AAAAAA blog: Archer (6-2) vs. South Gwinnett (5-2) might be must-win situation

Five things to watch in Class AAAAAA this week …

- Is it a must-win game for Archer and South Gwinnett? – The deepest AAAAAA region north of Region 1 is Region 8. There’s probably not enough room for Archer (6-2, 4-2) and South Gwinnett (5-2, 4-1) in the playoffs. They play each other Friday at Archer.

According to the Maxwell Ratings, both are top-20 teams, better than at last a dozen teams that are going to make the playoffs. But Archer needs to beat South Gwinnett this week or seventh-ranked Grayson next week to make it. The Tigers have lost heartbreakers to Brookwood (20-19) and Parkview (20-18).

South Gwinnett’s only losses are to No. 3 Norcross and No. 7 Grayson. They’ll need to beat Archer, Brookwood or Parkview to make the playoffs.

- Milton-Walton gets national (ESPNU) attention – The Milton-Walton game will be televised by ESPNU at 9 p.m. Friday. Some would argue that these teams have the best running backs in Class AAAAAA (although Alvin Kamara at Norcross and Travis Custis of Lovejoy might object). Tyren Jones has rushed for 1,547 of Walton’s 1,572 rushing yards this season. Milton’s Peyton Barber has 1,148 yards rushing and 16 touchdowns.

- Region 1 wars resume with Colquitt County vs. Valdosta – Consistent Colquitt County, ranked No. 9, are 1-2 in games against other members of the Top 10, all games decided by seven points or less. They’ve beaten everybody else. Valdosta has lost to Class AA Brooks County and been embarrassed by Camden County 43-6, but played No. 4 Lowndes to the final play. A year ago, Valdosta beat Colquitt 27-24 in overtime in the final game of the regular season to win the region title. Which Valdosta will we see Friday?

- Lovejoy can lock down Region 2 – Lovejoy (7-1, 4-0) is looking for its third straight region title and fifth in 10 seasons. Newton (3-4, 3-0) is the only other unbeaten team in the region, but figures to be no match for Lovejoy, which has outscored its region opponents 151-0. But Newton could steal the region with a victory because the Rams’ remaining opponents are Morrow (1-6) and Luella (1-7). Lovejoy probably could not clinch until facing Alcovy (3-4, 2-1) in the final game.

- Hughes can march closer to its first region title – Region 3 also has a game between the remaining unbeaten teams in region play. Hughes (6-1, 2-0) beat Newnan (5-2, 1-1) last week. No other team in the region has a winning record overall, but East Coweta (3-4, 2-0) has played well lately in wins over Westlakee (24-7) and Tri-Cities (44-15). Hughes is playing its fourth season and seeking its first region title.

95 comments Add your comment

Can]mden74

October 25th, 2012
10:31 am

Gotta give the edge to Jones as best running back…. :-)

Heisenberg

October 25th, 2012
10:52 am

The Milton-Walton game will decide #2 in 5-AAAAAA with the loser going on the road to open the playoffs. Will watch the second half after getting home from seeing Lassiter beat Wheeler.

Fred

October 25th, 2012
10:54 am

@Todd – the game is at South, not at Archer. I’m thinking about going to watch during our bye week as I expect it to be a very good game.

OMacG

October 25th, 2012
10:58 am

@ Camden 74- no argument from me on that. I might even say it’s more than an edge…for Walton to have success, a heap of the load falls on Jones’ shoulders and his response seems to be “give me more.” Very enjoyable to watch him run the ball.

Fred

October 25th, 2012
11:00 am

If you can shut down Jones you have a real good chance of shutting down Walton. I know you go with the horse you rode in on but it appears that Walton relies on Jones way too much. It takes a complete team D effort to shut him down but it can be done. The last thing you want is to give him time to get the ball and get a read on the field. He is very good at finding holes and hard to stop/catch when he gets rolling.

sportsnut

October 25th, 2012
12:30 pm

I agree with Fred on this. There has got to be a way for them to make plays sometimes without Jones. He is a super athlete and he needs help. Walton can’t continue to rely on him solely. Langston Hughes is a surprise. They are in the top five in scoring defense and should handle East Coweta.Now is the time for Valdosta to try and salvage their season. I am sure that they would love to play spoiler any way they can, especially in region and obtain bragging rights for a year. I hope it is a good game. I think Archer pulls this one out. I saw South against Grayson and have never seen Archer. South lacks athletes at the skill positions.

