Class AAAAAA blog: Grayson … Love ‘em or hate ‘em?

When a school wins its first state championship, people give that team its due. When that team starts dominating the headlines, the goodwill begins to evaporate.

Mickey Conn built Grayson from scratch in 2000, and years of work and patience paid off in 2011 with a championship. On Friday, Grayson plays Miami Central in a game that will televised on ESPN and discussed nationwide. That’s because Grayson is ranked No. 1 by ESPN, while Miami Central is No. 1 in USA Today. Georgia has never had a game played quite like that.

Meanwhile, Robert Nkemdiche is the No. 1 college recruit in the country. He’s got his own Wikipedia page. There’s no more famous high school football player in the country.

Which brings me to this –

Are you pulling for Grayson on Friday? Is this a case of Georgia fans pulling for one of their own, or is there a growing faction of those who are sick of Grayson’s new-found fame and want to see them knocked down a notch?

Which brings me to this -

What are the most hated teams in Class AAAAAA? I’d say the state, but this is the AAAAAA blog.

Is it Grayson? Colquitt County? Valdosta? Brookwood?

In 2011, I would’ve said Stephenson is the most polarizing team in Georgia. The Jags dropped down.

Who is the most polarizing team in the big class now?

I don’t think it’s Grayson – yet. As a fan of Georgia high school football, I’m backing the Rams this week against Central.

How about you?

42 comments Add your comment

Beach_ Bum

August 28th, 2012
9:46 am

Love da Rams …
Hopefully all of Georgia loves them for at least this weekend, as they represent us all on Friday night.


August 28th, 2012
9:55 am

I’m pulling for Grayson Fr. nite…..I don’t have a problem with Grayson getting all this attention…They deserve it…..I only dislike a team the week Camden plays them….I don’t discredit any team for geo. location, great foootball is played all over this state…


August 28th, 2012
10:06 am



August 28th, 2012
10:43 am

I can easily answer that question on the most hated team in AAAAAA: THE CAMDEN COUNTY WILDCATS! Just go to every blog on here and you will read something negative about Camden. I don’t care what sport sit’s never positive.


August 28th, 2012
10:47 am

I think Grayson will be upset in the playoffs,not making it to the Georgia Dome


August 28th, 2012
12:12 pm

I’m pulling for Grayson. But I just have a feeling they will get caught slippin..!!


August 28th, 2012
12:57 pm

I’ll be at the Grayson game Friday, and I’m a father of three Brookwood graduates. We love playing Grayson, great spirit there. Brookwood lost a heartbreaker there last year. Mickey Conn has spoken at our church. I find the assertion that one might hate a State Champion to be assinine. However, due to fact that this is the AJC, a sophomoric, silly,and demeaning assertion is too often simply par for the course. Dummy up, and get somebody writing columns or making headlines that doesn’t insult the intelligence of high school students, their parents, and their fans. If I was the AJC, I’d remove this column immediately, as it demeans the newspaper, Such a display of an elementary school mentality is beneath contempt in a society where hate is otherwise considered by the AJC to be a crime.


August 28th, 2012
1:00 pm

I have to agree with CAMDEN1981 followed by Lowndes Vikings. But I hope that Grayson win big against Miami. Unfortunately, whoever wins this year will be “disliked” until next year.

Titletown USA

August 28th, 2012
1:30 pm

GwinnettDad, wouldn’t it be easier for you to just not click the button and come into this particular thread if it bothers you that much? I don’t think Todd and the AJC are encouraging silly behavior with this, I think it is just a part of modern popular youth culture to view “hate” or “hater” as a term that really implies that someone is jealous because of success/attention and not a personal, deep desire to harm or destroy someone. Fan rivalry and related aspects are at the heart of football in this country and really what allows it to transcend the field. Our Winnersville classic is one of the most special events because of this, but ultimately it brings people together, not tear them apart.

I will be rooting for Grayson as I root for Region 1 teams when they are not playing the Vikings or Wildcats.

Titletown USA

August 28th, 2012
1:32 pm

I think people hated on Camden because of the regular season schedule, with them being in Region 1 now that should not be a problem anymore. I know a lot of people on this blog hate NSWR…for obvious reasons.

ole ram

August 28th, 2012
2:09 pm

just sayin from watchin the rams for 8 years–rams come with your AAAAAA game from the first whistle till the last whistle–100% each side of the ball every single play—these FLA boys will bring a hurricane force to be certain with the pass and the run–they have equal amount of fast big beef on the hoof—just sayin who wants it more


August 28th, 2012
2:30 pm

IMO, Georgia HS football is among the best in the nation! On Friday, Grayson will be representing ALL of Georgia HS football, so if you think GHSF is best, you should be supporting Grayson! :-)


August 28th, 2012
2:32 pm

Guess it should be pretty obvious who I’m for! ;-) I’ll be there pulling for my Rams!!! I don’t know that I “hate” any team. I might not like the actions of a team or a few of its players but that is not hate. I’m not real fond of supporters that refuse to hear anything less than favorable about their team. I have to remind myself that the Rams aren’t perfect and be willing to listen when someone brings a well thought out argument to the discussion. Wild accusations with no backing, nope don’t tolerate those well but a decent discussion, I’m in.

