Lowndes-Camden headlines a loaded second round

I can’t remember a better second round in the highest classification.

Lowndes-Camden County goes without saying. Playing a tougher schedule week in, week out, will help Lowndes, so I’m picking the Vikes on the road. I know Camden beat Northside last season in the same second round, but that was when Camden was the better team. This year, Lowndes is the better team.

Other amazin’ games in AAAAA –

MLK vs. Newnan (Mack Brown vs. Alec Ogletree)

Woodstock at North Gwinnett (I like both these teams a long and think either could’ve made the semis with another draw)

Roswell at Grayson (Is Pemberton hurt? How is Champaign? Good upset pick game here. Cool story about the backup QB at Roswell throwing the winning TD pass in OT. Who will cover Chris Boyd?)

South Gwinnett at Lassiter (Can anybody stop Hutson Mason?)

Colquitt County at Stephenson (Good news for Jags is that they get to see the spread offense before having to face Lassiter. Bad news is that they might not live to see next week. As Ron Gartrell said to me today, “We have so much trouble with South Georgia teams.’’)

Other stuff …

Team of the week: Liberty County. I really love teams that turn things around. Best win in program history against LaGrange last week. … I would’ve given the same kudos to Chattooga, btw.

Now, let’s discuss Carver of Columbus. OK, you beat Burke County 28-21. Burke is the best No. 4 team in the state, but still. Is this what a state-championship team would do to Burke? Is it too late to jump on the Gainesville bandwagon? I’m only now starting to realize how good Gainesville’s defense is. Carver didn’t want me on their bandwagon in the first place, but I’m curious to see how those two teams do this week.

In AAAA, it’s two teams – Griffin, SWD.

In AAA, it’s two – Carver, Gainesville.

In AA, it’s three – Fitz, Calhoun, Buford.

In A, it’s two – Wesleyan, Twiggs.

338 comments Add your comment

SanityRules

November 15th, 2009
5:25 pm

What does Coach Gartrell mean when he says he has so much trouble with south Georgia teams? Is it better coaching, better athletes or what is it? If he was my head coach and said that, I would be worried . That’s loser talk. Sorry Stephenson, your coach is waving the white flag already.

TRUE BLUE

November 15th, 2009
6:49 pm

No, he just telling the truth from previously experience, but he knows where he stand this year.This team love it when people doubt them. Todd Holcomb , we already know where we stand with you. You had a chance to make up but spend your entire column on a player that was suspend because he got in a fight and you were suppose to write about the game. Your main topic was about GARRISON SMITH of Douglass High School. We at STEPHENSON don’t care if you don’t like our team. Hell if anybody is overrated that 11-0 give them a hand clap TODD. If you think for once that LASSITER will get past SOUTH GWINNETTI with no DEFENSE. You better think twice. HUTSON MASON is a good quarterback but he about to see some fast and better defense in the playoff.

highschool football fan

November 15th, 2009
7:05 pm

Can’t wait until Friday night. Camden vs Lowndes has the potential for being a real shoot-out. Both defenses are too good for the other to run up and down the field. Expect a couple of break away plays, and maybe a couple of mid field drives. Special teams will probably be the difference. One Camden fan “…..BEAR”, said they should give the state championship to Lowndes after watching them last week…..I think he was probably being a little sarcastic…Should be a good though. Goodluck to both teams.

Viking Girl

November 15th, 2009
8:02 pm

Not to underestimate or disrespect Camden because I know they are the defending AAAAA State Champions but I just feel Lowndes has the better team this year. I don’t think the score will be as close as people think. I’m picking Lowndes by a couple of scores. Go Vikings!

E!

November 15th, 2009
8:27 pm

Hey, SanityRules, I don’t think Coach Gartrell is waving any white flag. Like TRUE BLUE said, I think he is just saying that in the past, SHS has had trouble with schools from South Georgia and that is a well documented fact. However, this is not the same SHS Jaguars that many have seen in the past. This team “finishes” and finishes very well.

