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Today, we begin our preview of this week's 56 playoff games with a look at Class A-Private and A-Public's opening round action. Playoff brackets and pairings can be found in the left panel.


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Football Playoff Brackets
A-Private Preview
A-Public Preview
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How many football state titles has Lincoln County won?

Today's answer can be found in the newsletter!

Saturday's Answer:
Central Gwinnett held North Gwinnett to 160 total yards of offense in its 12-9 victory on Friday. 




Friday, Nov. 21


Second Round Pairings


R5 T2 Etowah at R3 T1 Westlake

R8 T4 Central Gwinnett at R2 T3 Newton

R5 T3 Roswell at R4 T1 Hillgrove

R1 T3 Lee County at R8 T1 Archer

R4 T2 McEachern at R6 T1 Alpharetta

R8 T3 Grayson at R2 T1 Tucker

R3 T2 Hughes at R5 T1 Milton

R8 T2 Dacula at R1 T1 Colquitt County


R6 T3 Mays at R3 T1 Ware County

R2 T3 Jones County at R7 T1 Kell

R6 T2 Stephenson at R4 T1 Stockbridge

R7 T4 Sequoyah at R2 T2 Houston County

R3 T3 Glynn Academy at R6 T1 Creekside

R7 T2 Dalton at R2 T1 Northside-Warner Robins

R3 T2 Coffee at R5 T1 Allatoona

R8 T2 Gainesville at R1 T1 Harris County

Class AAAA


R5 T2 Sandy Creek at R3 T1 Wayne County

R2 T3 Baldwin at R7 T1 Cartersville

R6 T2 Marist at R4 T1 Griffin

R2 T2 Mary Persons at R8 T1 Buford

R4 T2 Eastside at R6 T1 St. Pius

R8 T3 Stephens County at R2 T1 West Laurens

R3 T2 Burke County at R5 T1 Woodward Academy

R8 T2 North Oconee at R1 T1 Cairo

Class AAA


R5 T2 Callaway at R3 T1 Washington County

R8 T4 Oconee County at R1 T2 Pierce County

R6 T2 Adairsville at R4 T1 Blessed Trinity

R1 T3 Dodge County at R8 T1 Jefferson

R3 T3 Westside-Augusta/R4 T2 Cedar Grove at R6 T1 Calhoun

R1 T4 Appling County at R8 T3 Elbert County

R4 T3 Westminster at R5 T1 Central-Carroll

R8 T2 Hart County at R1 T1 Cook

Class AA

R5 T2 Heard County at R3 T1 Screven County

R8 T4 Washington-Wilkes at  R1 T2 Brooks County

R6 T2 Lovett at R4 T1 Macon County

R2 T2 Benedictine at R8 T1 Rabun County

R4 T2 Lamar County at R6 T1 GAC

R7 T2 Coosa at R2 T1 Vidalia

R6 T4 Pace Academy at R3 T2 Jefferson County

T7 T3 Model at R1 T1 Fitzgerald

First Round Pairings

Class A-Private

#16 Christian Heritage at #1 Calvary Day

#9 Mount Pisgah at #8 Landmark Christian

#12 Athens Christian at #5 Eagle's Landing Christian

#13 First Presbyterian Day at #4 Prince Avenue Christian

#14 Stratford Academy at #3 Mount Paran

#11 St. Anne-Pacelli at #6 Savannah Christian

#10 Pinecrest Academy at #7Tattnall Square

#15 St. Francis at #2 Aquinas

Class A-Public

#16 Greenville at #1 Marion County

#9 Emanuel County Institute at #8 Mt. Zion-Carroll

#12 Lincoln County at #5 Charlton County

#13 Jenkins County at #4 Hawkinsville

#14 Calhoun County at #3 Mitchell County

#11 Clinch County at #6 Commerce

#10 Dooly County #7 Claxton

#15 Atkinson County at #2 Irwin County


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Monday, November 17, 2014

By Craig Sager II
Aquinas rides 24 straight wins into Round 1


#15 St. Francis at #2 Aquinas

Aquinas has not lost a game since 2012

Photo by Sonny Kennedy

and the 10-0 Fighting Irish are looking to defend their Class A-Private state title. Aquinas posted a one-point victory over Stratford Academy and survived a 15-13 victory over Lincoln County. St. Francis is in the postseason for the first time in school history and posted an impressive 21-0 win over Mount Zion-Carroll this season. 

h three balls for 135 yards and one touchdown.
#16 Christian Heritage at #1 Calvary Day


Christian Heritage is in just its fourth varsity season and was the last team that snuck into the Class A-Private playoffs. The Lions are led by third year head coach Preston Poag and have followed up last year's school-record 8-3 season with a 5-5 record with victories over Walker and Fellowship Christian to close the year. Calvary Day remains undefeated and looks to make another run to the finals after falling 27-7 to Aquinas in last year's state championship. The Cavaliers are averaging 36.8 points per game offensively, while allowing just 10 points per contest.

