Georgia High School Football Daily Spotlight: Players and coaches of the year (so far)

It’s midseason for most teams. It’s premature to conjecture about players of the year. But it’s fun. So let’s do it.

PHOTOS: Vote for which GHSF Daily selections you’d choose in our photo-poll.

Here’s the GHSF Daily’s look at how the awards might fall if they were chosen today:

All-classification player of the year: Blake Sims, Gainesville. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the Georgia Sports Writers Association select an all-class player of the year, and Sims is the front-runner. Sims, committed to Alabama, is 59-for-95 passing for 895 yards and 12 touchdowns, and he’s rushed for 200 yards (6.25 per carry) and five touchdowns. He has played in the fourth quarter only once, as Gainesville’s closest game has been 42-20. And just as important, Gainesville is ranked No. 1. Anything short of the semifinals would injure Sims’ chances of such a big honor.

Class AAAAA

Offense player of the year: Charles Perkins, Collins Hill. Perkins has rushed for 1,003 yards and nine touchdowns on a 5-0 team. Collins Hill is unranked and no shoo-in to prolong Perkins’ season in the playoffs, so watch for Grayson’s Ean Pemberton, North Gwinnett quarterback C.J. Uzomah, McEachern running back Rajaan Bennett and M.L. King running back Mack Brown, especially if their teams make a run and Collins Hill doesn’t.

Defensive player of the year: Alec Ogletree, Newnan. He’s the No. 1 defensive prospect in the state, and he plays for the No. 1- rated scoring defense in AAAAA. Newnan (5-0) is ranked No. 5. Others in the mix include defensive tackles Michael Thornton of Stephenson and Jeffrey Whitaker of Warner Robins and linebacker Telvin Smith of Lowndes.

Coach of the year: Kyle Hockman, McEachern. Seeking their first playoff appearance since 2005, the Indians are ranked No. 6.

Class AAAA

Offense player of the year: Robert Bown, Westside (Macon). Brown has rushed for 930 yards and eight touchdowns for the No. 2-ranked team. Westside needs to go deep in the playoffs to keep Brown at the top. He has not separated himself much from contenders such as Synjyn Days of Hillgrove, Rajion Neal of Sandy Creek, Ken Malcome of Southwest DeKalb, Clarence Jackson of North Clayton and Storm Johnson of Loganville, so this one will go down to the wire.

Defensive player of the year: T.J. Stripling, Southwest DeKalb. Not much missing from Stripling’s resume. He’s a returning first-team all-state defensive end, he’s committed to Georgia, he plays for a defensive-minded state-championship contender and he’s producing on the field. In fact, Stripling has 14 sacks in four games. Southwest DeKalb is 4-1 and ranked No. 3.

Coach of the year: Phillip Ironside, Hillgrove. A fourth-year program cut mostly from the McEachern district is 4-0 and ranked No. 4.

Class AAA

Offense player of the year: Terrell Brigham, Burke County.
Brigham has rushed for 556 yards and six touchdowns and passed for 427 yards (completing 40 of 59 passes) for six touchdowns. Burke has played only four games and beaten four Class AAAA opponents, three that won at least a round in the playoffs last season. Brigham also has punted seven times, caught three passes and made eight tackles. Somehow, Division I-A schools are ignoring him. The main threat to Brigham’s hope of being the AAA offensive player of the year is Gainesville’s Sims, whom we tabbed as the all-class player of the year.

Defensive player of the year: Neiron Ball, Jackson. Jackson is 5-0 and ranked in the top 10 of scoring defense for the second year in a row, and Ball, a defensive end who has committed to Florida, is the ring leader.

Coach of the year: Paul Standard, St. Pius.
Unranked in preseason, St. Pius is 5-0 and No. 3 and still happy about its opening-night rout of Marist.

Class AA

Offense player of the year: B.J. Bostic, Jefferson County. Bostic, who has committed to Georgia Tech to play cornerback, lines up at several positions at Jefferson County, a 5-0 team that is ranked No. 5. He has rushed for 417 yards and six touchdowns on 49 carries, thrown for 267 yards and six touchdowns on 17-of-25 passing and caught five passes for 177 yards and three touchdowns. Counting a kick return, he has scored 10 touchdowns and passed for six more. He has more than 6,000 yards in total offense for his career. Other contenders in a deep field include Lovett’s Jonathan Carkhuff (61-of-101 passing, 765 yards, 10 TDs, 0 interceptions), Fitzgerald’s Trenton Pruitt (728 all-purpose yards, 11 TDs), Charlton County’s Chris Milton (994 yards passing for 13 TDs) and Jefferson’s Darius Minor (530 passing, 283 rushing).