Heisenberg

October 25th, 2012
12:43 pm

Having seen Lassiter beat both Walton & Milton this year, I give Milton the slight edge. Walton does not have the air game Lassiter has so Milton can overplay the run. Even though both teams will run, this could still be a high scoring game with last team to have the ball wins.

ALL TUCKERRED UP

October 25th, 2012
12:47 pm

Milton is an upgrade this year. Two barrels are better than one. Go MILTON

grayram

October 25th, 2012
12:47 pm

Todd, you mention Reg 8 being the deepest north of Reg 1.
If you took the playoff contenders from both
Camden, Parkview, Grayson, Lowndes, Brookwood, Colquitt, Archer, Coffee, Valdosta, South Gwinnett.
If these teams were all in one region who do you think the four playoff teams would be?

grayram

October 25th, 2012
12:49 pm

Sportsnut, South has good athletes at skill positions. They never got going against Grayson, Grayson has a pretty good Defense could be one reason but look at their whole season and you will see they do have some very good skill players.

LassiterDad

October 25th, 2012
1:15 pm

Both Jones and Barber are special players, and I’m happy to have our games against them behind us. Walton relies 100% on Jones–can’t remember seeing a high school team so one-dimensional (keeping in mind that their starting QB was out against Lassiter.) Milton will have trouble when Jones gets to the second level, as they don’t have great speed in their back 7. However, Milton’s double-barreled backs and line are very tough. I thought Milton’s coaches panicked a little when we took the lead–there were 9 minutes left in the game and they started throwing the ball. If they remain patient and don’t overreact to getting behind, I believe Milton will wear Walton down.

VikingTillEye

October 25th, 2012
2:12 pm

I’m actually excited to see that Milton-Walton game

Camden74

October 25th, 2012
2:14 pm

I’m really happy Tyren Jones has remained relatively healthy, considering the amount of carries he has. Having seen both Milton and Walton play Lassiter, Milton should win this game. But, if Milton’s HC doesn’t stay in control of momentum and play calling, Walton will make it a toss up. Milton, with it’s backfield, should be able to control the clock and keep momentum on their side. :-)

NGHS 09

October 25th, 2012
2:52 pm

Walton won’t make it past round 2. A great defense can always shut down one player.

NGHS 09

October 25th, 2012
2:57 pm

Interesting to see the brackets as they stand now. NG would travel to Parkview, and the winner of that game would play Camden or Lowndes (depending on their upcoming game. Parkview has a LONG road ahead of themselves. Flowe will need all of his tricks and then some to survive the gauntlet. The bottom right side of the bracket is a joke compared to the matchups in the other the parts of the bracket. I think an underdog or a coin flip for home field advantage will determine who makes it to the dome this year.

BamaBornDukie

October 25th, 2012
3:06 pm

Agree with the going sentiment in that the Walton offensive game-plan is perhaps the most predictable I’ve ever seen at the large classification high school level. Reminds me of LSU in college in terms of their lack of creativity. I really feel that the staff has failed the players in terms of actually developing a game-winning strategy. Jones would probably average 10 yards per carry if he played in a more creative, less predictable offense.

Walton will lose to Milton and probably play at Grayson in Round 1 and get dominated…….all the while running Tyren Jones left….then right….then up the middle. Kudos to Jones as its remarkable that he has run for over 221 yards per game when the other team knows Walton is running 1 of 4 plays everytime.

I will say 1 thing in defense of the Walton staff…… Neither QB I’ve seen play this year is a difference-maker in terms of winning games. But perhaps they could develop another RB or a short-passing game….or some mis-direction.

bksmith14

October 25th, 2012
3:28 pm

lowndes will have to have tiquan lang back if they want to go far in playoffs……if we go 9-1 (only loss to camden) then we can win rd 1 without him……rd 2 against lovejoy on the rd ….WE WOULD HAVE TO HAVE HIM to pull that off….but anything is possible

If we upset camden and go 10-0……then we can win rd 1 and 2 without him but we need him for the quarterfinals for grayson or norcross.