#9 Mount Pisgah at #8 Landmark Christian

Wayne Brantley led Landmark Christian to an 8-2 regular season in his third year at the helm. The Eagles lost to Class AAA Central-Carroll 21-7 and fell to ELCA 38-28 in the Region 5 championship game. Mount Pisgah beat ELCA 28-21 this season and fell to undefeated Mount Paran in the Region 6 championship. The Patriots finished 12-1 in Mike Forester's first year as head coach last year and look to make another run in the playoffs.

#12 Athens Christian at #5 Eagle's Landing Christian

ELCA opened the season 0-6 but handled its four region games and swept the Region 5 competition. The Chargers won the 2012 state championship and have won 48 games in the previous four seasons, so experience is a strength of this dangerous 4-6 team. Athens Christian rides a five-game win streak into the playoffs but the Eagles have lost their last five games to ELCA.

#13 First Presbyterian Day at #4 Prince Avenue Christian

First Presbyterian is in the playoffs for the fifth time in the last six seasons and sits at 7-3 with losses to Lincoln County, Stratford Academy and Tattnall Square. That difficult slate of opponents prepared First Presbyterian Day for the intensity of the playoffs. Prince Avenue Christian is in its second season with former Camden County head coach Jeff Herron at the helm and finished the season with six straight double-digit victories. The Wolverines have outscored their opponents by an average 20 points per game this season.

#14 Stratford Academy at #3 Mount Paran

Head coach Mitch Jordan and Mount Paran enter the playoffs undefeated for the first time in school history. A talented roster that features 6-foot-9 center Zach Strong and running back Dorian Walker lead the Eagles. Stratford Academy is GHSA for the first time after spending decades dominating GISA competition. Stratford Academy fell 28-27 to defending champion Aquinas this season and there is enough experience on the team to challenge the unbeaten Eagles.

#11 St. Anne-Pacelli at #6 Savannah Christian

After posting losing records for five straight seasons, Randy Grace has led Pacelli to consecutive 7-win seasons and this year's team is his best yet. Pacelli has key wins over Greenville, Schley County and Brookstone and suffered one-score defeats to Dooly County and Marion County. Savannah used a 15-0 season to win the 2011 state championship but after posting 62 wins from 2007-2011, Savannah Christian dipped to 8-4 in 2012 and 5-5-1 in 2013. However, the Raiders are 9-1 this year with 7-3 loss to Calvary Day as the only mark on their dominant season and are a favorite to challenge for this year's crown.

#10 Pinecrest Academy at #7 Tattnall Square

Tattnall Square dominated its first season in GHSA and jumped to a 9-0 start before falling 49-21 to Aquinas in the Region 7 championship game in the season finale. Pinecrest Academy sits at 7-3 and is in the playoffs for the fifth time in school history and first time since 2009. Pinecrest was undefeated at home this year but went just 2-3 in road games.

By Craig Sager II
Field of contenders clash for quarterfinals berths

#16 Greenville at #1 Marion County

Marion County earned the top seed with

Photo by Terrance Johnson

its undefeated regular season. The defending champs enter their first-round matchup riding a 15-game win streak. The Eagles posted three shutouts this season and held two other opponents under seven points. Greenville was 1-9 in Vex Farley's first year last season, but has reached the postseason with a 5-5 record in Farley's second year at the helm.


#9 Emanuel County Institute at #8 Mt. Zion-Carroll

ECI won the Class A-Public championship in 2012 and after finishing 6-5 last year, the Bulldogs are 8-2 entering the playoffs. Mount Zion-Carroll was 0-20 from 2010-11 but have gone 17-13 ever since Keith Holloway took over the program in 2012. Mt. Zion-Carroll's last postseason appearance came in 2005 and the Eagles have not posted a playoff victory since 2001.