I expect this to be a good game but by no means should anyone think that was loser talk. One thing is for sure, we will know for sure, one way or another, in about 5 days or so.

LET’S GO JAGUARS!!!

SanityRules

November 15th, 2009
8:44 pm

E!, you have to have a 100% positive attitude and always believe that this team is not last year’s and you will get the job done. If you don’t have that mindset you will surely go down in defeat. Frankly,I’m tired of these arrogant south Georgia bloggers and we know what we got to do to shut them up. So Stephenson, handle your business.

dawg4life

November 15th, 2009
8:54 pm

where’s the love for jackson in AAA,don’t count us out.

Mark

November 15th, 2009
9:00 pm

The Northside-WR defense makes them a canidate in any game they play!

Colquitt County Fans

November 15th, 2009
9:00 pm

We Love You Colquitt County Packers Guys go take care of South Georgia Business like we did back in the 90’s.
GO PACK GO, Moultrie Georgia!!!!!

Gwinnett Fan

November 15th, 2009
9:06 pm

I have a bracket question for you. Even though they changed the brackets they still do not seem quite right.

They have corrected the seeds so that the right seeds meet each other in the appropriate rounds but they have not properly aligned the regions.

The brackets have been set up on a three year rotation. A #1 seed will play a different #4 seed from the three other north or south regions in the first round each year.

Year 1 Region 1 vs region 2
Year 2 Region 1 vs region 3
Year 3 Region 1 vs region 4

It can be assumed that if the higher or favored team wins in the first round each year, that the second round match ups will be a #1 seed vs a #2 seed. The second round should also be similar to the first round in that each year you should play a #2 seed from a different region each year.

You should not play a #2 seed from the same region two years in a row. Camden County has been a #1 seed from region 3 for several years in a row. Last year they had to play Northside Warner Robins (region 1 #2 seed) in the second round. This year they have to play Lowndes (region 1 #2 seed) in the second round.

This should not happen if the brackets were set up properly. I believe they should be playing the winner of the Region 4 #2 seed vs the Region 1 #3 seed. In this case the winner was Colquitt County.

Can you please speak to the GHSA and get a clarification why this did not happen?

Thanks

Todd Holcomb

November 15th, 2009
9:13 pm

I think Coach Gartrell is making sure his kids know their history so they’ll realize Colquitt County is no joke. It’s the same thing South Georgia coaches do when their playing a team that might not be a household name to a 17-year-old. Coach G. knows what he’s doing, and he’s as confident as he needs to be.

True Blue: Fair comment, bu there’s the story on that … For the final game of the regular season, I thought a good story would be the experience of a great player on a bad team playing his final high school game. What’s it like to toil for a 1-9 team? I spoke with Garrison the day before the game. He didn’t tell me he was suspended. He was embarrassed. I didn’t know he serving a sit-out penalty until I got there. Then, Garrison talked candidly about the suspension and his season. It’s not my job to decide whether a person is deserving of a story. My job is to write what’s interesting. Plus, he paid more than most for the suspension because if it were anybody else, it would have gone unreported. : ) In Smith’s defense, I found him to be well-spoken and likeable. I’m sorry for him that I picked the wrong time to visit.

Callitlikeitis

November 15th, 2009
9:25 pm

I am picking the Vikings to beat Camden County.

Their is only one dominate team in Class AA and it is Fitzgerald. And the northern part of Georgia will see real soon what south Georgia already knows. Buford is not strong enough this year to complete with Fitz. Calhoun can compete with Fitz but depends on just several players to win and is not a complete dominate team.