@Titletown USA – I agree with you. Camden has a great program but it was a little hard to take some of the chest thumping given the schedule they played. Totally not their fault. They tended to represent themselves well in the playoffs the years they didn’t outright win. This year should shut down those complaints.

Rush is a polarizing figure as a coach and I think that leads to the complaints about the Packers. Almost all other cases I can think of are more the fans making outrageous claims than anything the team really does.


August 28th, 2012
2:36 pm

By the way, if it were another team in the same situation you better believe I’d be pulling for Team Georgia!!!


August 28th, 2012
2:43 pm

i hope grayson beats miami central………..but i will not be pulling for them to make the finals…lol. They are going to be tough……until you see it in person…… really dont understand what kind of an impact robert nkemdiche has on both sides the ball………..when he leaves next year just him being gona alone will make grayson take a step back………that is how good this kid is………..on person will not bring him down………one person will try and get run over in the process……..

TJ Morris

August 28th, 2012
6:00 pm

Hope grayson whoops central shows that georgia high school football is the best in the country.


August 28th, 2012
6:41 pm

Welcome to the Limelight Grayson!! Can you guys handle all the attention and publicity?? Don’t get on National Television and choke!! Rep GA. to the fullest…

wildcat fan

August 28th, 2012
8:01 pm


Columbia Blue

August 28th, 2012
8:59 pm

I am a Camden Fan and I can tell you that Grayson has a great team. I wish them the best of luck this Friday night vs Miami Central. Our Wildcats will continue to work hard, stay humble and play as hard as we can. Our goal is to get better each week. We have a lot of work to get done before this Friday vs Ocala Vanguard.


August 28th, 2012
9:05 pm

I will be pulling for Grayson. They will be representing our state and i hope they show FL just how it goes down in GA. I will also be pulling for all of our other teams playing out of state teams too GOODLUCK TO ALL!!!


August 28th, 2012
9:49 pm

If the coaching staff can keep the focus on the game and not the hype as well as they did last season we will be ok.


August 28th, 2012
11:12 pm

I am now going on hiatus until we play Colquit. Upon my return, I will re-focus and start the countdown until week ten. Hopefully, I will be among those with a horse in the race


August 28th, 2012
11:32 pm

Taped the game and what a smash mouth in your face game the

CCHS Wildcats: What a butt whipping U guys put on PRHS, after that shellacking, they did not know which side of the divide they were on( they sit on the Eastern Continental Divide) my take, they don’t want to go to the Atlantic anytime soon.. U guys looked fast, aggressive, and the type of smashmouth football good teams are made of……U guys (fans)had better get ready come December when y’all visit Hotlanta again for the real trophy …good luck btn now and then…..Wolfie


August 29th, 2012
6:52 am

I don’t think that folks hate Grayson as much as it may seem. I think the issue is the rapid jump onto the national scene after 1 title. Most of this is due to the #1 recruit in the country, and the return of 10 starters on defense. Even though their offense lost some quality players, the expectation is that they will run the table in AAAAAA. From what I saw on saturday, they have some work to do to run the table. Hopefully it was first game gitters, yes they won 31-21, but that game was closer than the final score. Don’t think that #1 can carry the offense and be effective on defense for a whole game for 15 games. Hopefully they play well friday against Central. Camden was able to match Central’s speed, even though they were smaller up front than Central. Central runs a spread with speed all over the field, and they play fast. It remains to be seen. If Grayson can generate offense and keep Central’s offense off of the field it will be a competitive game. If Grayson get’s into a shootout with Central, don’t think Grayson can win that game. A smash mouth game favors Grayson. Go with what you know. Get it done Rams.


August 29th, 2012
7:35 am

Go RAMS!! Love’m Great team, Great fans, Great coaches, Great players!!

Call me when u get to DBL Digits

August 29th, 2012
8:18 am

Grayson has to matter to be hated. They are a good local story atm. One state championship is nice, but we can hardly appoint the flavor- of- the- month the new king of 6A football after one lucky season. Build a body of work, Grayson, then MAYBE u can be in the same conversation with Region1.


August 29th, 2012
9:29 am

LOL, DBL Digits…don’t understand your condescension toward Grayson, or all of the other teams in this state who don’t have more than 9 state titles. I guess you’re saying Valdosta is the only worthy one to be called “king” in this state…and that it’s not that hard to win a state title, an opinion that diminishes the strength of the game played in Georgia. Valdosta is “king” historically speaking…but has not won a title since 1998, or even sniffed one since 2003.