Norcorss is very good and will suprise a few people…….They beat parkview 21-0….same parkview team who shut down grayson

bksmith14

October 25th, 2012
3:30 pm

grayson will have to go through norcross ,camden , lowndes…2 of those 3 for sure to get to dome.

bksmith14

October 25th, 2012
3:31 pm

grayson has a state championship defense…..no doubt..we will see how their offense does against “real” defenses

Camden74

October 25th, 2012
3:37 pm

bk…..You have it all laid out huh? Remember, the best laid plans…………… :-)

BamaBornDukie

October 25th, 2012
3:48 pm

I attended the Norcross vs Parkview game and ‘cross has a plethora of athletes across the board. Alvin Kamara was essentially ineffective due to an ankle injury but Myles Autry and others made plays, including on special teams. The ‘cross defense is also very fast and athletic.

Looking like Norcross will have the path described above (replace Norcross for Grayson) by bksmith14 if they are to win the championship….one that will be well-deserved if they do indeed traverse that gauntlet.

Heisenberg

October 25th, 2012
4:24 pm

Lassiter knows as well as anybody that anything can happen in the playoffs as they advanced from a #4 seed all the way to final 4 last year. Having said that, the #1 seed from 5-AAAAAA bracket excludes the heavy weights from 1-AAAAAA and 8-AAAAAA. Lassiter would get either South GW, Brookwood, or Archer at home to open. Other dangerous teams that could fall into that bracket include Colquitt Co, Coffee, Johns Creek, North GW. The other #1 seed in that bracket comes from 3-AAAAAA which does not look very strong. The prospect of 3 home games on the way to another final 4 while the other top teams take each other out looks real good for Trojan Nation.

Dekalb Co Guy

October 25th, 2012
4:29 pm

@Sportsnut

Hughes is having a good year and suprised me beating Newnan last week. Things are different now, Hughes will have the bullseye on their back, I think East Coweta who is getting better and has played powerhouses (your beloved Lovejoy), and Sandy Creek along with a good Arcber squad. I think that schedule will benefit them and they steal one on the road this week

slim065

October 25th, 2012
4:38 pm

With the amount of injuries Walton has suffered (heard of 3 more since their game vs Wheeler), I give the slight edge to Milton. However, Jones is a HECK of a player and if Milton let’s him break a couple of 40+ yarders it could really change the game. Both teams are run-first and are more than likely keyed on defense to stop that. Walton though does possess more of a pass threat than Milton does and won their game last week on a TD pass. So that threat could prove big in the game at some point.

Not sure I will catch the first part of the game sicne I might go check out Lassiter again, but am very interested to see these teams showcased nationally.

NGHS 09

October 25th, 2012
4:40 pm

@bksmith…Grayson shut themselves down against Parkview with 4 turnovers on their side of the 50. Look, you can’t say one team will win and another will lose. It’s just asinine to predict a winner in a season full of surprises. Parkview has a very opportunistic defense and an outstanding RB, but they are not better than Grayson in the long run. Norcross shut Parkview down before Parkview decided to stop throwing the football. Parkview’s offense was non-existent until they beat Grayson, so how telling is their loss to Norcross?…meaningless. Comparing scores and wins/loses don’t provide a reliable gauge on who might win a particular game. Perfect example of how that ideology doesn’t work…North Cobb and South Cobb, and then McEachern vs both. Any team can lose on any given night.

Just Rammin

October 25th, 2012
5:12 pm

I agree with you NGHS 09 on the Parkview game. I believe Grayson beats them 9 out of 10 and 10 0ut of ten if they come to play. The winner will come out of the top right of the bracket but they will be well tested by the time it is all said and done. Mirrors a little bit like last year where Grayson’s toughest competition came in the quarters and semis against Lowndes and Colquitt.

the truth

October 25th, 2012
5:14 pm

NGHS, you are right in the sense that anything can happen. However, Norcross has played very good football this year (believe me I have a hard time saying that with the coach they have) and if they beat Peachtree Ridge as they have other teams this year they have earned the right to be considered a contender for the championship.

bksmith14

October 25th, 2012
5:20 pm

it says a lot for lowndes when they were one of the teams that gave grayson one of its toughest games and yet we had one of the worst teams we have had in a while last year. grayson had the best team they have had in years last year……

DOSTADAWGS….i have said lowndes is goin to be good the next 2 years……..i dont know enough about the boys below that level to go beyond 2 years though.

the truth

October 25th, 2012
5:26 pm

Just Rammin.. I think you are correct with your assumption. I have seen other states do not match districts in playoffs but seed their teams for the playoffs. It is in interesting attempt to have the 2 best teams play in the finals instead of those teams possibly meeting in the quarters or semifinals.

grayram

October 25th, 2012
6:07 pm

Norcross is certainly worthy of being considered a contender. They have looked great since preseason.