Stephenson has enough good players to complete with Colquitt Co. but I question Stephenson’s game scheming and stragedy (coaching). They will be up against one of the best coaches in the Nation (Former Hoover Coach Rush Propst). Stephenson will have to defend the whole football field and Colquitt offense does not huddle. Stephenson’s defense is athletic enough to defend this spread offense but can they hold up late in the 3rd and 4th quarter due to the no huddling offense. I saw Colquitt beat Lassiter during a scrimmage this year and Lassiter had a very hard time defending Colquitt’s offense.

viking lover

November 15th, 2009
9:27 pm

I have to say that I think Grayson’s chances to do well are a little suspect. To be ranked #1 in the state and only beat a fourth seeded team by one touchdown does not bode well for them. I will be suprised to see them in the hunt after this week. Lowndes looked a little scary in the first half against East Coweta, but the second half was all Vikings. As long as the Plowboys play that type of football, no one will beat them. Vikings by 21 points.

TRUE BLUE

November 15th, 2009
9:32 pm

TODD, you went to the DOUGLASS and STEHENSON game to cover the game not interview GARRISON SMITH. You could interviewed him FRIDAY morning or THURSDAY evening. If you read the newspaper SATURDAY morning and saw the article its was a nice article, but his article was bigger than the game. You had a small article in the metro scores, but covered the game and wrote big article on Garrison Smith. Everybody else wrote nice articles about the game they cover that night. They had game stats and everything.

spwhite

November 15th, 2009
9:47 pm

Gwinnett Fan- havent you figured it out? Its a conspiracy to try and keep Camden county from winning the state every year. We have an unfair advantage because we play in the weakest region, we have an unfair advantage because we have soo many players, so and and so forth. So to make it fair for the other schools we get the toughest draw!! All of this, of course, is said in jest. :-)
Lets just play some ball!!!!

Todd Holcomb

November 15th, 2009
9:54 pm

TRUE BLUE: You’re misunderstanding what my assignment is each week. I went to the Douglass-Stephenson game to interview him, not to cover the game. That’s what I do each week. I write about something that takes place at a game that isn’t the game itself. In this case, it was a star player’s final game and his experience of it. I also went to the MLK-Stephenson game, but I wrote about DeKalb’s policy of revenue sharing, not who won or lost. Last week, I wrote about Rick Tomberlin and his firing at Valdosta and how fans at the game felt about it. I did not cover the Valdosta-Newnan game except for a few sentences. My purpose in going to the Stephenson-Douglass game was to interview Garrison Smith. If the AJC were going to cover only five or six games, one of those games would not involve Douglass, a 1-9 team. I was there for another story.

Todd Holcomb

November 15th, 2009
9:55 pm

Not sure if Grayson’s tight victory over Marietta means much or not. Grayson had over 300 yards rushing and held Marietta to about 3 first downs. Marietta ran back a kick for a TD. Grayson was never in any real danger. Bigger question for Grayson is injuries – Ean Pemberton and Joe Champaign have injury issues. I hope they’re well soon.

keel

November 15th, 2009
10:01 pm

well he told u TRUE BLUE

keel

November 15th, 2009
10:02 pm

no love 4 clark central they will beat down SWD

Panola Road's Finest

November 15th, 2009
10:04 pm

Hey True Blue chill out. Let’s talk about Stephenson, MLK which might lose badly this weekend, and SWD doing well in the playoffs. Let’s put the doubters in check once and for all because I promise you there is alot of them out there in regards to Dekalb teams. Secondly, tell Gartrell not to say things that can be taken as weakness. I am sure that Colquitt County is not coming up here expecting to lose on Friday.

Third, why are Stephenson fans so sensitive?