Your perspective will change one day…and your attitude along with it. Probably about the time you get out of high school.

Lambert Longhorn

August 29th, 2012
10:21 am

As a team that is entering AAAAAA, we are excited for our new challenge. Difficult – definitely; will we get better by playing better competition – definitely.

I appreciate and respect programs that produce results on and off the field. We know Grayson, Valdosta, Lowndes (to name a few) all produce great results on the field and hopefully off. These programs make the state of Georgia programs better.

Go Longhorns!

68 viking

August 29th, 2012
11:55 am

one would think that if u r a true fan of the game and u r loyal to ur team and state that one would be pulling for the rams… heck I will be pulling for them. even though we have some bad blood between us lol

Titletown USA

August 29th, 2012
3:45 pm

I just heard on the local sports station that ex-Lowndes star Greg Reid has torn his ACL at a Valdosta state practice….bad situation for this young man. You never want to see someone hurt but this kid has backed himself into a real corner…no pun intended.


August 29th, 2012
4:38 pm

Central has the “skilled athletes,” Grayson has the team. Shouldn’t be close if Mickey has done his usual scouting job. Central way overrated. Grayson-Manatee a much better GA-FL match this year. But wait ’til you see that Central crowd, if they make the trip!

Pack Fan

August 29th, 2012
4:57 pm

@ CAMDEN1981: your reading on the wrong places.. that new sports forum folks are talking mighty highly about camden!!! I read there that the some of the members are picking them to end with a number 1 rank in Reg. 1.


August 29th, 2012
5:52 pm

Grayson’s rise to stardom was not because of a this state title. Check the history books over the last 6 years………First of all, argubally they play in the best county for HS football in GA. check the state champions in that County………

Second, They have been nationally ranked for 3 or 4 years, and they have beaten all the top teams in GA (few times twice)

On the real, GA is the BEST for HS football and I think playing and winning in this state means ALOT! Lowndes, Camden, Colquit, Valdosta, NG, Brookwood, McEachern, Walton, Budford…….etc
should never drop from national rankings, simply because who they play week after week……..


August 29th, 2012
11:30 pm

Titletown USA: heard later this afternoon, perhaps you know by now, Reid is done for the year. Wonder what means for him. Try for NFL draft? Sit a year and try for another D-I team? What a tragic waste of talent!


August 29th, 2012
11:34 pm

High school football is good in Georgia but i think Florida,Texas, n California are just as great. Florida is the speed state by far and they have alot of talent in the pros hailing from Florida. I think Miami Cental will win but team ball which Grayson plays could be a factor as well. Camden wing t was the advantage they had. I think any offense besides the wing t, Camden would of got blowed out. I tilt my hat to Camden, they look mighty good against that slow Peachtree team.


August 29th, 2012
11:39 pm

I’m referring about Camden playing Miami Central two years ago. Camden offense was totally new to them, they didn’t have an clue how to stop that wing t, but Camden couldn’t stop that speed Central had on the field. If Central got a mobile qb then Grayson in trouble for sure.


August 30th, 2012
12:25 am

If Camden played Miami Central tomorrow, the results would be the same! Population plays a major role in the number good players in Florida, Texas and California. All of these states have at least twice the population of Georgia. So it stands to reason that they would have a larger number of high caliber players. Football is the major sport in all three states. Florida has great athletes, but it’s too bad that many suffer from a lack of discipline! :-D


August 30th, 2012
12:31 am

GHS#22…….Has Grayson and Camden played more than twice? As far as know, they’re 1-1, with Grayson winning 14-10 at the 2009 CKC and Camden winning in the playoffs 22-7 in 2007. If I’m wrong, please correct me………. :-D


August 30th, 2012
1:48 pm

I thought the game was being televised??


August 30th, 2012
9:45 pm

Go Grayson. Play your game, and there will be no excuse for you all not to bring back to Ga win with you.. Bring the pride of Ga. over Fla with you..

I am a Lowndes fan, and hope you the very very best over Miami.. Play better than in the dome (get the kinks behind you) and I know that you all can make us proud, be safe, on the travel, their and back, our prayers are with you all,

I’ll post later what I think about a 2peat…….

GA Highschool Football fan

September 2nd, 2012
1:53 am

Grayson v. McEachern 31-12: Defense lackluster, Offense BIG surprise
Grayson v. Miami Central: 35-3: Defense SOLID, Offense SOLID

Good luck Grayson in your regular season. Gwinnett Co. has LOTS of talent.


September 2nd, 2012
5:17 pm

Everybody hates a winner. That’s why they hate Obama so much.