He’ll be joined by looking to fill the shoes of last season’s Altovise Harris and Brandon Thomas return specialist Josh Finney. in the backfield. The receiving corps will be young and that has COACH HICKS SAYS: the coach a little concerned. “Our team will be well balanced. We have reD.J. Foston, and Hakeem turning starters on both sides of the ball that Harris, both seniors will likely should allow us to be in every ball game.” start the season at the wideout spots. Up front, Baldwin should be fierce. Galvin Myrick starts at center with WE THINK: The Braves may be unJadarius Dean and Antwan Grable at stoppable when they have the football, the guard positions. Ryan Adams and but they may need to score a lot of Linton Latimore are the tackles. Says points to offset their youthful defense. Hicks, “we will be as good as our of- Look for the Braves to challenge for fensive line who we feel will be great.” another region title and make yet anCompleting the Braves front will be ju- other run deep into the AAA playoffs. nior tight end Craig Washington. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ Glenn Hills

S.5

Troup

S.11

Peach County

S.18

@ Carver

S.25

West Laurens

O.2

@ Burke County

O.16

Richmond Hill

O.23

@ Liberty County

O.30 N.6

Washington County @ Thomson

2008 RESULTS

Glenn Hills @ Troup @ Peach County Carver @ West Laurens Burke County @ Richmond Hill Liberty County @ Washington County Thomson Eagle’s Landing Shaw Flowery Branch B A L D W I N

W W W W W W W W W W W W L

BY THE NUMBERS

21-0 9-7 13-3 22-0 34-0 17-7 38-0 35-0 14-12 21-7 28-3 29-19 17-35

12

The Braves won their first 12 games of the season last year making that the longest winning streak in school history. The 12 wins was also the most ever by a Baldwin team.

photo courtesy: Joey WIlson

B R AV E S

Kitray Solomon

B R AV E S F I L E

HEAD COACH

Jesse Hicks (8th year: 61-21-0)

COACHING STAFF Ronnie Baker, Robert Cummings, Joe Sample, Clay McClendon, Rico Gibson, Charles Browder

2008 RECORD 12-1-0

LAST 3 YEARS 30-5-0

LAST 5 YEARS 46-15-0

STADIUM Braves Stadium

REGION 3-AAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB WR WR OL OL OL RB

Roshaun Milline (SO.) Javontae Edwards (SR.) D.J. Foston (SR.) Haleem Hawkins (SR.) Linton Latimore (JR.) Jadarius Dean (SR.) Ryan Adams (JR.) Altovise Harris (JR.)

OL DE DE DL DB DB LB TE

Galvin Myrick (SR.) Kitray Solomon (JR.) Denarrious King (SR.) Greg Curey (SR.) John Willis (SR.) Bennie Milline (SR.) Janiero Bonner (JR.) Craig Washington (JR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE LB Corico Hawkins, SS Courtney Ingram, OL Darius Nelson, RB Jerrico Ford

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

B R A V E S Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

81


WASHINGTON CO. 2008 WRAP: The Golden Hawks enjoyed a solid season in 2008 after a rough 2007. They started strong winning their first seven games behind a high-scoring offense and very stingy defense but then the WACO machine suddenly veered off the tracks as the team lost three of its final four games including a disappointing 21-7 defeat to Woodward Academy in the opening round of the state playoffs.

DEFENSE: The Golden Hawks pitched four shutouts last season and allowed only 99 points the entire season. There is plenty of talent back led by junior defensive end Wesley Evans. Ingram says Evans could be the team’s best player. He’ll get help on the line from Arzavier Renfroe. The ‘Hawks will miss hard-hitting linebacker Brandon Watts who has moved on to Georgia Tech but senior Antonio Ingram returns at one LB spot with the very talented Terryhon Wright joining him. Three starters are back in the secondary including Markesit Warthen, Caddarius Warthen and Quinton Dixon.

OFFENSE: WACO put 40 or more points on the scoreboard six times in 2008 and the potential is there for this offense to be just as explosive. Three year starter Markeist Warthen returns at quarterback to guide head SPECIAL TEAMS: The Golden Hawks coach Joel Ingram’s I-formation of- lost talented kicker Ethan Jackson to fense. Warthen will spend a lot of time graduation. His replacement is sophputting the ball in the hands of senior omore C.J. Joiner. Bradley Smith will Montravious Gladden. Gladden rushed handle the punting chores. Quinton for over nine hundred yards as a ju- Dixon is a dangerous return man. nior in 2008. He should fill the shoes left behind by the departure COACH INGRAM SAYS: of Keith Swint who gained “I’m excited about this group. They’re fun to over 1400 yards and scored coach and they’re good kids and they believe 22 touchdowns last season. in what we’re tryin’ to do..” Three year starter Jrametrias Kirksey figures to get the ball thrown to him at his tight end spot while Terryhon Wright WE THINK: The talent is there on leads the wide receiver corps. Coach both sides of the ball to make this a Ingram feels his offensive line will be a banner year for Coach Joel Ingram’s bright spot with four starters returning crew. The Golden Hawks play six home including All-Region performer Charta- games at the House of Pain but their vious Danzy, juniors Damian Johnson toughest test will come on October 30 and Chris Griner and seniors Jeremy when they travel to Milledgeville to Tillman and Dylan Lindsey. play the Baldwin Braves. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ Cross Creek

S.4

Greene County

S.11

Morgan County

S.17

@ Troup

S.25

@ Liberty County

O.9

Thomson

O.16

@ West Laurens

O.23

Burke County

O.30 N.6

@ Baldwin Richmond Hill

2008 RESULTS

Cross Creek @ Greene County @ Morgan County Troup Liberty County @ Thomson West Laurens @ Burke County Baldwin @ Richmond Hill @ Woodward Academy

W A S H I N G T O N

82

W W W W W W W L L W L

BY THE NUMBERS

56-6 48-6 45-0 3-0 42-0 20-0 51-10 24-28 12-14 71-14 7-21

50

Washington County has been at the top of the state rankings 50 times in their history. The Golden Hawks were last ranked #1 in 2005. Last season, WACO reached #4 after their 7-0 start.