TRUE BLUE

November 15th, 2009
10:06 pm

CALLINLIKEITIS,Show STEPHENSON some repect when you try an compare them to a team. LASSITER don’t play defense goto ga.prepcountry.com and you will that gave up over 30 points in 4 games and over 25 in 2 games. LASSITER is giving up 21.0 compared to STEPHENSON 5.0. STEPHENSON in the last 3 years has never had 20 points scored on them can any other 5a team say that, I probably can go back further. You must don’t know STEPHENSON HIGH SCHOOL, because that what they are known for DEFENSE, but now they have a offense to go along with their GREAT DEFENSE. DOME BOUND BABY WHETHER YOU LIKE IT OR NOT DOME BOUND

SouthGARules

November 15th, 2009
10:06 pm

Todd: It’s not only Hutson Mason that has to worry about being stopped, but Kent Rollins is no slouch. He is on the verge of breaking some of David Greene’s records at South Gwinnett & from what I’ve heard, some of the Brookwood folks wish he was their starting QB. I imagine the scoreboard will get a serious workout. Also, I know Alec Ogletree gets all the pub, but Zander is a good player in his own right as is #51 for Newnan. I guess you are a little underwhelmed with the Brookwood-Peachtree Ridge & Union Grove-NSWR matchups. Why Brookwood & Peachtree Ridge want to win Friday night is beyond me. They will have to go to the Mecca of the state, McConnell-Talbott Stadium and meet the greatest team of all time to get a massive beatdown from. I’m sure Bill Ballard & Mark Crews are wringing their hands trying to figure out how to lose so they will not have that embarrassment on their resumes. LOL

HSFootballover12

November 15th, 2009
10:09 pm

whoa wait why is everyone counting out tucker and sandy creek they got a big game in 4-A this week?

inthatrenches (from the sunbelt conference)

November 15th, 2009
10:13 pm

Early predictions are of course coming from people who are not playing the game it is hard to measure heart, emotion, a fluke bounce, a early game fumble,an adjustment at halftime??? Here is my early predictions:
Lassiter vs S. Gwinnett- Lassiter by 3
N.Gwinnett vs Woodstock- NG by a 8
Peachtree ridge vs Brookwood- Pridge by 10
Grayson vs Roswell- Grayson by 10
Stephenson vs Colquitt- Stephenson by 14
Northside WR vs UnionGrove- Northside WR by 6
Newnan vs MLK- Newnan by a TD Good defensive game
Camden vs Lowndes- the most evenly matched 2nd round game “possibly ever’ #1 and 2 in offensive points and 5 & 7 in defensive pts allowed The home team by 1

RHS

November 15th, 2009
10:17 pm

Know what is wrong with Pemberton, what is wrong with Champaign? Two great players!

SouthGARules

November 15th, 2009
10:20 pm

RHS: Champaign tore his ACL in the Brookwood game. He is playing with a brace on his knee.

RHS

November 15th, 2009
10:24 pm

Playing with a torn ACL? All I have to say is what a warrior. That boy has a motor.

robert

November 15th, 2009
10:25 pm

Todd. Answer the lady’s ? from above. Why is Camen playing the same #2 seed from the same region two years in a row. I thought the seeding and alternating the regions you are bracketed against each yaer was supposed to eliminate this. Please answer this for me and the lady and forget about Garrison smith and your story.

inthatrenches (from the sunbelt conference)

November 15th, 2009
10:28 pm

Todd I think you and the AJC do a good job that video with Coach Williams and the article was a moving story….. I hope you guy’s continue with what you do Life happens sports is what we enjoy along the way…..I also hope you guy’s follow Greenville and the story of his terminal disease I had a friend pass from this and it only gets worst from here his family has my prayers and many others on this blog I’m sure…

Grayson Student

November 15th, 2009
10:37 pm

u have questions i have answers… pemberton had a stinger and nothing more… i have talked to a lot of the players and it was just a stinger. champaign is fine but limited action i would guess for friday, dont forget we have our starting tight end coming back friday. Roswell has a couple of favorable matchups but that quarterback will have a hard time in his first road start at a rocking britt moody field… we will see

Todd Holcomb

November 15th, 2009
10:44 pm

Gwinnett Fan:

I’ve studied it, and as best I can tell, the GHSA should use six-year cycles if the GHSA’s goal is to ensure that each region champion is seeded to face another region’s #2 seed exactly twice every six years.

