AAAAAA blog: Can a passing team (Lassiter) win a state title in the highest class?

Lassiter is up to No. 2 in the rankings, best in the school’s history.

Even at 10-0 in 2009, Lassiter was no higher than No. 9 entering the state playoffs. That was the year of Hutson Mason, who threw for 4,560 yards and 54 touchdowns, both state records.

Lassiter lost in the quarterfinals that year to Colquitt County, and Mason was intercepted five times. The title was won by Camden County, a Wing T team that passed fewer than 10 times per game.

This season, another Lassiter quarterback is setting a record pace. Eddie Printz has passed for 831 yards and 10 touchdowns in three games, with about 85 percent of that accomplished in the first half of blowouts.

In the 42-13 victory over Kell last week, Printz threw four touchdowns, all to Willie Police. Police had six receptions for 206 yards. Police scored on three long TD passes in the first quarter against a Kell secondary that features two FBS players, one going to Georgia, the other South Carolina.

There have been a half-dozen ”balanced” offenses to win the highest class over the past few decades, such as SW DeKalb in 1995, Colquitt County in 1994, Morrow in 1987. But those teams also rushed for more than 2,000 yards.

The last time a team won a state title in the highest classification with a team that was known for passing might’ve been Valdosta in 1971.

Can Lassiter do it? Can anyone?

33 comments Add your comment

waltonfan

September 18th, 2012
4:27 pm

Of course they can do it. They’re good enough but things have to fall into place.

sportsnut

September 18th, 2012
5:20 pm

They can do it. They must also have enough of a running game to run some clock. They must count on the big play as the field gets smaller as you get closer to the endzone. If all you have is passing, it will get increasingly hard to score because of a lack of space to operate. It can be done as long as you have a spectacular Defense. Big plays mean less time on the field for the offense and more of it for the Defense. Do you run the risk of dogging your D before half ? This leaves you in a situation where you may need to outscore someone and how can you do that if your D is tired and unable to stop your opponent ?

slim065

September 18th, 2012
6:29 pm

Lassiter does have a more balanced offense (this year as well as last year). Much different than when Lindsey was there in 08 and 09 with Mason. One reason for this is the offensive line has some very, very good players on it (I believe 4/5 starters on the line are juniors and a couple sophs are also seeing time). I think they have run for 100+ in all 3 games this year so far, though I have to wonder if some of the rushing hasn’t been necessitated because of the huge leads.

I though Kell would have slowed Lassiter down, and while they took away Dickey and Jenkins, that left Police able to go wild. Lassiter has a stable of very good WR and guys out of the backfield who can catch, and I can’t remember seeing many 4 and 5 wide sets this year which would put a couple other juniors out on the edges that could be match up problems for any team.

As always, it will come down to playoff match ups to see who has the best path to the Dome. However, Lassiter has all the ingredients in place to do something very special this year. Games against Walton and Milton in October will tell a lot. Though I am not sure the 6A state champ will be undefeated, so I won’t look much at regular season losses for any team.

WILDHAWG2012

September 18th, 2012
6:59 pm

@sportsnut= very nicely put dude well said

TheyCanDoIt

September 18th, 2012
7:42 pm

Lassiter is averaging 163 rushing yards & 2 rushing TD per game.

Tom

September 18th, 2012
7:47 pm

Nope. Next question…

Jacketaxe

September 18th, 2012
8:08 pm

Impressive stats, sounds like a great qb.

Ozz1373

September 18th, 2012
8:51 pm

Those 4 Junior O-lineman are all returning starters from last years team and will only get get better. The key as always is to avoid the injury bug!

rwdekalb

September 18th, 2012
9:29 pm

No matter what kind of team you have it also takes just a little bit of luck to win a title.

Plowboy - Viking

September 18th, 2012
9:45 pm

Wing T rules the state championships in the highest class

battleaxekid

September 18th, 2012
9:48 pm

I am impressed with Prinz, and the have played some good teams, but as some posts have already posted you have o have some type of time eating drives, unless you have a GREAT dfense. They may go further than they did last year, but again you cannot depend on the arm of Prinz and leave too much time on the clock unless you have a sure enough unstoppable dfense… If Lassiter has then they have a shot at a good season. But the question is, when playoff time comes will he be able to continue to exploit weak defenses as he is now, and secondly, hey will be facing a better team each week for 5 games straight. IMO, I would say no, the arm of Prinz alone will not win the state.

And of course I may be wrong…. and they may have a great dfense…. too early to tell. It is a lot of pressure to put on his shoulder alone…… It amay take a toll on him, as we have seen earlier this season, the 1 (one) man teams have seemed to be ranked high early and they have began to fall weekly….

bksmith14

September 18th, 2012
11:22 pm

Nope…….Next!!

Rufus69

September 18th, 2012
11:30 pm

Winning Championships has to do with defense. I honestly do not think that the style of offense matters. You may outscore your opponent in a couple of games but in the long run…it’s about stopping the other team and giving your offense the ball on the shortest field possible.

Rufus>>

Chris Hiers

September 19th, 2012
12:44 am

That 1987 Morrow team clicked. We had many offensive weapons.

Who Cares

September 19th, 2012
2:24 am

No way. Won’t make it past the third round. If Collins Hill couldn’t do it will Heinz a couple years ago, then no way Lassiter does it. Teams defenses in the State playoffs are way to strong for a pass oriented team.

BamaBornDukie

September 19th, 2012
6:40 am

They made the Semifinals in 2011 before losing to Walton.