Darius Stephens

H AW K S F I L E

HEAD COACH

Joel Ingram (4th year: 23-12-0)

COACHING STAFF Brad Wallace, Ronald Bonner, Marty Claxton, Jay English, Darryl Gilbert, Marlo East, Tommy Howell, Greg Cooper

2008 RECORD 8-3-0

LAST 3 YEARS 23-12-0

LAST 5 YEARS 42-19-0

STADIUM House Of Pain

REGION 3-AAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB RB FB WR TE OL OL

Markeist Warthen (SR.) Montravious Gladden (SR.) Savon Washington (SO.) Gerad Robinson (SO.) Terryhon Wright (JR.) Jrametries Kirksey (JR.) Jeremy Tillman (SR.) Dylan Lindsey (SR.)

H A W K S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

OL OL OL DE DL LB DB DB

Chris Griner (JR.) Chartavious Danzy (JR.) Damian Johnson (JR.) Wesley Evans (JR.) Arzavier Renfroe (SR.) Antonio Ingram (SR.) Caddarius Warthen (SR.) Quinton Dixon (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE LB Brandon Watts, RB Keith Swint, DL Wayne Johnson, DL Cody Robinson, K Ethan Jackson

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

C O U N T Y

photo courtesy: Joey WIlson

GOLDEN HAWKS


WEST LAURENS 2008 WRAP: The Raiders sprinted out of the gate in 2008 winning three of the first four games but they failed to sustain that momentum and ended up losing five of their final six to finish with a 4-6 mark and a spot outside the playoff picture. The defense was the main culprit allowing the opposition to score 21 or more points in eight different games. Head coach John Pate was let go after the season.

DEFENSE: Defense was not the name of the game for the Raiders in 2008. The team gave up points in bunches (133 points in the final three games) and that ultimately spelled doom for the West Laurens season. Despite last year’s abysmal numbers, Pemberton believes there is reason for optimism. Senior Jeremy Pauldo will provide an imposing presence on the inside in Defensive Coordinator Kevin Smith’s 3-4 alignment. Johnny Smith is an excellent linebacker and Rodney O’Neal, Trell Showers and Corey Blash provide a good nucleus in the secondary.

OFFENSE: Head coach Mark Pemberton shocked many by leaving his successful program at Catholic High School in Knoxville, Tennessee to take the West Laurens job. Pemberton is counting SPECIAL TEAMS: Coach Pemberton on senior Ross Miles to run his wing- believes sophomore Dylan Smith can bone offense with a lot of help from handle the kicking duties. The search his friends. Friends like the multi- for a punter continues with senior talented junior Rodney O’Neal. O’Neal Chase Glenn the front-runner for that could line up at several different spots position. The return game features including running back and wing back. O’Neal, Showers, and Blash who all Fullback Johnny Smith is another have good speed. excellent runner. Smith rushed for over nine hundred yards as COACH PEMBERTON SAYS: “There’s some talent here. All the ingredia junior. Senior Trell Showers ents are there for a successful program and will be the go to guy when the we think we’ll be very competitive.” Raiders throw the ball. Chase Glenn and Vacarro Jones will also figure in the receiver mix as will tight ends Kyle Smith and Bryan WE THINK: Pemberton says he did Butler, who will both see playing time. his homework before taking the West Senior Drew Morris will anchor the Laurens and was impressed with the offensive line. The line should have number of athletes the team had. The some experience with fellow seniors Raiders also move into a brand new Jon Henderson, and David Harrison, school and football stadium this fall plus juniors Antonio Green, and D.J. providing a point of pride for the team Corbin. and the entire community. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ South Effingham

S.4

@ Howard

S.11

Haralson County

S.18

Telfair County

S.25

@ Baldwin

O.2

Richmond Hill

O.9

@ Liberty County

O.16

Washington County

O.23 N.6

@ Thomson Burke County W E S T

2008 RESULTS

South Effingham Howard @ Haralson County @ Telfair County Baldwin @ Richmond Hill Liberty County @ Washington County Thomson @ Burke County

L W W W L W L L L L

BY THE NUMBERS

0-21 47-7 24-21 37-27 0-34 40-14 26-27 10-51 3-42 15-40

9

New Raider Head Caoch Mark Pemberton lost only 9 games over the past 7 seasons at Catholic High School in Knoxville, Tennessee.

photo courtesy: Joey WIlson

RAIDERS

Johnny Smith

RAIDERS FILE

HEAD COACH

Mark Pemberton (1st year) Overall (8th year: 78-9-0)

COACHING STAFF Kevin Smith, Cedric Lewis, Mike Brown, Jeff Clayton, Rod Waites, Duane Gibson, Casey Sirmons

2008 RECORD 4-6-0

LAST 3 YEARS 14-16-0

LAST 5 YEARS 23-28-0

STADIUM Raider

REGION 3-AAA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB RB WR WR WR TE TE

Ross Miles (SR.) Rodney O’Neal (JR.) Johnny Smith (SR.) Trell Showers (SR.) Chase Glenn (SR.) Vacarro Jones (JR.) Kyle Smith (JR.) Bryan Butler (JR.)