However, the GHSA has not been using six-year cycles. It has been using cycles that I can’t follow logically. The Region 3 champion has been seeded to play the Region 1 runner-up in 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009. …

So while perhaps that shouldn’t happen, it has happened that way consistently since 2002 (except for 2004 and 2007). So the GHSA is being consistent in maintaining the pattern that I’m not smart enough to decipher for you.

Todd Holcomb

November 15th, 2009
10:48 pm

And further, I’ll ask the GHSA about it this week and report back.

re: Sandy Creek, Tucker … Logically, I shouldn’t write out half the teams that I did, but my gut feel is that neither can win it. Sandy Creek has had many good teams before but never a really deep run. As for Tucker, I can’t think of a team that’s been beaten soundly twiceby teams in its own classification that came back to win a state title. I can think of a team that got beat 38-0 and came back to win a state title, so maybe there’s hope.

inthatrenches (from the sunbelt conference)

November 15th, 2009
10:48 pm

Robert Gwinnettfan spwhite

It does not matter where you play them if you are championship caliber you move on….YOU PLAY THE TEAM IN FRONT OF YOU! as a region 4 supporter we face region 1 every other year we cannot wish away Region 1 there is a 4 and 1 in every bracket you to have a bracket with each region represented just MAN UP and play ball If Camden was ever a 2 seed then they would not have a problem with it..

Warhawk

November 15th, 2009
10:53 pm

TODD:

Please answer this question. Why does the GSHA rotate only the 1-4 and 5-8 Regions. It would make more sense to me that they would rotate all 8 regions. There is to many good teams in Gwinnett and in the deep south that those team beat each other before the finals. I know that travel has a lot to do with it, but this is 2009 and it it is the State Playoffs. You would think that the GSHA would want the two best teams meeting in the finals, and not just North vs South.

Callitlikeitis

November 15th, 2009
10:54 pm

True Blue, I happen to like Stephenson and usually go to 2 to 3 of their games a year. I have been to two of thier games this year thus far and think that they have a great team. Also, I travel thru out the state and see teams from north to south georgia. I have seen Colquitt County play too and they are a great team also. Stephenson has never faced the type of offense that they are about to face this week. Haven seen Lassiter play this year, I agree with you that Stephenson defense is better. My main points that I was trying make is can Stephenson coach a good enough game and out coach the Colquitt County coaches to a Stephenson victory??? Let’s face it, Stephenson’s offense is not very creative and they have been running the same stuff for years. Colquitt Co. runs a pro set spread offense that forces the defender to defend the entire football field and many players touch the ball too.Can Stephenson’s defense hold up to the rapid fire offense of Colquitt late in the 3rd and 4th quarters. Unlike you I have no affiliation to any team, I call-it-like-it-is.

Dekalb Fan

November 15th, 2009
10:57 pm

I truely believe the Stephenson Jaguars will prevail on Friday night. We are dome bound this year!!!!!!!Shout out to the entire team and coaching staff as well as the parents of the jaguars!!!!!!!!!

coffee fan

November 15th, 2009
10:59 pm

where will lowndes game be, will it be on tv? it should.

Two best teams in State , both should be playing in Finals for Championship but under present system that will not happen. One will go home. I’ll take the Vikings by 7. Go Lowndes!!!

C-town

November 15th, 2009
11:03 pm

Dear Todd, Please Jump on the G-Ville bandwagon. Carver had to play a # 1 seed in Burke CO. Burke Co QB T.Bingham is like Jordan, he can get hot and put a team on its back…….But Carver still won. That win just makes us better. Who has G-Ville played this year? Its Cup-Cake city every week! Carver will be there at the end. …TODD make I .Crowell AAA Player of the Year…you need to jump on that Bandwagon!!!

spwhite

November 15th, 2009
11:04 pm

inthatrenches (from the sunbelt conference) – Hey we are not complaining here in Camden. We want to play the best and I think most everyone agrees that region 1 is the best! Doesnt matter to us if its 1st round or for the championship.Like I said in my last post, lets just play some ball!!! Im ready to see the 2 masters of the wing t go at it!!!!

inthatrenches (from the sunbelt conference)

November 15th, 2009
11:12 pm

spwhite.
Your team and the team you are facing have averaged 44 and 45 pts per game that is 1 and 2 in all the 16 teams remaining your defenses are allowing 9 and 10 pts per game that is 5 and 7 in the 16 teams remaining I figured Home field advantage gives Camden a slight edge?