If it does work out where Grayson and Lowndes meet again, The Lowndes coach is going to have to make some adjustments. In previous meetings their Offensive scheme produced only a handful of 1st downs. Late in the last game their QB made some great individual effort plays and completed a few passes but it was too late.

Its fun to look at the brackets and try and say this team or that team is going to have to go thru this one or that one but you never can tell who they will actually play. The bracket structure changes pretty quick when things like Hillgrove beating Camden or Collins Hill Beating Lowndes or Colquitt beating Grayson or Valdosta losing in 1st.

Camden74

October 25th, 2012
6:12 pm

the truth……..Why do you think Peachtree Ridge will be a good test for Norcross, if that’s your thinking? If Norcross is as good as everyone seem to think they are, PtR should be a complete blow out……… :-)

cat doc

October 25th, 2012
6:24 pm

Norcross #1. now thats a statement.

bksmith14

October 25th, 2012
8:02 pm

lowndes first td last year against grasyon was called back on a horrible call and we had to settle for a fg….had that td stood then it would have been at least 25-21…lol

The Cross

October 25th, 2012
8:05 pm

Peachtree Ridge has some talent but they are like some high school teams that can only put it together in small, short bursts. I am worried that this could be a trap game for Norcross. If the Ridge were able to put it all together for 4 quarters and Norcross comes out flat it could be a dog fight. But I watched every practice this week and Maloof has the Blue Devils laser-focused, so I think the probability is low.

The Cross

Just Rammin

October 25th, 2012
8:09 pm

If and buts were candy and nuts every day would be Christmas bk. Droning on about bad calls gets old. They are part of the game, just like high school kids not showing up to play on occasion or turnovers evening games out. That is the beauty of the sport and I am sure Lowndes has never had a call go their way.

Camden74

October 25th, 2012
8:18 pm

The Cross…….Coming out flat is NO excuse! Good teams come out flat all the time when playing lesser opponents! But losing to a lesser team because you’re flat, that won’t fly! :-)

The Cross

October 25th, 2012
8:28 pm

Camden74-Norcross will be 10-0 on November 9th…you can write that down in ink. :-)

The Cross

Newnan fan

October 25th, 2012
8:33 pm

Hughes is a pretty good team. Unfortunately Newnan is just average at best this year. Not sure if Newnan is a good measuring stick.

sportsnut

October 25th, 2012
9:20 pm

@ Grayram == Maybe I do need to see more. It just appeared they were overmatched. At the start, I thought it would be a good one. Turned out not so good for South. I think they could make a little noise but they need to beat Archer this week to remain alive. @ Dekalb Co. Guy == I was not surprised by the win. I was however surprised by the score. I hope they continue to do well and can be Lovejoys running partner in the playoffs like Tri-Cities did last year. East Coweta will be a hard out. They are physical and have heart. Other than the Colquit game, they held us to our lowest point total (30)

Camden74

October 25th, 2012
10:03 pm

The Cross…….What does Norcross’ remaining schedule look like, is it just show up and the game is their’s? :-)

bksmith14

October 25th, 2012
10:31 pm

norcross is good but i dont see them going to dome considering the bracket they will be in

Fred

October 25th, 2012
10:51 pm

@bksmith14 – You just can’t accept it! Lowndes wasn’t one of Grayson’s hardest games. Calls went both ways in that game. Lowndes played a good game, represented themselves well and got beat. It was not as close as you want to make it out to be. Get over it! Saying if this, but for that, and whatever other excuse you want to use doesn’t change anything. Trying to make your team out as better by saying you had the worst team in forever while we had the best team ever is just another excuse. The final score was 25-17. You put up the most points you could and came up short. Move on.

bksmith14

October 25th, 2012
10:53 pm

colquitt countys defense better get back to its old ways soon with playoffs looming and valdosta and camden right around the corner……brunswick put up 540 yds of offense on that pack d who has been god this year…OUCH

battleaxekid

October 25th, 2012
11:19 pm

For Archer and S.G. game they both came a long way in a short amount of time. Archer opening not too long ago and now competing in 6a, Didn’t they make the payoffs last year?
S. G. with a not so good year last year and of course a hard road to go in the region the rest of this year and to be where they are now….. considering both S.G.and Archer coming out of the region that the state champ came out of…. IMPROVEMENT FROM BOTH TEAMS.. both are getting better as the year(s) go by, that is more than you can say about 7 out of 8 regions in at least in 6a..

