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The third Elite Junior showcase at Calhoun this past weekend was a success and there are just three more opportunities left for freshmen Class of 2018 thru current juniors Class of 2016 to join our tour throughout the state. Sign up for our remaining three locations HERE.
Today, we look at Whitefield Academy and Creekside's new coaching hires.

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In This Issue

How many years did Whitefield Academy's new football coach play in the NFL?

Today's answer can be found in the newsletter!

Wednesday's Answer:
The Cedartown girls soccer own a winning record this season but went winless in 2014.





1. Chattahoochee
2. Campbell
3. Duluth
4. Roswell
5. Brookwood
6. Walton
7. Lambert
8. Marietta
9. Harrison

10. Habersham Central


1. Dalton
2. Greenbrier
3. Houston County
4. Gainesville 
5. Riverwood
6. Sequoyah
7. Glynn Academy
8. Starr's Mill
9. Heritage-Conyers
10. McIntosh

Class AAAA
1. St. Pius X
2. Woodward Academy
3. North Oconee
4. Whitewater
5. Johnson
6. LaGrange
7. Jonesboro
8. Southeast Whitfield
9. Northwest Whitfield

10. Buford

Class AAA
1. Westminster
2. Calhoun
3. West Hall
4. Jackson
5. Dawson  County
6. Islands
7. Blessed Trinity
8. East Hall
9. North Murray
10. Decatur

Class AA

1. Greater Atlanta Christian
2. Thomasville
3. Riverside Military
4. Pace Academy
5. Benedictine
6. Holy Innocents'
7. Wesleyan
8. Lovett
9. Union County

10. Long County

Class A
1. Stratford Academy
2. Atlanta International School
3. Savannah Christian
4. Fellowship Christian
5. Paideia
6. Athens Academy
7. Mount Paran Christian
8. Aquinas
9. Hebron Christian Academy
10. St. Anne Pacelli



1. Harrison
2. Lassiter
3. Grayson
4. South Forsyth
5. Walton
6. East Coweta
7. Pope
8. Lambert
9. Parkview

10. Peachtree Ridge


1. McIntosh
2. Northgate
3. Starr's Mill
4. Columbus
5. Gainesville
6. Alexander
7. Rome
8. Richmond Hill
9. North Atlanta
10. Greenbrier

Class AAAA

1. Marist
2. St. Pius X
3. Woodward Academy
4. Veterans
5. Buford
6. Spalding
7. Pike County
8. Whitewater
9. Mary Persons

10. Ola

Class AAA
1. Westminster
2. Blessed Trinity
3. Dawson County
4. Lumpkin County
5. Adairsville
6. Calhoun
7. Decatur
8. Savannah Arts
9. Oconee County

10. Jefferson

Class AA

1. Greater Atlanta Christian
2. Lovett
3. Wesleyan
4. St. Vincent's
5. East Laurens
6. Holy Innocents'
7. Bremen
8. Pace Academy
9. Fitzgerald

10. Lamar County

Class A

1. Fellowship Christian
2. Atlanta International School
3. First Presbyterian Day
4. Paideia
5. Athens Academy
6. Aquinas
7. Stratford Academy
8. Savannah Christian
9. Walker

10. Hebron Christian Academy


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Thursday, April 16, 2015


Check out this week's publication! 





New hires fill vacancies in time for spring ball

Whitefield Academy hired Florida A&M offensive coordinator Quinn F. Gray Sr. as head coach on Wednesday.

Gray started at quarterback for Florida A&M and played six seasons in the NFL. Gray was a head coach at Andrew Jackson High School in Jacksonville for one season before joining Florida A&M's staff for four seasons.

Creekside hired Valdosta offensive line coach Will Rogers to be its next head coach on Wednesday. The 33-year-old played at Creekside and replaces Olten Downs, who left for a football staff position at the University of Georgia after taking the Seminoles to the 2013 Class AAAAA championship. 

Rogers was an assistant under his former Creekside head coach Amos McCreary at Whitewater from 2009 to 2013 before coaching the Wildcats' offensive line last season.


