What we learned: Buford needs its own class

If there was any question about the strength of the Buford football program, it was answered on Friday night. The No. 1-ranked Wolves overpowered Gainesville, the No. 1-ranked team in Class AAAAA, in a battle of reigning state champions.

The 38-14 win accomplished several things for the Wolves:

a. It further established them as the overwhelming choice to repeat their championship

b. It served as revenge from a year ago when Gainesville upset Buford at Tom Riden Field.

c. It served as the starting point for the write-in campaign to get the Wolves moved into Class AAAAAA when they can find some real competition.

Now that Buford has gotten past its two opening games, coach Jess Simpson’s team – barring another clerical mistake — may not get a real challenge until the season finale against North Hall.

“This was important to our football family and our town,” Buford head coach Jess Simpson told the Gwinnett Daily Post. “We had a bad taste in our mouth (after losing to Gainesville last year) and wanted to redeem ourself and I’m so tickled to death for our kids. I don’t know that a lot people thought we could get it done tonight.”

Buford ran the ball at will. The Wolves rushed for 374 yards, with Joshua Thomas carrying 13 times for 139 yards. The Buford defense limited Gainesville quarterback Deshaun Watson to 204 yards and one touchdown. The second Gainesville score came in the final two minutes against the reserves.

Here’s what else we learned on Friday night:

Turnovers doom Thomson: The No. 10 Bulldogs had five turnovers – losing three fumbles and throwing two interceptions – in a 23-14 loss to Lakeside Evans. Thomson was also flagged for 103 penalty yards. The mistakes allowed Lakeside to overcome a 14-0 deficit.

St. Pius can win on the road. The No. 2 Golden Lions went to Watkinsville and hung on to beat North Oconee 28-23. It’s the second straight week St. Pius has gotten out to a lead and had to hang on in the fourth quarter.

North Hall can light up the scoreboard. The Trojans used 13 different ball carriers and ran for 355 yards. Andrew Smith carried 10 times for 97 yards and two touchdowns. Zac Little rushed for 93 yards and two touchdowns. Up next: Next week’s game with reigning Class AA champion Jefferson.

Peach County needs more seasoning. Coach Chad Campbell has warned that his Peach County team is young. Baldwin exposed the youth and inexperience on Friday when the Braves turned Kentavious Thomas loose for 252 yards and three touchdowns in a 35-21 win. Peach had beaten Baldwin four straight times.

Not this time. A year ago the No. 3 Purple Hurricanes had a tough time shaking its rival and won 24-20. That was the third straight meeting between the two teams that were decided by eight or fewer points. This time Cartersville rolled to a 42-7 victory and improved their advantage in the series to 39-5.

Who’s up next? With Peach County and Thomson likely to go bye-bye in the rankings after losing this week, who are the next teams most likely to step up and fill those voids. Top candidates are Hart County, Ringgold, Woodward Academy and Pierce County.

73 comments Add your comment

Dan

September 7th, 2013
4:47 am

Moving Buford up to 6A in football wouldn’t be a bad idea as they could compete there most years. However, the rest of Buford sports could not compete. Find a way to move just the football team and this is a good proposal. Otherwise, it is unworkable.

GnG

September 7th, 2013
5:01 am

Thanks to hard work, great coaching and excellent execution an awesome game was played. Go wolves. Everyone from North Gwinnett tell me that Buford could not stay on the field day in and day out with 5 A or 6 A and everyone knows they are right. :-)

Jefferson

September 7th, 2013
6:25 am

Buford has many advantages.

Dr Fever

September 7th, 2013
6:41 am

They only need some class.

Mountain Man

September 7th, 2013
6:49 am

Do I need to say it again. check out the QB. Let the player mom show me she pays school taxes for her son in Gwinnett and I will stop saying this.

dawgnation#1

September 7th, 2013
7:13 am

They should be made to play a college schedule since over half the players on the team are recruited and don’t even live in the Buford district. This is a fact that you camn look up yourself if you desire. Buford has an advantage in 99% of the games they play due to this. Buford is no better than the MLB players busted for roids…it’s cheating so end of story!!!

stands for decibels

September 7th, 2013
7:23 am

“it’s cheating so end of story!”

Good thing that no other school recruit players from outside their districts. heh.

You people with your concerns about “ethics” regarding this blood sport. It’d be funny if it weren’t so sad.

