By S. Thomas Coleman
For the AJC
Now that the Power Ranking system for determining playoff teams in Class A football has officially done its job, it is fairly safe to say that a couple of tweaks will most likely be made before next season.
The Georgia High School Association certified the rankings on Wednesday and announced the playoff pairings for both the public and private school playoffs, after hearing a total of seven appeals, according to GHSA executive director Ralph Swearngin. However, only one appeal was upheld, made by Darlington of Rome. The Tigers pointed out that their point total was .02 too high, but the correction did not change their No. 8 seeding.
The other protests, Swearngin said, were against the process used to determine Power Rankings. But the rules could not be changed.
“They appealed because they didn’t like the steps in the process, not that they thought their numbers were wrong,” Swearngin said. “The members of the appeals committee didn’t feel we could change the rules at this point.”
The two main arguments against the process Swearngin said were that teams did not get credit for their opponents that did not play a region schedule, and teams were awarded too many points for playing teams from higher classifications.
“It’s my guess that the various committees will take a look at these issues,” Swearngin said of the possibility that some of the rules may change for next season.
But that doesn’t help Telfair County and head coach Matt Burleson. His team did not get credit for a win over Baconton Charter, a team that played a non-region schedule. Had Telfair been given credit for the win, it would have advanced to the public school playoffs, where two teams the Trojans defeated — Turner County and Charlton County — will compete next week.
“I’m upset because [the GHSA] didn’t tell us this until the fourth week of the season,” said Burleson, who in his first year at Telfair improved upon a combined record of 1-19 over the previous two seasons. “If I would have known that, I wouldn’t have scheduled them.”
(Playoffs begin Nov. 23)
PUBLIC SCHOOL PAIRINGS
No. 1 Lincoln County hosts No. 16 Hancock Central
No. 2 Wilcox County hosts No. 15 Greenville
No. 3 Emanuel County Institute hosts No. 14 Gordon Lee
No. 4 Seminole County hosts No. 13 Commerce
No. 5 Dooly County hosts No. 12 Turner County
No. 6 Irwin County hosts No. 11 Trion
No. 7 Marion County host No. 10 Charlton County
No. 8 Miller County hosts No. 9 Wilkinson County
PRIVATE SCHOOL PAIRINGS
No. 1 Athens Academy hosts No. 16 Mt. Pisgah Christian
No. 2 Eagle’s Landing Christian Acacdemy hosts No. 15 Our Lady of Mercy
No. 3 Walker hosts No. 14 Athens Christian
No. 4 Brookstone hosts No. 13 First Presbyterian
No. 5 Calvary Day hosts No. 12 Landmark Christian
No. 6 Aquinas host No. 11 George Walton Academy
No. 7 Savannah Christian hosts No. 10 Holy Innocents
No. 8 Darlington hosts No. 9 Prince Avenue Christian