By Craig Sager II

What impact will the GHSA's new limit on full contact practices have

On Monday, the GHSA set limits on full contact during football practices. The new rules, effective this fall, will limit full contact to 45 minutes per day and 135 minutes per week in preseason and then only 30 minutes per day and 90 per week in the regular season. Practices with full-contact drills cannot take place over three consecutive days.


The GHSA's new policy is almost identical to the recommendations that came out of the National Federation of State High School Association's Concussion Summit Task Force and the fact that Georgia was one of the first states to adapt to the changes is something we should be very proud of.


Player safety is football's biggest threat and everybody knows it. It is a matter that arose from decades of hard evidence.

Photo by Jon Barash

From the rule changes in the pros to the adaption of the often-debated targeting rule in college football, we are seeing the efforts to protect the players from these long-neglected truths. That is what the GHSA did, while taking a necessary step on Monday to limit full contact during practices.


Football is a dangerous game and during the season, our teams leave it all on the field once a week. We see the intensity and physicality at its peak, but that is only the tip of the iceberg. Anyone that has ever played football or been around it knows that football practice can be the real test. Games are fun, practice is brutal. Since football's inception, the guys that can handle the physicality and can take and deliver the hits the best are the ones that earn the playing time. Right? You can work year-around but if you cannot deliver a hit in practice, you are never going to see the field as a starter. 


Plenty of coaches have already made changes to limit full contact in Georgia but it is the fact that there are guidelines in place now that I believe helps put things in perspective for not only the players and coaches, but also for the fans. The more pads are taken out of the equation at practice, the more fundamentals can be looked at when evaluating a player and building a team. I played at Walton High School before walking on at wide receiver and special teams at UGA for three years. Practice was game-day for me. I was not going to be one of the guys playing on Saturday's so I did everything I could at practice to get my chance. I honestly cannot remember ever going full pads more than once a week, but that did not mean practice was not incredibly physical.


Every play in football requires 'putting a hat' on somebody. When I was blocking, the harder the force was coming at me, the harder I was going to have to return the hit to avoid getting ran over and letting my teammate get hit. During the days of leather helmets, people blocked and tackled with their shoulders, but in today's football the helmet can be a weapon if other habits are not established early. I saw bad habits and even had bad habits everyday at practice and I made sure I packed on as much size as I could to take this daily punishment. I started playing football in eighth grade and by the time I finished at UGA, my list of injuries included a cracked sternum, two torn shoulders, multiple concussions, a torn meniscus and two dislocated fingers, none of which ever happened in a game.


In fact, only my second torn shoulder even happened in 'full pads', but I had messed it up so many times in our 'limited' contact before that day that it was already in a harness heading into what turned out to be my last ever football practice. I came full speed but he came a tad lower and his power combined with the weight of the helmet drove right through my shoulder pads. The impact left him with minor neck injuries and I fell to the ground with another blown out shoulder. 


I got hurt in practice more because games are such a small fraction of the sport. That is a simple math to understand, but it was also because I focused on trying to survive and earn playing time through physicality and not fundamentals. I did not play the game the right way. I was wrong, but at times I felt I had no other choice. Some of my coaches and fans of the game's physicality over the years implanted this idea in my mind, and that is why I have began to gravitate towards the new vision under the GHSA. You can play fast and you can play fundamentally sound, but practice has to prioritize these changes in order for that to happen. It needs to be taken seriously and Georgia has the quality of coaches to continue making strides.


I overheard a conversation between two former NFL players Monday at the Matt Ryan charity golf tournament about how they would not sign their kids up to play football unless their kid walked up to them, put his hands around their throat and demanded to play. I loved hitting and even taking hits when I played football but that conversation was a wakeup call for me and my initial views of the rule changes began to change. Some may see my support of the change as bad for the sport, but after years of denial, I see it as the only way to save it. Think of the last offseason you saw this many NFL stars in their twenties turning down millions of dollars to retire from the game. It is time for football to start making these relatively easy changes to help promote safety and the GHSA is on the forefront. 





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