#12 Lincoln County at #5 Charlton County

Charlton County posted three straight state titles from 2004-06 but have not reclaimed the title since, despite making it to the state finals last year. Coincidentally, 14-time state champion Lincoln County's last title also game in the 2006 season. The Red Devils are led by first-year head coach Kevin Banks and enter the playoffs with momentum after falling 15-13 to Aquinas and topping Stratford Academy 21-20 in the final regular season game.

#13 Jenkins County at #4 Hawkinsville

Hawkinsville fell to Marion County in the semifinals last year and its only loss of this season came to Marion County (13-6) on Oct. 17. The Red Devils boast a defense that has allowed just 6.3 points per game. Jenkins County dropped three straight games in the heart of the season but finished on a high-note with a trio of victories. The Eagles have made a tremendous turnaround after a 1-9 season last year.

#14 Calhoun County at #3 Mitchell County

Calhoun County has won seven games in a season for the first time since 1993 and also the first time in John Williams 19 years as a head football coach. The Cougars wrapped up their season with a 30-0 victory over Baconton Charter to move to 4-1 in Region 1. Their one loss came to their first round opponent, Mitchell County. Mitchell County opened its season 1-4 but went 5-0 in Region 1 play, including a 12-8 victory over visiting Calhoun County.

#11 Clinch County at #6 Commerce

Clinch County finished 15-0 and won the state championship in 2010 but has not been able to replicate the dominant season since and capture what would be the school's sixth state title. Two-year head coach Michael Brown leads commerce and the Tigers' only losses this year were Class AAA Jefferson (28-3) and region-opponent Prince Avenue Christian (48-27). The Tigers' 8-2 record is the most wins since the 2006 season. Clinch County has an offense that has put up 32 points per game this year and Commerce will look to outmatch it with a defensive unit that has surrendered just 17 points per game.

#10 Dooly County #7 Claxton

After suffering losses to Marion County, Hawkinsville and Schley County, Dooly County got back on track and closed the season with three straight double-digit victories over quality opponents. Claxton lost region matchups to Calvary Day and Savannah Christian but was able to topple ECI (29-23) and Jenkins County (35-21) this year. This is the first time in school history that Dooly County and Claxton will face each other.

#15 Atkinson County at #2 Irwin County

Atkinson County snuck into the playoffs at 6-4, but the level of competition that the Rebels battled with has made them a dangerous team. Irwin County is aware of Atkinson County's talent and snuck by the Rebels 21-14 on their Halloween matchup. The Rebels combined for a 2-28 record the three seasons prior to this year. Irwin County rides a seven-game winning streak into the playoffs and huge victories over Clinch County (47-7) and Charlton County (41-14) show how much talent is on the Indians' roster. 



TO: All GHSA-affiliated High School Football Head Coaches
You and one guest are cordially invited to attend the
2014 Salute to Georgia High School Football Reception
Presented by Ford


Saturday, December 13, 2014
9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Georgia Dome-Atlanta Falcons Owners Club
One Georgia Dome Drive
Atlanta, Georgia, 30313
**Lower Level in between section 115-116
R.S.V.P. by Monday, December 1 to (404) 367-2243 or
David Quiroga at

With the start time of 10 a.m. on Saturday, December 13th for the first State Championship game, this reception invite allows you and a guest to enjoy a meal, mingle with fellow coaches as well as the 2014 Classification Coaches of the Year, Warrick Dunn Captain in the Community of the Year and the Lifetime Achievement winner. Additionally, you will have the opportunity to win a number of prizes for your outstanding commitment to the sport of football.

As in previous years, the Atlanta Falcons would like to extend the opportunity to the first 50 coaches that R.S.V.P. for the reception to receive two tickets to the Falcons vs. Carolina Panthers game on Sunday, December 28, 2014 at 1 p.m. at the Georgia Dome. If interested, please make sure to mention when you R.S.V.P. and David Quiroga will follow-up with a confirmation of attendance and tickets.

Should you decide to stay in Atlanta, we recommend the following hotels within six blocks of the Georgia Dome: Omni at CNN Center (404) 659-0000, Embassy Suites (404) 223-2300, Residence Inn by Marriott (404) 522-0950, and Quality Hotel (404) 524-7991.



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