LizDawg

November 15th, 2009
11:14 pm

I look for Camden, St. Pius, Gainesville, and Roswell to win.

A Fan

November 15th, 2009
11:17 pm

Todd,
Where is the A love? Wesleyan v Bowdon and Holy Innocents’ v Bremen

inthatrenches (from the sunbelt conference)

November 15th, 2009
11:23 pm

Sorry A fan us Rabid AAAAA fans seem to make the High school juices flow…… got to get some more A friends on here….. or learn to talk AAAAA football make a prediction or a proclaimation about your team to get a response…..

Yo

November 15th, 2009
11:39 pm

If I play Berkmar and beat them 14-0 and your team plays Grayson and beats the 10-7 I guess that means my team has a better defense according to the logic of some the people posting on here.
Not calling any names as I don’t desire to hurt anybodies feelings. I suppose by that same logic I must also have a better offense also.

Yo

November 15th, 2009
11:41 pm

Make that “anybody’s feelings. I suppose by that same logic I must also have a better offense.”

spwhite

November 15th, 2009
11:46 pm

inthatrenches (from the sunbelt conference -The problem that we have is that we really havent been tested since the first 3 games of the season. Of course its no big secret that we are in a really weak region. From what I can tell Lowndes is a really strong 2nd half team. They have put up numbers on some very good teams. While we on the other hand have put numbers up on some really weak teams. We have been able to score very well in all but the first game of the season and that was against Grayson in the dome. Camden is used to playing in high profile games like Grayson and Hoover so we should be ready for the challange. Right now I think it is going to be a toss up. Our senior quarterback quit week before last but that actually may have helped the team. our starting quarterback now is a junior and has been playing very well all season. He also seems to be more versatile, blocking, throwing, running, etc. i was suprised that we scored as many points as we did against newton, if you look at thier record their losses were all pretty close and against some good teams. Theres no denying that Lowndes is the master of the wing t. If anyone knows how to stop it, its Lowndes. Last year when Camden was running the wing t I just could not follow the ball 80 percent of the time. This year Ive been able to follow the ball most of the time. Dont know if that means anyting or not. I expect Lowndes to bring 1 heck of a crowd with them so Chris Gillman stadium should be rocking!!!!!!!

Todd Holcomb

November 15th, 2009
11:57 pm

Warhawk: Two teams from one region still can meet in the finals. It’s not a North-South thing except in the first two rounds. But the the north and south regions are separated in the first two rounds is travel, as you suspected. Most schools (principals, superintendents) want to play nearby regions in the first round. You’re never going to see Dalton playing Brunswick in the first round.

A Fan: For the second round, I just think the best handful of matchups are in AAAAA. That’s due to depth in that class.

C-town: Burke was not a No. 1 seed. … But I am eager for Gainesville to play a really good opponent. Good point about that.

coffee: You can’t blame the system for Camden & Lowndes playing in the second round. If they’re the best two teams in the state, then blame Lowndes for losing to Northside. That’s why Lowndes is in this predicament.

Todd Holcomb

November 15th, 2009
11:59 pm

Left a word out up there …

The REASON the north and south regions are separated is travel. …

Yo

November 15th, 2009
11:59 pm

Camden do you have a grass or turf field? I know it is relatively new, but I couldn’t tell by the pictures
on your web site whether it was natural grass of turf.

Region A

November 16th, 2009
12:04 am

Yada yada yada, I am on here every day and I never see anything about class A….. A Fan, I agree those two games are going to be some head turners haha.