2011 Playoff Run
Alpharetta: 9-1 (Lassiter won 17-16)
McEachern: 10-1 (Lassiter won 20-17)
MLK: 12-0 (Lassiter won 24-14)
Walton: 13-0 (Walton won 30-24)

Impressive run IMO. I think Lassiter’s passing attack poses a bigger threat to a team like Grayson than does a predominantly running team like Walton did last season.

I’ve attended 1 Lassiter game this season and think they have a very good chance to win the Championship.

Les F

September 19th, 2012
7:27 am

I am going say “yes they could” but follow it up with “no they wont” because of the trends I’ve seen from the OC at Lassiter. He gets conservative after any kind of lead. The attitude of the team reflects the leadership of the team. They play scared and will not win the big game in a close battle. Walton absolutely owns Lassiter. Lassiter has a shut down defense but will get worn out by being forced back onto the field numerous times by a flat second half offense. See Hillgrove game.

BamaBornDukie

September 19th, 2012
7:49 am

@Les. Walton has owned Lassiter to some extent in recent years but I think Lassiter can name their score against Walton this year. Walton is 1 dimensional on offense and Lassiter will force Walton to pass. On offense, Lassiter has way too many weapons for a limited Walton defense that is probably among the worst in Class AAAAAA. I can see Lassiter up 35-14 on Walton by halftime. I’d also predict a special teams TD for Lassiter in the return game.

Stop Tyren Jones…you stop Walton.

Sideline Dude

September 19th, 2012
8:49 am

Camden may be the best of the classification. Doesn’t matter what anybody else an do.

Oldschool Hawg

September 19th, 2012
9:03 am

A passing team has to have a great, and I mean GREAT O-Line to win all the way. They didn’t have one in 09, and we stayed in Mason’s grill all night long and caused him to make some bad choices. I have no idea what they look like on the line this year, but I would have to say that you have to have some balance and not be one dimensional or a decent defensive coordinator will rip the O to shreds.

alphadog

September 19th, 2012
9:59 am

Lassiter came within 5 yards of beating Walton and making the finals last year. This year’s defense is stellar and the Trojans have proven they can run the ball when they want. After putting up almost 40 first half points in each game this year the coaching staff calls off the dogs, plays reserves and doesn’t seek to embarrass the opposition (until the Walton game!). They have a chance to go all the way if they don’t meet a balanced defensive team like Colquitt ‘09, whose front 4 pressured the QB all night while the secondary shut down the receivers.

Todd Holcomb

September 19th, 2012
10:45 am

Good point about Lassiter running the ball well this season, but I think it’s the pass setting up the run. Games have been broken open w/ passing. … It’s interesting how quickly Georgia has changed to a run-dominated state to one that is mixed pretty well. There have been five receivers that I know about this season who have 200+ yards receiving in a single game, including Police, who did it in the first half.

Heisenberg

September 19th, 2012
11:16 am

In addition to a solid running game with 2 good runners (1 & 33) sharing the load, the defense reminds me of the old Dolphins no-name defense. There is not one dominating guy, but they can get into the backfield to disrupt plays and execute their assignments very well. Sure they have a great passing game, but Lassiter is not a one dimensional team.

57Cat

September 19th, 2012
12:29 pm

No matter the offense, it’s defense that wins championships. Valdosta has a potent run/pass offense, but unless the defense comes around, we’ll be hard pressed to get beyond the second round of the playoffs, assuming we make the playoffs. We have to cut down on the penalties, especially at critical times, (averaging 12 or so a game) to even get out of Region 1 play.

Moly

September 19th, 2012
3:51 pm

Of course they can. Last year I wrote my best essay on this topic.

Coach madden

September 19th, 2012
4:08 pm

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68 viking

September 19th, 2012
5:34 pm

I think it could be done , but that would require a very stout defense with reserves

DOSTA DAWGS

September 19th, 2012
6:12 pm

Enter your comments here

Camden74

September 19th, 2012
6:56 pm

They can if the game’s a shootout, or if their opponent doesn’t have a good defense or a good offense. Otherwise, NO!

West Forsyth

September 19th, 2012
9:41 pm

I haven’t looked at the brackets yet, but if West Forsyth goes in as a 1 or 2 seed, look out for them. Their offiense is no longer the straight Wing T. They have 2 D1 players at skill positions, a good Oline, and a much improved D. They upset Hillgrove on the road last year before losing to Grayson on the road (after a good first half).

GwinnettDad

September 19th, 2012
10:14 pm

Doubt it. NG in 2009 was 12-0, and their passing offense looked unstoppable to me. Camden came up to their house and won 35-0 in the third round. Seems that High School QBs can get scrambled by a defense, and if so, its very hard to adjust. Hard to find QBs that can find that third receiver.

Todd Holcomb

September 21st, 2012
9:13 am

”No matter the offense, it’s defense that wins championships.”

Brookwood won the title in 2010 despite allowing 35 points or more in three different games.

Todd Holcomb

September 21st, 2012
9:15 am

Should’ve said this earlier in case someone has an exception to this, but I believe the only team that has won Georgia’s highest class while averaging 200+ passing yards/game was Valdosta in 1971. You think Wright Bazemore was ahead of his time? QB was Stan Bounds (Ole Miss), and top WR was Stan Rome (Clemson). One set the GA record for passing yards in a season. The other set a national record for receiving yards in a season. Rome’s son, Jay, now plays at UGA.