OL OL OL OL OL DL DB K

Drew Morris (SR.) Jon Henderson (SR.) C.J. Corbin (JR.) Antonio Green (JR.) David Harrison (SR.) Jeremy Pauldo (SR.) Corey Blash (JR.) Dylan Smith (SO.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE RB Hakeem Brady, LB A.J. Wright, DL Demario White, DE Thor Pate, OL Mo Stanley

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

L A U R E N S

R A I D E R S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

83


photo courtesy: Georgia Southern Media Relations

LIKE FATHER, LIKE SON

THE HATCHER FACTOR Edgar and son Chris have each taken the same career path, marching down the sidelines to success BY JIM HARDIN CHRIS HATCHER didn’t plan to become a coach. He never had a choice. Some people are destined for their “chosen” occupation. The Georgia Southern Head Coach and Macon native says coaching and sports were part of his life from birth. “Growing up the son of a coach I just never felt like I wanted to do anything else. It was just part of who I was from day one,” says Hatcher. Chris grew up the son of long-time Central Georgia coaching fixture Edgar Hatcher, and his preparation for his future career began very early. “He was always around sports. He really didn’t have a choice. But he loved it,” says the elder Hatcher. But being successful is one thing. Having the type of success Chris has had in an ultra-competitive profession at such a young age is something very different. But father knew long ago that son would be

84

successful at whatever career he chose. “Chris is smart and he is determined. He is the type of guy who would have been successful in whatever career he chose.” By now, most Central Georgians know the Chris Hatcher story. He grew up in Macon and was a standout in basketball, baseball, and football at Mt. De Sales. A two-time All-American, he started 41 consecutive games as quarterback at Valdosta State and won the Harlon Hill Trophy (Division II’s equivalent to the Heisman Trophy) as the top player in Division II college football as a senior. His experience and intelligence as a signalcaller for the Blazers catapulted him into the coaching ranks. He moved quickly up the coaching ladder, landing offensive assistant jobs at Central Florida and then Kentucky where he tutored future Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

NFL quarterbacks Daunte Culpepper and Tim Couch respectively. He made his way back to Valdosta State, and as head coach in 2004, led his alma mater to a Division II National Championship. In 2007, he became head coach at Georgia Southern and it became quickly evident that Hatcher was the man who would lead the Eagles back to national prominence. Edgar is obviously proud of Chris and his accomplishments, and the two have a special relationship.The mutual admiration is obvious when they talk about each other. Although Chris has been directly influenced by some of the biggest coaching names in college football, he is quick to point out that his father had the most significant influence in his life. “There is no question that my dad has


LIKE FATHER, LIKE SON had the most profound influence on me both personally and professionally.” But many high school football fans might not realize the profound impact that the elder Hatcher has had on countless young people during his 40 year career

Georgia’s National Championship team in 1980. Milt Cuyler, a standout baseball and football player for Hatcher at Southwest in the mid-eighties, originally signed to play football with Florida State but went on to a career in major league baseball. And the list goes, on and on.

Edgar, like Chris, seemed destined to become a coach at an early age. As a youngster growing up in Macon, Edgar, like Chris, was a three-sport standout at Mt. De Sales. He signed to play baseball with Florida State but an injury halted his dreams of playing the big leagues. He

HATCHER FAMILY ALBUM: FROM LEFT TOP: Chris at Valdosta State, Edgar watches his Monroe Mustangs, Father and son celebrate as Chris wins Harlon Hill Trophy. Edgar posted 60 career wins as head coach at Southwest. BOTTOM LEFT TO RIGHT: Chris leads Georgia Southern onto the field, Hatcher huddle: Chris and Edgar with young Ty.

as an educator. His 22 years as a head coach included 2 state titles at Monroe Academy in Forsyth. And he coached some of the best athletes that middle Georgia has ever produced. Hatcher’s star player during his stint at Monroe Academy was Jeff Harper, who went on to be a starter on The University of

But the thing Hatcher is most proud of is the relationships that he has built over the years with his players who have come from all walks of life. He still talks regularly to many of his former players. Some of whom no longer live locally and played for him over 30 years ago.

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

came back to Macon and began his career as an assistant under legendary Coach Billy Henderson at the old Willingham High School. Hatcher says Henderson influenced him greatly. During his long career, Hatcher has served as a coach in some capacity for nearly every sport offered by the Bibb County school

85


LIKE FATHER, LIKE SON system. He has also been an athletic director. He was the head coach at Northeast (19771979) and at Southwest from (1980-1993). He still serves the system as a middle school coach. Ironically, Chris did not play for his father as a prep player. Although Edgar is still serious about his middle school coaching duties, he has a little more free time than he did in his days as a head coach. He is able to attend Georgia Southern games, and he is excited about the upcoming season and optimistic about the future of the Southern program with Chris at the helm. However, his trips to Statesboro may involve other motives. It allows him to spend time with his grandchildren, Ty and Talley. While he is proud of Chris’ coaching accomplishments, Edgar seems equally proud of the way Chris performs his own fatherly duties. Ty often accompanies his dad to work, and like his dad, seems to savor the fringe benefits that come along with being the coach’s son. Family is a big deal to the Hatchers. Edgar is also very proud of his two daughters Wendy and Katie. Wendy is a teacher in Athens and Katie is currently pursuing her master’s degree. Chris’ cousin Keith Hatcher is an assistant at Southern and several other family members are involved in education and coaching. Overall, Edgar seems very satisfied with his life, and much of that satisfaction seems to stem from his relationships with his family and the legions of friends he has made in throughout his long career. Former Hatcher pupil Jeff Harper may have summed it up best. “I love Edgar Hatcher.” Many more of his former players feel the same way about their former coach. They will never forget the leadership and friendship he has given them. The help and advice given by their former coach has remained with them a lifetime. photo courtesy: Georgia Southern Media Relations

What is the best advice father has given son? “When I was playing sports as a kid, he was always concerned that I was having a good time and encouraged me to have fun. I think he knew the key to being successful in life is enjoying what you do.” Does he still give his son advice? “Only if I ask for it,” laughs Chris. The Hatchers are a definitely a duo that Macon and middle Georgia are proud to claim.

HATCH ATTACK

Chris is 13-9 in two seasons at Georgia Southern.