Defensive player of the year: Jessel Curry, Buford. Buford’s defense hasn’t been as dominant as it would like, and Curry’s best work at times this season has been on offense. But if you’re drafting a Class AA all-star defense, Curry, a linebacker, would be our No. 1 pick. He’s committed to Auburn.

Coach of the year: Mike Muschamp, Lovett. The Lions, ranked No. 3, ended Buford’s 32-game winning streak.

Class A

Offense player of the year: Conor Welton, Wesleyan. Welton hasn’t played a full game because of Wesleyan’s insistence on having games decided by halftime, so his numbers aren’t profilic, but they are efficient to the max: 40-of-50 passing, 648 yards, 10 touchdowns, one interception. Other contenders include his teammate, Kyle Karempelis (567 yards rushing, 63 carries). Then there are Johnson County teammates D.J. Dozier (910 yards passing, 500 rushing) and Zack Walker (41 receptions, 678 yards in five games).

Defensive player of the year: Bobby Fulton, Wesleyan. Fulton is a returning first-team all-state player who leads Wesleyan in tackles. Wesleyan’s defense has not been scored on in the No. 1-ranked team’s 5-0 start.

Coach of the year: Donald Chumley, Savannah Christian.
The Raiders crushed ECI and are ranked No. 2 despite heavy graduation losses.

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61 comments Add your comment

SC Fan

September 30th, 2009
9:49 am

Rajion is going to continue to have a stellar year.Look for his production to increase because region play starts Friday against rival Whitewater.He has seen limited time in 3 of his 4 games because of one sided victories.Look for him to have fresh legs going into region play and post season.

Say it Aint So

September 30th, 2009
10:21 am

I would have to say that Coach Hidalgo at Walton should be in the conversation for Coach of The Year for continuing the success of the program after the departure of Ed Dudley and the graduation of senior playmakers from last year. The Raiders have not skipped a beat so far this season. Coach Hockman has done a tremendous job as well. It was only a matter of time before the Indians would regain their mistic. They have the best coaching hire in the last five years landing Hockman.

VikingsOnAMission

September 30th, 2009
11:11 am

This must be for Metro teams only since Ed Christian is not on the list.

TRE "DUCE" SORRELLS

September 30th, 2009
11:33 am

PEOPLE BE ON THE LOOK OUT FOR TRE SOORRELL ALCOVY’S RB. HE’S ONLY A SOPHMORE AND A TWO YEAR STATER BUT HE’S CHEWING UP YARDAGE AND HAS HIS TEAM 4-1 RECORD RIGHT NOW.. HE HAD ALMOST A 100 YARDS AGAINST TOP RANKED NORTH CLAYTON IN THE 1ST HALF BEFORE CATCHING A STINGER 3RD QUARTER AND HAVING TO LEAVE THE GAME WHICH THEY LOST 13-10.. HE WILL BE A TOP RECRUIT NEXT YEAR…..

Todd Holcomb

September 30th, 2009
11:54 am

VikingsOnAMission: We listed a Lowndes player, Telvin Smith. Do you think Ed Christian is a better defensive player than Telvin?

Some Sense

September 30th, 2009
11:56 am

OMG…three of the five coaches are with private schools. Then add Alan Chadwick, from Marist in AAAA, who is always the Coach of the Year, plus the fact that there are no private schools in AAAAA.

There’s only one solution…call your state representaive…something is surely amiss. Then after you call him/her, call the police, call the GHSA, call President Obama since everyone is not being treated equally.

Finally, open up all the tired old arguments about recruiting and scholarships. These, of course, must be the reasons these schools succeed.

LionsDenKeeper

September 30th, 2009
12:29 pm

Is everybody a Ridge Hater? Where’s Peachtree Ridge? Roby, Okonkor, Stanley, Broadnax, Lombardo, Burnett… all talented athletes!

Darlene Henson

September 30th, 2009
12:44 pm

Sims???? There is another QB in the state that has a better passing percentage than Sims/has more yards passing than Sims/has thrown more touchdown passes than Sims/limited playng time in second half of games, just like Sims/5-0 record just like Sims/and plays AAAAA – Hutson Mason

VikingsOnAMission

September 30th, 2009
1:20 pm

Todd — I think that Lowndes line of scrimmage will win them the state championship this year barring any major injuries. Both lines (o and d)are anchored by Ed, not only as a player, but also as a leader. However, all of your picks are certainly noteworthy. It’s gonna be a wide field to chose from this year.