BufWolvesDen

September 7th, 2013
7:31 am

Stand for decibels sounds like a real hater

dawgnation#1

September 7th, 2013
7:40 am

A blood sport…it’s high school athletics. Any school that recruits is cheating and Buford is doing the best job of cheating right now. I will give them credit for that. Do you realize how many schools don’t have the luxury to recruit and work hard and wait years for that one class of a lifetime to come together so they can play for a title…well do you? Do you think it’s fair that they have their dreams destroyed because of schools like Buford that can just go out and buy a championship each year. Buford is a REAL SWINNER ALRIGHT!!!

Sugar Hill Dawg

September 7th, 2013
7:52 am

Sounds like a few folks need to take a long look in the mirror. Of course Buford has out of district players – SHOCKING!!! Welcome to Gwinnett County football!

Veteran Fan

September 7th, 2013
8:06 am

Every successful program in the state accepts transfers! Buford has great facilities, coaching, and academics! The private schools have been crying about this for years and now some of the Gwinnett public schools are finding out that Buford can beat them at their own game! I am sure that the GHSA checks every transfer very closely. Line up and beat them if you can!

down year

September 7th, 2013
8:39 am

It is probably about 5 schools in the entire state of Georgia that would have a CHANCE at beating Buford. Colquitt, Stephenson, North Gwinnett, Tucker, and NSWR. Would like to see them play the big boys in 6A. They are a top 3 team in 6A easily.

Bill Cosby

September 7th, 2013
8:50 am

Buford looks unstoppable ! WOW But Carver-Columbus 6-6 QB Jawan Pass will be a future 5-Star kid. In only his 2nd Start, 16-21,289 yards , with 2 pass TDs,& 2 rush TDs. Looks like another Carver -Buford showdown in the 3rd Rd.
http://media.ledger-enquirer.com/smedia/2013/09/06/21/41/1peOqu.AuSt.70.jpeg

dawgnation#1

September 7th, 2013
8:56 am

So as long as everybody does it…it’s OK. Well I guess Lance Armstrong didn’t cheat because everybody else was doing it also. Norcross may be cheating too, but at least they played a real team (Booker T. Washington of Miamai). That one didn’t turn out so well. Maybe Buford needs to start showing off some of this talent to schools like Booker T. Washington instead of feasting on these smaller schools. I see where Booker T. not only handled Norcross (who I think were ranked #5 in the USA Today 25 at the time) but they also handled Miami Central (ranked #5 this week in the USA Today) last night. Maybe it’s time for Buford to show off some of that talent. Does Buford have what it takes to compete at that level? I’d sure like to find out if they are really that good.

Snoopy

September 7th, 2013
9:09 am

Let the haters Hate… When you should appreciate… They do things the right way.. For all you whiners.. LOL all over yourselves..

They play in the GFL, the best organized youth football program in the US.. They hold their own there too (meaning a lot of the kids grownup together..)

if anyone has proof of what you call cheating, bring it to the powers that be… There’s nothing there.. You know it, they know it.. Grow your programs & quit ur biatchin!!

Go Wolves!

Snoopy

September 7th, 2013
9:12 am

Dawg – Ask your local high school AD to publicly ask Buford AD Dexter Wood for a game… He’d graciously accept..

BTW – Buford had traveled to Texas & Ohio when asked to play in the Kirk Herbstreet Classic.. We represented our state very well, thank you..

Pooman

September 7th, 2013
9:30 am

I love how people outside Gwinnett/Hall counties “think” they know what’s going on at Buford. The truth is Buford does it right, the have mastered the three A’s (academics, athletics and arts). Look at the top high schools in Georgia in academics……you will see Buford is in the top 10. Buford has two kids that are seniors that have D1 offers but these two will hit the Ivy leagues. Buford sits in a LOCATION that gets no better, the real advantage for Buford is their LOCATION. But guess what……Buford didn’t just locate the city there…..it’s been there. The boom of Atlanta growth has BUFORD a place of choice for many people. Buford has more transfers for the academics than it does for sports….FACT, look it up. This jealousy thing that some have against Buford is humorous. Build your school system like Buford has…..it takes years and years to build it…..it’s taken Buford 20+ years to build this. It’s not gonna stop, Buford moves to AAAA next year, plans to build a high school that will hold AAAAAA numbers are in the works…..give it time, Rome wasn’t built in a single day. While Buford is building this, they will keep the student on its mind first. Buford only wants 15-20 Kids per teacher in a class room. Takes time folks….your wish of Buford in AAAAAA will come in time. Give Buford 10 more years.