REGION 5-AA FORECASTED FINISH

photo courtesy: Dave Bowker

1. Callaway 2. Heard County 3. Pike County 4. Crawford County 5. Macon County 6. Manchester 7. Jordan 8. Lamar County 9. Spencer PLAYERS TO WATCH PLAYER

the Cavaliers return seven offensive starters including RB Quan Bray (who may move to quarterback) and WR Quantavious Leslie. The offensive line is experienced and the defense features linebacker Randy Bailey. Heard County could make a run at the region title. The Braves feature QB Santez Emory, RB Jeremiah Hill and WR Ja′Quay Williams and could have as much speed as any team in the region. Pike County also returns a talented offensive group led by quarterback Kody Adams, but the Pirates will have to be totally rebuilt up-front. Crawford County hopes to challenge for a playoff berth. Head Coach Tony Byram will key on his defense led by linebacker Jerrod Barner and a pair of safeties: Artavious Preston and Cordias Howard. In Montezuma, Macon County enters their second season under Henry Leslie. The Bulldogs have senior QB Iquan Deed to lead the offense while defensively nine starters are back led by Brantley Pate. Manchester has speedy Greg Gates in the backfield but he’ll need some help from a very inexperienced offensive line. David Nurnberg is the new coach at Jordan and he will likely institute the spread offense.

FINAL 2008 STANDINGS

Callaway is once again the team to beat as

POSITION

SCHOOL

Quantavious Leslie WR

Callaway

Greg Gates

RB

Manchester

Jerrod Barner

LB

Crawford Co.

Iquan Deed

QB

Macon County

Santez Emory

QB

Heard County

REGION

OVERALL

1. Callaway

8-0-0

10-2-0

2. Pike County

7-1-0

9-2-0

3. Heard County

5-3-0

6-5-0

4. Macon County

5-3-0

5-6-0

5. Manchester

4-4-0

5-5-0

6. Crawford County 3-5-0

4-6-0

7. Spencer

2-6-0

3-7-0

8. Jordan

1-7-0

2-8-0

9. Lamar County

1-7-0

1-9-0


MACON CO. 2008 WRAP: The 2008 season was full of nail-biting finishes for Macon Conty as three of the Bulldogs 10 regular season games were decided by one point. The Bulldogs won two of those three beating Crawford County and Manchester. They also gained steam as the season went along winning four of their final five regular season games to qualify for the playoffs where they lost to Lovett in the opening round.

DEFENSE: The Bulldogs always play tough defense and that is not about to change under Coach Lester. Nine starters return for the “D” and that spells bad news for opponents. Jarvis Turner and Trevotis Tooks are physical players inside. Linebackers Maurice Nelson and Colby McKenzie will be joined by senior Brian Mitchell who missed almost all of last season after blowing out his ACL in the team’s opening game against Peach County. Jalaan Reding and Omar McDonald will join forces with Brantley Pate and Corbin Brown to form a very formidable secondary unit. Pate was first team all-region and is one of the top strong safeties in Class AA.

OFFENSE: Veteran Iquan Deed is back to run the Bulldogs spread offense. He’s a three-year starter and he really matured in the position as last season progressed. He should be even better in 2009. Glabian Rumph will serve as one of the primary ball carriers. Junior SPECIAL TEAMS: Iquan Deed will Vanshawn Pate will also see action again serve as the Bulldogs punter. in the backfield. The Bulldogs enjoy Brantley Pate, Jalaan Redding, Vanshawn the luxury of having two very good Pate and Omar McDonald all have big receivers. Senior James Keen was play potential in the return game. second team all-region last COACH LESTER SAYS: season and tight end Corbin “Depth is an issue but if we’re healthy I like Brown also posses very good these kids. We have a lot of confidence going hands. Coach Lester says the into the season especially since everyone has big question mark on offense one year under their belts in our system.” is the line where he must replace departed Demison McKenzie and Ben Stancil. All in all, WE THINK: This figures to be another three starters are gone from the playoff year for the Bulldogs. They offensive front. The tackle spots are return a field full of starters and have set with Colby McKenzie and Obryan the potential to make a run at a region Shelley holding down the fort. But, the title. If they can make it through their competition continues to fill the other opener at Peach County injury-free, spots. Senior Sam Lockhart could be the Bulldogs could give their fans moved into one of those positions. plenty to cheer about in 2009. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

@ Peach County

S.4

Dooly County

S.11

Jordan

S.18

@ Lamar County

S.25

Callaway

O.2

@ Crawford County

O.9

Heard County

O.16

@ Pike County

O.23 O.30

Manchester @ Spencer M A C O N

88

2008 RESULTS

Peach County @ Dooly County @ Jordan Lamar County @ Callaway Crawford County @ Heard County Pike County @ Manchester Spencer @ Lovett

L L L W L W W L W W L

BY THE NUMBERS

6-42 8-28 0-19 20-0 14-40 13-13 30-24 16-17 8-7 33-19 12-45

145

Former Bulldog great Antonio Cochran recorded 145 career tackles in a 7-year NFL career that ended in 2005. Cochran played for both the Seattle Seahawks and Arizona Cardinals.

Iquan Deed

BULLDOGS FILE

HEAD COACH

Henry Lester (1st year) Overall (3rd year: 2-18-0)

COACHING STAFF James Brown, Phillip Duncan, Marquis Westbrook, Timothy Solomon, Dexter McKenzie, Robert Yedak, Roy Walker

2008 RECORD 5-6-0

LAST 3 YEARS 19-15-0

LAST 5 YEARS 39-20-0

STADIUM Adams-Maffett Field

REGION 5-AA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB WR WR OL OL DL

Iquan Deed (SR.) Glabian Rumph (JR.) James Keen (SR.) Corbin Brown (SR.) Colby McKenzie (SR.) Obryan Shelley (SR.) Jarvis Turner (JR.)

B U L L D O G S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

Trevotis Tooks (JR.) Brian Mitchell (SR.) Maurice Nelson (SR.) Jalaan Redding (JR.) Omar McDonald (SO.) Brantley Pate (SR.) Vanshawn Pate (JR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE OL Demison McKenzie, RB Justin Redding, DL Jamie Walker, WR Cailon Shaw

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

C O U N T Y

DL LB LB DB DB DB RB

photo courtesy: Dave Bowker

BULLDOGS


CRAWFORD CO. EAGLES

2008 WRAP: The Eagles won four games in 2008 but missed making the playoffs by one game for the second straight season. The defense was stout all season allowing only 20 defensive touchdowns in ten games but the offense struggled at times to put points on the board. Crawford County lost three games by six points or less including a one point heartbreaker against Macon County 13-12. This season Tony Byram thinks his team can compete and break through that playoff barrier.