Bear Fan

September 30th, 2009
1:29 pm

It figures that the AJC would not pick a Griffin player or coach! Guess those Bears will have to show everyone that they are WRONG about Griffin.

the real Old Gold

September 30th, 2009
1:33 pm

What about some love for Coach Hal Lamb at Calhoun? Undefeated including Dalton and Cartersville..

Griffinite

September 30th, 2009
1:46 pm

Bear Fan: It’s a normal occurrence. Griffin always has quality but they don’t get the respect (other than team rankings) they would get if they played in another region. It’s cool, though. Griffin will get theirs in the playoffs.

nomo

September 30th, 2009
1:54 pm

What are some stats for Ogletree?

Jay212033

September 30th, 2009
2:09 pm

Dashay March – QB, Malcolm “Tampa” Mitchell – FS/WR and Jermaine “Tha Freak” Holmes – MLB all from Valdosta will all get serious consideration.

why

September 30th, 2009
3:00 pm

I really don’t understand why colleges are overlooking Brigham from Burke County. If I was him I would start sending tapes to different schools and start putting my highlights on youtube. That is a talented player and I would be really upset if he doesn’t get an offer soon.

Raider Fan

September 30th, 2009
3:06 pm

Yeah, I’d get Coach Hidalgo in here, gotta give him props, losing Burrows before the season even started, and has basically just coached this team to it’s undefeated start.

Kramers2009

September 30th, 2009
3:31 pm

Mike Muschamp is the best coach in the state.. I hate to admit it but its painfully true.. Have you seen Lovett’s roster? They are so small!! and thye dont have any d-1 prospects… But yet every year they seem to be in it. After beating Buford, its cant be denied anymore. Imagine what this guy could do with some real talent!

Lovett is very Lucky to have him.. I dont think it will happen, but its tough to forget that his Bro is the coach in waiting behind Mack Brown at Texas.

BulldawgBite

September 30th, 2009
3:43 pm

lionsdenkeeper are you serious? the only person from ptree ridge should be roby. all those other guys are good players but were talking about the best in the state. Im a big region 7AAAAA fan and collins hills perkins is in another league than stanley. hes going to GT for petes sake. and North Gwinnetts C.J. Uzomah has already gotten scholarships from every major SEC ACC and some big 12 schools like Oklahoma and Texas. Lombardo.. not so much.

SWD FAN

September 30th, 2009
3:43 pm

Its hard to argue with 14 sacks in 4 games. Tod, what stats do you have on Ken Malcome and the kick punt return duo of Marquis Dixon and J Mincy.

govikes01

September 30th, 2009
3:56 pm

Cole Parker for Lowndes has been great so far this season, and of course Ed Christian who should be listed with Telvin Smith!

GO VIKINGS GO!!!!

fitz fibbler

September 30th, 2009
3:57 pm

Fitzgerald thinks there coach walks on water, he’s probably the only guy who could beat the mayor out of a job… he left a couple of years ago for one year i think warner robins, they tossed him out, so fitz built him a 300,000 house new truck … they welcomed him with open arms his last son is grad this year so if tomberlin gets tossed I heard that pruitt is going to valdosta.

Kadosh

September 30th, 2009
4:42 pm

In AAAA, look for defensive standout Isaiah Cook (51), he posted big numbers last year for SWD which led him to be name by several newspapers to 1st team. He has been injured for the last 3 games where he could have posted major numbers but just settle for long snapping and trying to heal his injured ankle. I am looking for Isaiah along with his other bash brother Jabari Carney (53) to post big numbers in the second half of the season, this no knock on teammate TJ Stripling cause he is talented but for a couple of unknowns these two players is going to set the AAAA classification on fire.

rwdekalbfan

September 30th, 2009
5:10 pm

Why do the Griffin bloggers keep whining about not getting respect. Here is the formula: Stop getting eliminated in the playoffs and win the State Title. Now there you have it. If you have not won a State Title in the past 10 years what do you expect. Lowndes, Northside, Tucker and all of the other teams that have won championships in the recent future are the teams that command the most respect. STOP WHINING and win a title.