CA Native

September 7th, 2013
9:32 am

A few things to consider.

1. GHSA does NOT examine individual transfers. They don’t have the staff. Each individual school including the Head Coach, athletic director and attendance office is responsible. It’s very much an honor system. Schools either self report or someone has to file a complaint to GHSA and likey show some real proof. GHSA is not the NCAA with its own investigation staff.

2. Buford is apart of Buford City schools which makes their own guidelines on who can attend. Now in general in sure they make a way for any player they want to participate, but last year the did in fact self report on forfeited games.

http://blogs.ajc.com/georgia-high-school-sports/2012/10/22/buford-forfeits-two-football-games-of-using-ineligible-player/

3. Georgia’s transfer rules are a joke at best. In 2010, a 4 star DL from Westlake transferred to Sandy Creek in week 10, and was immediately eligible for the state playoffs. In CA where I played, any transfer is immediately ineligible until you are cleared by the CIF Section office. They check addresses, talk to players families and coaches until they are satisfied the move is legitimate.

Buford should ask for a waiver to play up for football only. They are clearly good enough.

Camden74

September 7th, 2013
11:45 am

The former 2A bullies played a one man team with a defense that played AWFUL, last night. Either move them up in classification or allow everyone to RECRUIT players! :-)

yo

September 7th, 2013
12:10 pm

I’ve told you guys it’s the water. What else could cause a small school that doesn’t accept (recruit) a large amount of transfers to have so many Div 1 players who commonly weigh 300 lbs. year after year after year. It has to be Buford’s water. The secret is in getting their water and you too will have many 300 lb. high school Div 1 players year after year after year.

bighoss

September 7th, 2013
12:18 pm

why did buford travel to ohio to play what was that teams record the year before they played them all the great teams in georgia florida alabama and they are traveling to ohio come on.I was told when buford had there long winning streak going they were offered to play brynes south carolina bufords coach wanted to do it they were going to get payed 10grand thehigh ups at buford stopped it because they were afraid the winning streak would be no more

bighoss

September 7th, 2013
12:49 pm

gainsville didnt show me nothing way over ranked lets see where they are rankedat the end of the year

Dylan

September 7th, 2013
3:24 pm

Buford doesn’t recruit. They don’t need to. The system for out-of-city athletes over there is if you qualify and meet grade requirements as well as pay tuition, you can go to Buford. So Buford doesn’t have to go out and recruit, the talent applies to Buford. They meet the requirements, are let in, and then flourish under magnificent coaching. Buford doesn’t buy championships, they’re paid for championships. No different than the likes of the countless private schools and city schools that hold trophies in every sport. Say what you want, but the athletes transferring to Buford in there freshman years are not born D1 athletes, they’re molded into them. Buford is a magnificent dynasty. There’s 1000 kids in the high school, yet they are able to win in almost any sport against great competition(Softball over 6A schools and Basketball over McEachern). Stop the hate and realize what is happening.

stands for decibels

September 7th, 2013
4:29 pm

What Dylan @ 3.24 says matches with what I know of BHS’ system–you can attend from out of city if you pay tuition, which some families do.

If that makes their competition butthurt, well, they can just deal.

Anyway, it is blood sport, and in about twenty years I imagine that American football will shrink significantly in popularity (to something like more of a curiosity, like pro boxing these days) as more and more families won’t want their kids playing it. Who knows. If believing that makes me a “hater,” I can live with that.

Canes Fan

September 7th, 2013
5:23 pm

So no one can image any Class AAA team capable of beating Buford?

Camden74

September 7th, 2013
5:37 pm

I’m sure there are 3A teams that can beat the former 2A bullies. Gainesville is basically a one man offense and I don’t know what the defense was doing last night. How they can be ranked # 1 in their classification is a mystery to me! :-)

Canes Fan

September 7th, 2013
10:33 pm

@Camden74. Agree entirely. Hopefully, we will see the Wolves again this year. But, we gotta take care of business first and just get better with each game. CanesNation!