DEFENSE: The Eagles were tough defensively in 2008 and with nine starters returning, the pieces are in place for a repeat performance. Nick Nelson was All-Region at Nose Guard last season and he’ll get help this year from rising sophomore Brandon Colbert. Look for Adrian Grant and Dominique Riley to add muscle and quickness up front. Senior Jerrod Barner is the mainstay at a linebacker spot and should deliver plenty of big hits. The secondary features plenty of senior leadership: Artavious Preston intercepted six passes last season. He’ll be joined by Cordias Howard, Dennoris Solomon and Dadrick Bartley.

OFFENSE: There is plenty of experience as seven starters return offensively. Up front four starters return to the offensive line. Juniors Scottie Woodfin, SPECIAL TEAMS: Dontavious Lee is Justin Burkes, along with seniors Nick gone which means Adrian Grant will Nelson and Ryan Raines should form handle the kicking duties. Artavious the nucleus of a very solid unit. Derelle Preston returned three kick-offs for Smith returns for his second season as touchdowns last season and should the Eagles quarterback and he’ll have once again provide a return threat. the luxury of handing the ball COACH BYRUM SAYS: off to Adrian Grant. The 6’3”, “If we can stay injury free we can compete 240 Grant showed what he but numbers are a problem especially if we could do in the second half get hit by injuries.” of the season and Byram is confident grant can do it again. Jobias Johnson is a rising talent who should also find the WE THINK: We like this group of end zone this season. At receiver, the Eagles. They’re talented and hungry Eagles will miss all-region performer especially after missing out on the Dontavious Lee; however, seniors playoff party by one game in 2007 and Dadrick Bartley and E.J. Raines provide 2008. The big question mark is depth experience and big-play ability at the so the starters must stay healthy. wide receiver slots. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28

Taylor County

S.5

@ Westover

S.11

@ Pike County

S.18

Manchester

S.25

@ Spencer

O.2

Macon County

O.9

@ Jordan

O.16

Lamar County

O.22 N.6

@ Callaway Heard County

2008 RESULTS

@ Taylor County Westover Pike County @ Manchester Spencer @ Macon County Jordan @ Lamar County Callaway @ Heard County

C R A W F O R D

W L L L W L W W L L

BY THE NUMBERS

27-0 12-16 12-23 0-21 14-6 12-13 7-6 28-7 26-32 20-34

5

The Eagles were shut-out five straight times against arch rival Macon County from 2003-2007. Last season, Crawford County lost to the Bulldogs by just a point 13-12.

photo courtesy: Dave Bowker

c

Derelle Smith

EAGLES FILE

HEAD COACH

Tony Byram (16th year: 69-84-0) Overall (20th year: 94-112-0)

COACHING STAFF

Matt Gordon, Craig Puckett, Edward Howard, Stephen Johnson, Dave Moore

2008 RECORD 4-6-0

LAST 3 YEARS 13-17-0

LAST 5 YEARS 14-36-0

STADIUM J.B. Hawkins Complex

REGION 5-AA

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB WR WR OL OL OL

Derelle Smith (SR.) Adrian Grant (JR.) Dadrick Bartley (SR.) E.J. Raines (SR.) Scottie Woodfin (JR.) Justin Burkes (JR.) Ryan Raines (SR.)

DL DL LB DB DB DB

Nick Nelson (SR.) Brandon Colbert (SO.) Jerrod Barner (SR.) Artavious Preston (SR.) Cordias Howard (SR.) Dennoris Solomon (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE

WR Dontavious Lee, DL Brandon Bowker, DL Rhyeme Davis, DL Quinton Hollis

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

C O U N T Y

E A G L E S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

89


REGION 7-A FORECASTED FINISH

photo courtesy: Mike Newman

1. Lincoln County 2. Wilkinson County 3. Washington-Wilkes 4. Warren County 5. Aquinas 6. Hancock Central 7. GMC 8. Glascock County PLAYERS TO WATCH PLAYER

Lincoln County

POSITION

Quayshon Simmons LB

FINAL 2008 STANDINGS

has been the dominant team in Region 7A and the Red Devils appear to once again be the favorites even though the gap is tightening. A.G. Middlebrooks (over 1400 yards rushing) returns for the Devils, but he will miss the first part of the season because of an injury. Marquila Parks is getting college attention at defensive tackle. The team that’s been on the verge of challenging Lincoln for the top spot is Wilkinson County. Like the Red Devils, the Warriors also advanced to the state semifinals last season before losing to eventual champion ECI. Led by LB Quayshon Simmons and DB Bernardis Hughes, Wilco should be stout defensively but scoring points could be questionable. Lee Hutto left Warren County to become the new coach at Washington-Wilkes. Hutto will implement the Wing-T offense and Eric Scott is a retuning thousand-yard rusher. At Warren County, Marleau Blount was promoted to head coach. The Screaming Devils return 15 starters including junior running back Colby Reynolds. Aquinas welcomes Matt LeZotte as their new head coach. Hancock Central will likely move WR Marcus Walker to quarterback. GMC has a new coach in Brad Owens but the Bulldogs like Glascock County will not play a region schedule this season.

SCHOOL

Wilkinson Co.

