The first two rounds of the Class AAAAA playoffs have been relatively free of major upsets. The higher-seed (home) teams are 19-5, and Tucker is the only No. 3 or No. 4 seed remaining.
Here’s a look at the five games won by the lower-seeded team and how those games rank in terms of upsets.
Heading into the quarterfinals, is there anything that could happen that would be considered a major upset?
1. North Paulding 63, Flowery Branch 43: North Paulding’s first trip to the playoffs produced the biggest upset of the first two rounds. Flowery Branch was the Region 8-AAAAA champion and had not lost in a first-round game since 2007. It’s worth noting that Flowery Branch allowed just 66 points combined in season-opening losses to region champions Northside and West Forsyth.
2. Allatoona 20, M.L. King 19: Allatoona has a good team and a great coaching staff. But the Buccaneers lost by 18 to East Paulding, which lost by 29 to Stephenson, which lost by 19 to M.L. King. So M.L. King should have been 66 points better, right? We know it doesn’t work that way. Still, this was a surprise, especially in light of Stephenson’s victory over East Paulding.
3. Stephenson 35, East Paulding 6: The fact that Stephenson won the game wasn’t as surprising as how completely the Jaguars dominated it. East Paulding was averaging 41 points per game, but the Jaguars held the Raiders to two field goals by Miles Hemphill – a 47-yarder and a 61-yarder. The computer Maxwell Ratings had pegged East Paulding as a 17-point favorite.
4. Gainesville 61, Kell 42: Gainesville’s second-round victory over Kell was not as big of a surprise as the Red Elephants’ two-game losing streak to end the regular season. But Gainesville obviously has recovered behind red-hot quarterback Deshaun Watson, the leading candidate for player of the year in Class AAAAA, and is capable of beating almost anybody.
5. Tucker 42, Creekview 25: Tucker was a No. 3 seed only because of the strength of Region 6-AAAAA, and it was better than the No. 2 team in every region, with the possible exception of Gainesville. The Tigers won the Class AAAA championship in 2011, and they were a top-five team for most of this season. This game was no upset at all.