Gridiron

September 8th, 2013
12:59 am

Buford should play those national High Schools that recruits all-star teams each year. Such as:

Hoover, AL
St. Thomas Aquinas, FL
John Curtis, LA
Byrnes, SC
Independence, NC
De La Salle, CA
Don Bosco Prep, NJ
Allen, TX
Brentwood Academy, TN

bighoss

September 8th, 2013
3:29 am

didnt buford girls softball lose to collins hill yesterday

Mountain Man

September 8th, 2013
8:01 am

Buford does recruit. Their qb lives in north hall area.His little brother plays basketball in Hall county. The qb travels all the way to gwinnett, does not pay school taxes in gwinnett, His dad coaches football in another state. He has no address in gwinnett. Now how is that right.

yo

September 8th, 2013
8:02 am

Now we know. It would be interesting to see just what kind of dynasty Buford fields with out all of those tuition paying players on the team. So Buford is basically a private school (if you can pay and if you can qualify) yet receiving public tax money.

Jimmy Payne

September 8th, 2013
8:16 am

All of this talk has been gone over a million times. Everyone involved with Buford will tell you they have an advantage. But it is not recruiting as dawgnation#1 so stupidly rants about. By the way, you are one Dawg fan I have no use for. You should be kicked out of the Dawgnation for stupidity alone. I would be willing to bet you didn’t even graduate from UGA, just a redneck hang around and bragger.

Let’s get back to the real deal at Buford. As Pooh says, the whole thing is location, facilities, class size, education, coaches and city officials. The city officials long ago decided that they would provide the best of everything they could to make their school system the best it could be. With the help of SPLOST dollars they were able to build first class facilities, hire top quality coaches, teachers and administrators all of which go together and have the same goal, excellence.

Buford is like a really good steak house. They don’t call you, they don’t send you advertisements, you know where they are and because the food is good you go there. Buford is probably the most watched team in the state as far as recruiting. Add to that the fact that they know what they have so they will bend over backwards to do things the right way if for no other reason than to not screw it up. The fact that they are actually straight up honest people also plays into it as well.

I guess the people who live in the area around Buford should be truly sorry to all of the people in small towns across GA because they have many school choices to choose from. One being Buford. Here are some other choices they have more of: theaters, McDonalds, Wendy’s, libraries, gas stations, super markets, girls, guys, guns.

Shame on you Buford for doing the best you can with all you have. Now, which Steak house are we going to for lunch?

Snoopy

September 8th, 2013
9:19 am

Jimmy Payne –

Told like a man & not the wimpy excuse makers that have NO clue!!

The ole adage of, “Build it & they will come”.. Applies to Academics, Arts & Athletics!!

The haters here should take their soon to be 6th grad children to the campus & see if they’d like to do better for their children..

It’s NOT all about sports, Stoooopid!!

Gridiron

September 8th, 2013
10:00 am

I have said for many year that Buford is a mediocre team playing without all the recruited players. Look what happened to Parkview H.S. when they stop recruiting.

So achieving 100 wins don’t mean a lot without cheating!

Jimmy Payne

September 8th, 2013
10:10 am

Gridiron, exactly how, who and when have they cheated. Now just the facts, not the silly, childish, whining, jealousy crap that you and those who are big to accuse but in reality know absolutely nothing about Buford and probably not even football.

Read my deal above. They don’t recruit, don’t have to. They simply do things the American way. Free choice, improve yourself, make things better for your kids, work hard, no it ain’t all fair, it ain’t suppose to be.

Good American, hard working people will always put their children in the best possible situation they can. I guess some of those who don’t just make childish accusations.

wolfbait 67

September 8th, 2013
12:27 pm

Camdumb74; I thought U were (was) a big 6 AAAAAA msn: You sure do read a lot of AA and AAA blogs not to know a thang about the real deal…I bet U R a real winner on fantasy football though….since that is where you spend so much time in ur mind….fantasy …good luck to U guys thoujgh, still a lot of football to pllay…hope the new Coach pans out for the Wildcats though

wolfbait 67

September 8th, 2013
12:35 pm

Canes fan……those Purple Hurricanes are the real deal also….saw ur scrimmage game against Woodland….ur QTRBK is as good as any in the state…would like for you guys to kook up with us in the semi-finals again (if we both make it) …Carver-Columbus and St. Pius look very strong this year also…safe travel and hope to see U guys come the end of November…keep the ship steady the next two months

wolfbait 67

September 8th, 2013
12:40 pm

Yo: It is the water, same river that flows thru Ho’tlanta…maybe that is why Carver-Columbus is so good …the same water….great conclusion….it is the water, fellas

wolfbait 67

September 8th, 2013
12:40 pm

Gridiron

September 8th, 2013
1:09 pm

Go read the GHSA rule book on student transferring JUST to play sports, it is illegal. Blow smoke and dress it up ever how you want too, it’s illegal and cheating!!