Marquila Parks

DT

Lincoln County

Eric Scott

FB

Wash.-Wilkes

Colby Reynolds

RB

Warren County

A.G. Middlebrooks

RB

Lincoln County

REGION

OVERALL

1. Lincoln County

5-0-0

12-2-0

2. Wilkinson Co.

4-1-0

10-4-0

3. Wash.-Wilkes

3-2-0

6-5-0

4. Warren County

2-3-0

4-7-0

5. Aquinas

1-4-0

3-7-0

6. Hancock-Central 0-5-0

0-10-0

7. Glascock Co.

0-0-0

8-2-0

8. GMC

0-0-0

4-6-0


WILKINSON CO. WARRIORS

2008 WRAP: The 2008 season proved to be the finest in Warrior football history. The team strung together a five game win streak early and then rattled off four more victories late in the year including playoff wins over Commerce, Whitefield Academy and Turner County in a mud bowl game in Ashburn. The Warriors Cinderella season was finally halted by ECI in the state semi-finals but not before WILCO put a scare in the defending state champions finally falling 15-7.

DEFENSE: The Warriors were very tough on defense last year and this year’s unit could be even better. They return nine starters from a squad that posted five shutouts including four in a row in the regular season. Alvin Dupree and Armondo Ford will lead the attack up front. Backing them up will be a trio of experienced linebackers. Patrick Reynolds, Maurice Ingram and Quayshon Simmons all started last season and all three specialized in making big plays. Safety Bernardis Hughes and Cornerbacks Jereme Jackson and Immanuel Shinholster all return in the secondary.

OFFENSE: The Warriors will once again run the Wing-T but they must find a replacement for departed quarterback Tony McCrea. McCrea SPECIAL TEAMS: This is an area of could make things happen he will concern for Coach Hagins. He must certainly be missed. Senior transfer find a kicker to replace Bruce Lee. Calvin Harris has the inside track to Bernardis Hughes should handle the replace McCrea. Head coach James punting duties. Immanuel Shinholster Hagins says Maurice Ingram could also will serve as the main return threat for see action at the position. The Warriors the Warriors. have several fine running COACH HAGINS SAYS: backs to carry the pigskin “We have many returnees. Our defense will led by junior Ricky Jones and be our strongest point. Our offense has to senior Bernardis Hughes. score enough points for us to win some close Both are dangerous threats. games” Immanuel Shinholster and Jereme Jackson will also action in the backfield. Tevin Underwood and WE THINK: The Warriors should batDevontaye Drayton will be the primary tle region powerhouse Lincoln County receiving threats although Bernardis for the region title. This team has a Hughes will also see action at the chance to duplicate last season’s playwide receiver position. Three starters off run. The defense is certainly formireturn on the offensive line including dable but the real key will be whether senior Deangelo Lewis, junior Jovon or not the offense can score enough James and Jadarius Wiggins. points to win the big games. 2009 SCHEDULE

A.28 S.4 S.11 S.18 O.2 O.9 O.16 O.23 O.30 N.6

2008 RESULTS

Twiggs County L Bacon County W @ Bacon County @ Wilcox County L Wilcox County @ Savannah Country Day W @ Randolph-Clay W Savannah County Day Warren County W Randolph-Clay Aquinas W @ Warren County Washington-Wilkes W @ Lincoln County L @ Aquinas @ Hancock Central W @ Washington-Wilkes Commerce W Lincoln County @ Whitefield Academy W Hancock Central @ Turner County W @ E.C.I. L W I L K I N S O N C O U N @ Twiggs County

12-28 47-0 14-30 8-0 39-0 48-0 48-0 44-7 0-20 58-6 21-7 38-8 7-6 7-15 T Y

BY THE NUMBERS

14

The 14 games the Warriors played last season were the most in a single season in school history. The 10 wins tied for the second most in a season. The 1999 team won 11 games.

photo courtesy: Joey WIlson

w

Quayshon Simmons

WA R R I O R S F I L E

HEAD COACH

James Hagins (14th year: 74-66-2)

COACHING STAFF Kevin Anderson, Jeb Stewart, Brian French, Wilbert Simmons

2008 RECORD 10-4-0

LAST 3 YEARS 19-18-0

LAST 5 YEARS 27-30-0

STADIUM Wilkinson County

REGION 7-A

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB RB WR WR OL OL OL

Calvin Harris (SR.) Ricky Jones (JR.) Bernardis Hughes (JR.) Tevin Underwood (JR.) Devontaye Drayton (JR.) Jovon James (JR.) Deangelo Lewis (SR.) Jadarius Wiggins (SO.)

DL DL DL LB LB LB DB DB

Alvin Dupree (JR.) Armondo Ford (SR.) Jackie Hughes (SR.) Patrick Reynolds (JR.) Maurice Ingram (SR.) Quayshon Simmons (SR.) Immanuel Shinholster (SR.) Jereme Jackson (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE QB Tony McCrea, OL Damian Todd, OL Fabian Todd, DB Travis Whipple

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

W A R R I O R S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

91


G.M.C.

BULLDOGS

2008 WRAP: The Bulldogs made strides in 2008 as they spent the season playing a non-region schedule. They started strong winning three of their first five games but then lack of depth and injuries took their toll as the Bulldogs struggled down the stretch winning only one of their final five games to finish 4-6. The four wins were the most since 2002 and gives the ‘Dogs something to build on.

DEFENSE: The defensive side of the ball is where Coach Owens is expecting big things this season. He is putting his most athletic players on the defensive line and and using them only on defense in hopes of making this a team strong point. Senior Hudson Wingfield, juniors Skyler Walker and Ben Crawley and sophomore Justin Parham will be counted on to make big plays and keep the other team out of the end zone. J.T. Stevens and Matt Harrison provide athleticism at the linebacking slot. Zoe Lumpkin, Demarhea Rivers and freshman Taylor Payne will handle the secondary duties. Payne will also see some action at tailback.