Don’t know much about Milton, but Walton had the easiest schedule out of EVERY, EVERY division 5a team last year 15 games, and may have face 2 ranked teams, late???? The bracket was a cakewalk for the entire right side last year IMO…

Yea a little bias about the next point referring to region 1. IMO it is the toughest from bottom to top of the 8 regions in 6a…. Camden and Brunswick helped with this… Sure there will be as some will call them (upsets)… I just call them payoffs… call um what you want but there will be some teams that will not suppose to be there at the finish that should not have gotten there, ((( says the ranking)))…
IMO there will be a region 1 team at the dome bidding for the champion ship,, in 6a as well as 2AA..

Lovejoy locking up their region, Okay???? then what,

and the same with region 3 with Hughes or whoever, okay??>> No disrespect meant to either Lovejoy or hughes, but IMO both weak regions, won’t get far… again the ol addage (((on any given))))…

Rankings matters (O) …. Seeding matters only one point, Homefield adantage, until the notorious flip of the coin…….. like that about as much as the Major league Baseball (1 GAME PLAYOFF??????) DUMB……
say that to say this…. NEWS FLASH…. Ga. prep teams have 10 preseason games, before 5 game season.. ….. we all caall it the playoffs, the brackets, the (( 1 game and your out or your in)) SUDDEN DEATH 32 TEAM 5 GAME SEASON…

WOW…. 3 more weeks and the season begins for 32 well…. Top high school teams in each division… there will be allegations of refs cheating to clocks being rigged, to No calls , to should have been called… penalties.. there will be Home field advantage … lights not working, to the bands are too loud, side line warning, to cars being keyeddddddd.. Dark parking lots, to no where to park…
Boy ain’t it gona be fun though!!!!!!!!!

There will be predictions that will go unobserved, to absurd… and I WILL BE PART OF THE LAST and most of the above….

So here we go…. again all in fun, nothing personal, Football is what we humans call a game… and rightly so… My prayers are that throughout the year and all the miles that are driven that all stay safe, and especially our players be protected on the field.

And hopefully see you at the dome………. Go Ga. prep football especially 6AAAAAA, and my Mighty Vikings……

battleaxekid

October 25th, 2012
11:28 pm

5 out of the top ten of the teams within the composite rankings out of the top 5 will be our 6AAAAAA state champ.. IMO….Hope it’s us….. may be you, hope not but you never know but we will all find out sooner than later…….. The rest of the 49 states and I did know that we do have 50 states BTW… can not and will never measure up to GEORGIA HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL ……. Go Ga. High school football… Notice I wrote HIGH SCHOOL after GEORGIA, and not college or Pro Ga. football… right???? had to throw that… in there..

The Cross

October 25th, 2012
11:49 pm

Camden74- I believe we will have to play a good game tomorrow to beat Peachtree Ridge. And then we have a bye and finish with Meadowcreek which hasn’t won a game in 4 years.

The Cross

the truth

October 25th, 2012
11:50 pm

Camden74, I believe Norcross has Peachtree Ridge, bye, Meadowcreek for last three weeks.

Candytails

October 25th, 2012
11:58 pm

GO MILTON! WIN IT FOR UR COACH!

the truth

October 25th, 2012
11:58 pm

Camden74..I do not trust the Norcross coach. I have seen them play a few times during his tenure and he always seems to make bad decisions that cost his teams in games. I am wondering if he is getting advice from his brother who used to coach at Dacula and retired. Dacula never seemed to have the talent of other teams but they played smart football and seemed to be in contention, even making it to the semifinals when they were played in Ga Dome.

battleaxekid

October 26th, 2012
12:03 am

@The Cross

Better rest ( protect) your team, Kamara……. Man he’s good. I saw the Game online when …. HE beat parkview, I think he won the game, I think in the 1st qtr, and a few minutes of the 2nd qtr, and ya’ golf carted him off before the 2nd half was over…

Simply trying to say this if Kamara has even a hint of a bad game, do think ya’ll have a chance…. He is as good an athlete as Ga. has in the state this year.. He was pretty good last year, but not the man he is this year, so, protect him if ya’ll even want a shot at all the marbles this year…. IMO, only…