Jimmy Payne

September 8th, 2013
1:41 pm

Gridiron, again you have said nothing, proved nothing. You can transfer for whatever reason you want as long as it is within the rules.

One of the advantages to living in a county of 800,000 people is that you have choices. You choose to be ignorant and rant on about something you know nothing about. We have that choice in Gwinnett County as well.

Abe Lincoln once said “it is better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool than to open it and erase all doubt.” Hush.

JustAskin

September 8th, 2013
1:50 pm

Jimmy Payne, are you saying that each athlete that applies to Buford High School and lives outside the district pays their own tuition, probably$5,000 to $7,000, or are they granted assistance from the booster club or other school club?

Jimmy Payne

September 8th, 2013
2:38 pm

First of all it is $2,000.00 and I can tell you without any doubt no athlete or student gets his or her tuition paid for by the booster club or the school. That is why you see a lot of the students and their families move into the city limits.

Keep this in mind. No school is more heavily watched than Buford. No one. They bend over backwards to stay within the rules. They are first of all honest people but besides that they are also not stupid. When you have the situation they have you will not do anything wrong in any way to mess it up. That’s what kills me about all of these “they recruit and cheat fools”. They become dumb because their jealousy will not let them think clearly.

Canes Fan

September 8th, 2013
4:19 pm

@wolfbait 67. Thanks, we surely want another opportunity to play Burford. I personally am very tired of people making excuses for why certain programs are not as good as those that win. Great programs are simply going to attract players that want to play for good program, so ifthey want to do so, it is fine by me. Programs win not just because of the players; it takes a combination of coaching, school support, community support and along with the players that compete. I wouldnt have any other way to play good teams in AAA, ie Burford, St Pius, Blessed Trinity and Thomson.

Camden74

September 8th, 2013
5:58 pm

Wolfie wolfie wolfie…….First and foremost, I am a FOOTBALL FAN! I read about and watch football, from six man teams in Texas to the NFL. I don’t profess to know intimate details about every classification, but football is football, regardless of the level being played. There’s offense, defense and special teams at every level. One of these days the 2A bullies will meet their match. Then, you’ll be in hiding again! Oh, THANKS! The CATS will be fine! RELEASE the………..CAMDEN COUNTY WILDCATS!!!! :-D

ramwrek92

September 8th, 2013
8:08 pm

@Dylan, I think you just served to make everyone else’s point. Okay, Buford may not “recruit” because they don’t have to. It’s no secret that a successful program attracts players’ interest. And Buford is in a talent rich area (Gwinnett Co.) and because of the city rules they have the advantage of being able to “recruit” legally because they can accept virtually anyone no matter where they live within the county. Buford has good coaching, but don’t try to make it sound like they get the same kind and number of athletes as every other AAA school and are just better because they are coached up. You know better than that…

Jimmy Payne

September 8th, 2013
8:39 pm

ramwrekwhateveryear, point out to me where I said Buford gets the same kind and number of athletes as every other AAA school and are coached up. Never said that. You are like everyone else. You can’t get past the fact that all things aren’t fair. Buford has never claimed that they don’t have an advantage. What they have done is taken that advantage and run with it. What fool who was in charge of anything would not have done the same thing?

The administration and Dexter Wood should be proud. They have done one hell of a job.

Jimmy Payne

September 8th, 2013
8:47 pm

I am going to leave all of this to one last thing. Buford has an advantage. They don’t even try to deny that. They have taken that advantage and done what few probably could and would do. The fools who say they recruit are so short sighted that it is a joke.

You have an advantage, you have built something that may never be seen again and you result to cheating to get there and or stay there. Think about it. You were smart enough to get here and you are going to be stupid enough to lose it all by cheating. Come on man.

dawgnation#1

September 8th, 2013
11:03 pm

Payne…I didn’t graduate from UGA. I got my degree from Parris Island South Carolina. I also spent 8 years of my life giving people like you the right to have there own opinion, whether I agree with it or not. I could go on a rant about you and what you think of me but I won’t even stoop to your level. II’ll just leave you with Semper Fi …you may need one of us redneck hang around braggers one day.

Camden74

September 8th, 2013
11:53 pm

Payne……I guess honor and fair play really is dead, huh? :-)