OFFENSE: Quarterback Mech Melder is gone but senior Will Parker is ready and willing to try and fill Melder’s shoes. First year GMC head coach Brad Owens says Parker is a three sport very athlete who is very athletic. Parker will spend a lot of time handing the ball SPECIAL TEAMS: Senior Scott Johnson off to talented senior running back will handle the kicking duties. Johnson Donovan Smith. Smith is a good one was 19-19 in PAT’s in 2008 and also with big play potential almost every made 4-7 field goals. Donovan Smith time he touches the ball. J.T. Stevens will likely be a main return threat. will also get his hands on the ball often. Matt Harrison presents COACH OWENS SAYS: a very nice target from his “We’re gonna be a lot more competitive in tight end position which is close games because we can two platoon. Our good since Coach Owens goal is win as many games as we can so we says the Bulldogs are very can prove we can play a region schedule.” thin at the wide receiver slot where seniors John Austin Vance and John Layfield will compete WE THINK: On paper this has the for playing time. The offensive line is look of a pretty good team. There is all new and will be led by Joel Bentley. talent on both sides of the ball and Bentley played in the band last season Coach Owens plan to play his defensive but came out for the team in the lineman just one way could pay big spring and earned MVP honors. Senior dividends. The Bulldogs have almost Nathan Seagraves will also help out up 50 kids out and the added numbers front. will help as the season rolls along. 2009 SCHEDULE

S.4

@ Wheeler County

S.11

Athens Christian

S.18

@ Aquinas

S.25

Mt. Paran Christian

O.9

Montgomery County

O.16

@ Towns County

O.23

@ Glascock County

O.30

@ Hebron

N.6

North Paulding

2008 RESULTS

Webster County Wheeler County @ Athens Christian Aquinas @ Mt. Paran Christian @ Montgomery County Towns County Glascock County Hebron @ North Paulding

W W L L W L L L W L

BY THE NUMBERS

28-8 24-8 13-33 6-13 28-0 10-42 14-49 3-49 42-28 20-44

8

The most wins in a single season by any GMC team is 8. The last time the Bulldogs won 8 games was back in 1975.

Will Parker

BULLDOGS FILE

HEAD COACH

Brad Owens (1st year)

COACHING STAFF Brett Marshall, Stephen Simpson, Cary Wilson, Ross Couch, Shawn Dennis

2008 RECORD 4-6-0

LAST 3 YEARS 6-24-0

LAST 5 YEARS 9-41-0

STADIUM Davenport Field

REGION 7-A (Non region schedule)

TOP RETURNING PLAYERS QB RB RB WR WR TE OL OL

Will Parker (JR.) Donovan Smith (SR.) J.T. Stevens (JR.) Jon Austin Vance (SR.) John Layfield (SR.) Matt Harrison (SR.) Joel Bentley (SR.) Nathan Seagraves (SR.)

92

M I L I T A R Y

DL DL DL LB DB DB DB K

Justin Parham (SO.) Hudson Wingfield (SR.) Skyler Walker (JR.) Chase Bloodworth (JR.) Zoe Lumpkin (JR.) Demarhea Rivers (SO.) Taylor Payne (FR.) Scott Johnson (SR.)

TOUGH TO REPLACE QB Mech Melder, WR Joey Waddell, OL John Jackson, DL Heath Hudson

POWER RANKINGS OFFENSE DEFENSE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYOFF TEAM

G E O R G I A

photo courtesy: Union Recorder

Bulldogs

B U L L D O G S

Brad Bibb’s Prep Football Preview 2009

NA


The College Page GEORGIA

GA. TECH

GA. SOUTHERN

FT. VALLEY ST.

S.5 S.12 S.19 S.26 O.3 O.10 O.17 O.31 N.7 N.14 N.21 N.28

S.5 S.10 S.17 S.26 O.3 O.10 O.17 O.24 O.31 N.7 N.14 N.28

S.5 S.12 S.19 S.26 O.3 O.10 O.17 0.24 N.7 N.14 N.21

A.29 S.5 S.12 S.19 S.26 O.3 O.10 O.17 O.24 O.31 N.7

@ Oklahoma State South Carolina @ Arkansas Arizona State LSU @ Tennessee @ Vanderbilt Florida (Jacksonville) Tennessee Tech Auburn Kentucky @ Georgia Tech

Jacksonville State Clemson @ Miami North Carolina @ Mississippi St. @ Florida State Virginia Tech @ Virginia @ Vanderbilt Wake Forest @ Duke Georgia

Albany @ South Dakota State Western Carolina @ Elon @ Wofford @ North Carolina Chattanooga @ Appalachian State @ Samford Furman The Citadel

Clark @ Morehouse @ Tuskegee Lane @ Edward Waters @ Miles Stillman @ Southern @ Benedict Kentucky State Albany State (Columbus)

AUBURN

FLORIDA

ALABAMA

TENNESSEE

S.5 S.12 S.19 S.26 O.3 O.10 O.17 O.24 O.31 N.7 N.14 N.27

S.5 S.12 S.19 S.26 O.10 O.17 O.24 O.31 N.7 N.14 N.21 N.28

S.5 S.12 S.19 S.26 O.3 O.10 O.17 O.24 N.7 N.14 N.21 N.27

S.5 S.12 S.19 S.26 O.3 O.10 O.24 O.31 N.7 N.14 N.21 N.28

La. Tech Mississippi St. West Virginia Ball State @ Tennessee @ Arkansas Kentucky @ LSU Ole Miss Furman @ Georgia Alabama

Chas. Southern Troy Tennessee @ Kentucky @ LSU Arkansas @ Mississippi St. Georgia (Jacksonville) Vanderbilt @ South Carolina FIU Florida State

Va. Tech (Atnala) FIU North Texas Arkansas @ Kentucky @ Ole Miss South Carolina Tennessee LSU @ Mississippi State Chattanooga @ Auburn

Western Kentucky UCLA @ Florida Ohio Auburn Georgia @ Alabama South Carolina Memphis @ Ole Miss Vanderbilt @ Kentucky

S. CAROLINA

FLORIDA ST.

CLEMSON

G.M.C.