SERIOUS GRAYSON HATER

September 30th, 2009
5:24 pm

Wow! I’m shocked Coach Conn’s name is not in the spot light. Yea I said it! I just gotta ask while I am on here, why is that Ean Pemberton and Joseph Champaign cannot get scholarships. I mean after all Grayson is suppose to be so phenomenal! Those boys can play great football ( and yes I said that too) Grayson is ranked #2, everyone talks about how great they are, then why are they not getting scholarships? Then you have schools that are 0-4 as of now, they haven’t won a game in years and they are handing out scholarships left and right. Is because maybe they don’t have the grades or the high SAT scores. I would love to know the answer on that one please! oh, and don’t use size as an excuse, because that’s what it is an excuse. Ean is fast as lightning so I’m sure somebody has heard of him and seen him in action. They are “nationally ranked” right???

BulldawgBite

September 30th, 2009
6:39 pm

agreed rwdekalbfan! those fans whine soooooooo much about how nobody thinks they are good or how tough their region is. Dont they notice the teams everyone respects are the ones that win consistantly? its common sense. Nobody respects stephenson and their fans are much the same. they havent done anything with their talent. they need to focus on performing then worry about talking. sounds like their prioritys are out of line. respect isnt given its earned

LettingYouKnow

September 30th, 2009
8:45 pm

SERIOUS GRAYSON HATER, i believe that Joseph Champaign has a 4.0 GPA, correct me if im wrong.

.

September 30th, 2009
8:46 pm

Enter your comments here

.

September 30th, 2009
8:50 pm

Enter your comments her

Carter

September 30th, 2009
8:51 pm

Terrell Brigham is the real DEAL—the best player in the state!!!!! PERIOD!!!! KEEP YOUR EYES ON BURKE CO. FOOTBALL FANS

Todd Holcomb

September 30th, 2009
9:01 pm

Ken Malcome: 86 att, 664 yards, 11 TD

Don’t have stats on Ogletree.

I think Devoursney at Griffin would be a great choice in AAAA at this point.

As far as Coach Conn at Grayson, he’s in the running, but Grayson is playing as expected. McEachern is the real surprise in AAAAA so far. That’s why we picked Hockman.

Lots of ball to be played, though.

Todd Holcomb

September 30th, 2009
9:02 pm

And also a good point to recognize Hutson Mason. I just think Perkins gets more on his own. But Mason has been phenomenal.

Bear4life

September 30th, 2009
9:04 pm

Burke Co. is doing big things this year. T. Brigham is out pf control. He is a complete baller..The best in the state that I have seen…

SanityRules

September 30th, 2009
9:17 pm

Alec Ogletree plays on a team with a tremendous defense so his stats won’t be eye popping. Ask any opposing coach or opposing player about his abilities and they tell you that #39 has to be accounted for and he changes the way you play offense and the plays you call . You have to see him play to appreciate what he does.

SERIOUS GRAYSON HATER

September 30th, 2009
10:11 pm

LettingYouKnow! Well then, if Joseph does have a 4.0 which I don’t know cause I don’t know the kid, then answer me why does he NOT have a scholarship?? I mean after all he is one of the “stars” I am just trying to figure this whole scholarship thing out. If you have a star player with a 4.0 average and he does not get a scholarship it makes me wonder……

BulldawgBite

September 30th, 2009
10:21 pm

I usually dont like haters. but if what you say is true SGH that champaign doesnt have scholarships that is a valid question. hmmm pemberton clearly doesnt have the size though he is 5 foot 4. he would get ran over in college ball.

BulldawgBite

September 30th, 2009
10:22 pm

the shortest ive seen is brandon james at 5 foot 6 inches but then again, i doubt ean pemberton could finish top 8 in the olympic track team

LionsDenKeeper

September 30th, 2009
11:08 pm

BulldawgBite, I know that there are players other than Roby from the Ridge who have received scholarship offers! Even the frickin’ brick house McBurnett. Not sure, but coach seems very selective regarding who gets publicity and who doesn’t. If a kid earns an offer, give him his 15 seconds of fame.

BIG.TEX

October 1st, 2009
12:20 am

Enter your comments here

BIG.TEX

October 1st, 2009
12:24 am

in class 4A I think the DE Q.Brown is a better DE than the DE at SWD Q Brown plays at Tucker High School.cant wait for that match up.

BulldawgBite

October 1st, 2009
6:21 am

? the point of having player and coach of the year is to recognize the best of the best. if every scholorship athlete was on here how would that help fans recognize the top tier of players. notice how there are 5 players for offense and 5 players for defense for each class. if you really think that peachtree ridge deserves to have 6 spots on there then your delusional.

