High school football is returning to the Georgia Dome on Friday and Saturday as the Great American Football Classic, an event started in Indianapolis, is coming to Atlanta.
There are two games Friday and four on Saturday. For many of the 12 schools, it will be their first games in the Dome.
“First off, it’s against South Gwinnett, which is the oldest rivalry in Gwinnett County, so playing this game on that stage is big,” said Central Gwinnett coach Todd Wofford, whose team can start 4-0 for the first time since 1984. “Secondly, for the kids to experience playing there was something I wanted for them. I think Central and South are just a couple of the teams in Gwinnett that have never been there. It’s just a great opportunity for the team, the school and the city of Lawrenceville in general.”
It also will be the first Georgia Dome appearances for Clayton County schools Lovejoy, Morrow and Drew. The other seven schools have played in the Dome in state semifinals or finals, including Sandy Creek, which plays Drew on Saturday. Sandy Creek won its 2009 and 2010 state titles at the Dome.
Sandy Creek coach Chip Walker believes getting acclimated to the Dome is valuable for those that might play there again, in particular his sophomore quarterback, Cole Garvin.
“Our goal is to get back there in November,” Walker said. “We’ve got guys like Cole who get an opportunity to get experience in there. He held for extra points in there last year, but taking snaps [as quarterback] is a little different than holding.”
The event organizer, iHigh.com, has done similar domed-stadium events in Indianapolis and St. Louis and will broadcast each game on its Web site.
5 p.m. – Lovejoy vs. Morrow
8 p.m. – Carver (Columbus) vs. LaGrange
11 a.m. – Creekside vs. Mount Zion (Jonesboro)
2 p.m. – Drew vs. Sandy Creek
5 p.m. – Westminster vs. Greater Atlanta Christian
8 p.m. – Central Gwinnett vs. South Gwinnett
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