S.3 S.12 S.19 S.24 O.3 O.10 O.17 O.24 O.31 N.7 N.14 N.28

S.7 S.12 S.19 S.26 O.3 O.10 O.24 O.31 N.7 N.14 N.21 N.28

S.5 S.10 S.19 S.26 O.3 O.17 O.24 O.31 N.7 N.14 N.21 N.28

A.29 S.5 S.12 S.19 S.26 O.10 O.15 O.24 N.7 N.14

@ N.C. State @ Georgia Florida Atlantic Ole Miss S.C. State Kentucky @ Alabama Vanderbilt @ Tennessee @ Arkansas Florida Clemson

Miami Jacksonville State @ BYU South Florida @ Boston College Georgia Tech @ North Carolina N.C. State @ Clemson @ Wake Forest Maryland @ Florida

Middle Tennessee @ Georgia Tech Boston College TCU @ Maryland Wake Forest @ Miami Coastal Carolina Florida State @ N.C. State Virginia @ South Carolina

@ Ellsworth Navarro @ Snow Arkansas Baptist N. Carolina Tech @ S. Alabama JV Valdosta State JV Louisburg @ Erie Lackawanna


BUMPER CROP OFF TO COLLEGE DIVISION I SIGNEES

JONES

BURNETT

HAWKINS

TAYLOR

FARMS

R. SMITH

PLAYER

POS

HIGH SCHOOL

COLLEGE CHOICE

Abry Jones

DE

Northside

Georgia

Julian Burnett

LB

Westside

Georgia Tech

Corico Hawkins

LB

Baldwin

Clemson

Reggie Taylor

DB

Peach County

Auburn

Johnnie Farms

OL

Perry

North Carolina

Rashard Smith

DB

Dublin

N.C. State

Brandon Watts

LB

Washington Co.

Georgia Tech

Justin Kitchens

DE

Houston County

Purdue

Trey Smith

WR

Perry

Western Michigan

Jadareius Hamlin

OL

Mary Persons

Middle Tennessee

GAMES MATCHUP

S.5 S.5 S.10 S.12 S.19 O.3 O.3 O.10 O.10 O.10 O.17 O.17 O.17 O.24 O.31 N.7 N.7 N.14 N.21 N.21 N.28

Georgia @ Oklahoma St. Alabama vs. Va. Tech (Atlanta) Clemson @ Ga. Tech USC @ Ohio State Tennessee @ Florida LSU @ Georgia USC @ California Florida @ LSU Georgia @ Tennessee Ga. Tech @ Florida St. USC @ Notre Dame Oklahoma vs. Texas (Dallas) Va. Tech @ Ga. Tech Auburn @ LSU Georgia vs. Florida (Jax) LSU @ Alabama Oklahoma @ Nebraska Auburn @ Georgia LSU @ Ole Miss Ohio State @ Michigan Georgia @ Ga. Tech

FLORIDA

DATE

1.

Don’t Miss

2. Oklahoma 3. USC 4. Ohio State 5. Penn State 6. LSU 7. Texas 8. Alabama 9. Georgia 10. California 11. Ole Miss 12. Boise State 13. Rutgers 14. Oregon 15. Virginia Tech 16. Oklahoma State 17. Georgia Tech 18. Notre Dame 19. BYU 20. TCU 21. Michigan State 22. Utah 23. Florida State 24. Cincinnati 25. Nebraska

TOP 25


25 BIBB

years ago, these former Sportscasters faced off each week in a battle that became known as LOY MAL

PREP PICKS THE BATTLE CONTINUES

BIBB PICK

MATCHUP

MALLOY PICK

DEER-WINDSOR

A.28

TATTNALL @ DEER-WINDSOR

TATTNALL

COVENANT

S.3

FULLINGTON @ COVENANT

FULLINGTON

WESTFIELD

S.4

WESTFIELD @ MT. De SALES

MT. De SALES

E. LAURENS

S.4

E. LAURENS @ BLECKLEY CO.

BALDWIN

S.11

PEACH COUNTY @ BALDWIN

WILCOX CO.

S.11

WILCOX CO. @ WILKINSON CO.

J. MILLEDGE

S.11

J.MILLEDGE @ BRENTWOOD

PERRY

S.11

HAWKINSVILLE @ PERRY

DUBLIN

S.18

DUBLIN @ DODGE COUNTY

TERRELL

S.18

TERRELL @ WINDSOR

WESTSIDE

S.25

BAINBRIDGE @ WESTSIDE

JACKSON

S.25

JACKSON @ MARY PERSONS

W. ROBINS

S.26

VALDOSTA @ W. ROBINS

CENTRAL

O.1

CENTRAL VS. HOWARD

LOWNDES

O.2

LOWNDES @ NORTHSIDE

NORTHEAST

O.2

SOUTHWEST VS. NORTHEAST

NORTHEAST

CRAWFORD CO.

O.2

MACON CO. @ CRAWFORD CO.

CRAWFORD CO.

PEACH COUNTY

O.9

CAIRO @ PEACH COUNTY

PEACH COUNTY

STRATFORD

O.16

FPD @ STRATFORD

STRATFORD

W. ROBINS

O.30

W. ROBINS VS. NORTHSIDE

NORTHSIDE

BALDWIN

O.30

WASHINGTON CO. @ BALDWIN

WILKINSON CO.

O.30

LINCOLN CO. @ WILKINSON CO.

TATTNALL

O.30

STRATFORD @ TATTNALL

STRATFORD

TWIGGS CO.

N.6

DOOLY CO. @ TWIGGS CO.

TWIGGS CO.

DUBLIN

N.6

JEFFERSON CO. @ DUBLIN

DUBLIN

BLECKLEY CO. PEACH COUNTY WILCOX CO. BRENTWOOD PERRY DUBLIN TERRELL WESTSIDE JACKSON W. ROBINS HOWARD LOWNDES

WASHINGTON CO. WILKINSON CO.

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Brad Bibb's Prep Football Preview  

Middle Georgia's most comprehensive pre-season look at the high school football season.

Brad Bibb's Prep Football Preview  

Middle Georgia's most comprehensive pre-season look at the high school football season.

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