1scout

October 1st, 2009
6:21 am

i totally agree on what have been said about Burke County’s Terrell Brigham and seen. Terrell is a competitor without a doubt, he has gotten faster and stronger by staying in the weight room. In my opinion, i think Brigham would be a dangerous quarterback on any college team. Cause he’s accurate and got the legs that will make defenses mad. The spread gun (no huddle) offense fits him well. Thats only one reason why AAA Burke is 4-0 against AAAA qaulity teams, the Bears are loaded. To any scout or coach that may read this log on at burke.k12.ga.us.com atheletics. And SEE for yourself how Burke County run things. GO BEARS!!!!

EAST PAULDING RULES

October 1st, 2009
6:31 am

Coach Andy Dorsey at Hiram…another McEachern connection being the son of former McEachern great Coach Dorsey. Bet you’ll see him make a jump to a aaaaa Cobb school very soon, but I hope not! It is great to have two great coaches in PC with him and East Coach John Reid. We also have the worst coach I have ever seen in the county at PCHS (Rick Sauls). What a sad joke he has turned that program into and the admin allows him to keep destroying the future. Yes he made the playoffs two years ago, but I hardly think going 3-8 that year makes him a winner!!!

VikingsOnAMission

October 1st, 2009
7:48 am

While not a Grayson fan (of course), please, please, please do not start about the kids’ grades and SAT scores. First of all, it’s not anyone’s business and second of all, these kids are killing themselves week in and week out so us crazy fans get to sit on the blogs and in the stands on Friday nights. No high school kid deserves character or any other type of bashing on a website. We got so sick of hearing it about Greg Reid last year. Stems from pure jealousy!

ms east atlanta

October 1st, 2009
8:16 am

TJ STRIPLING AND Q BROWN ARE AAU BASKETBALL TEAM MATES. SO YES THIS WILL BE A GREAT MATCHUP. GO PANTHERS

Scott

October 1st, 2009
8:29 am

Some Sense…..the point is to recognize the best. Your attitude seems to reflect that if a private school succeeds in GHSA they must be recruiting. I hate to break it to you, but there is plenty of recruiting in public schools, and the recruiting in private schools isn’t near as bad as you may think. These kids have to make the grade as well to be admitted, and not just get by with a 70. Regarding success on the field, remember this…..most of the athletes from the top-tier private schools are incredibly smart and academically driven for success. Combine that with amazing coaches and that translates to success on the field.

Watching

October 1st, 2009
10:05 am

Lets just be sure When we check numbers We go a litte deeper because in AAAA and AAAAA most all those running backs would have a over a 1000 yards if they carried the ball at least a 150 or more times and ONLY 9 TDs. those numbers are Ok but not what we call Player of the Year that not a stand out just an over worked work-horse. Gerogia have some boys getting the job done.

On a good note their are alot of great picks on her thanks Todd

Watching

October 1st, 2009
10:08 am

Send that one before I was finish had to run excuse the typos.

Decatur 4 Life

October 1st, 2009
10:15 am

SERIOUS GRAYSON HATER

How does size not matter? This is football where size at the next level always matter. The people that don’t have size have something else to go with it. Look at Trindin Holliday at LSU, although very small to play he’s a track athlete and runs a 4.2 or 4.3 40. Pemberton is fast and quick but I don’t think he’s running a 4.2 in the 40. Ean will get a scholarship somewhere but size always makes a difference.

SERIOUS GRAYSON HATER

October 1st, 2009
3:37 pm

VikingsOnAMission: I wasn’ t trying to bash anyone! I know these kids work their butts off every week THAT is why I was wondering why they are not getting a scholarship. I am not the one that wrote the article last week about Joseph Champaing not having any scholarship offers and that his parents are helping recruit him. That article got me to thinking why is he not getting one. One of the best players on the team, that is why I mentioned his grades. I have a kid, I know, you don’t make the grades then you don’t get a scholarship, and SAT’s are just as important, but that was not my question. Well I might have found my answer today. The schools that are 0-4 that are dishing out scholarships may have the best athletes, BUT not the best team! So with that being said, I guess Grayson has the best team ,but not the best athletes. I do hope he gets a scholarship and I hope littleman gets one too. End of story!

Decatur 4 Life – Thanks for the clarification.

SportsFan31313

October 1st, 2009
5:36 pm

Todd Holcomb,

Do you think that the State has enough schools that can support a true Classification of AAAAAA? If so, do you think that GHSA will add a new Classification of AAAAAA?