Warner Robins, Northside, TCC are playoff locks from Regions 1 and 2

Today we continue our look at the playoff chances for Class AAAAA teams by focusing on Regions 1 and 2, which are home to perennial state powers Warner Robins, Northside-Warner Robins and Thomas County Central.

Which teams on the lists below are getting too much credit? Which ones are being underestimated?

Next week we’ll conclude our series with Regions 4 and 7.

Region 1-AAAAA

*Locks: Thomas County Central

Sixth-ranked Thomas County Central made the playoffs the past 22 seasons, so you can almost always pencil the Yellow Jackets in for a spot. They are the favorites to win the region title.

*Likely: Lee County, Harris County

Lee County seems a lock with its 6-0 record and No. 10 ranking, but the Trojans were 6-0 last year before losing three of four down the stretch and settling for the No. 4 seed. Still, Lee County probably needs just one more victory to return to the playoffs this season. Harris County, the defending champion, opens region play this week and could set itself up well with a victory against Bainbridge.

*On the bubble: Bainbridge, Hardaway

It appears that the fourth playoff spot will come down to Bainbridge and Hardaway, who are both 0-1 in region play after taking lopsided losses in their league openers last week. Bainbridge travels to Hardaway on Oct. 19 in the game that could decide the berth.

*Long shots: None

*Not this year: Northside-Columbus

The idea of Northside making the playoffs isn’t completely ridiculous, especially in a six-team region. But the Patriots are 1-4 overall, and the other five teams in the region are just better than they are, so it isn’t likely to happen this season.

Region 2-AAAAA

*Locks: Northside-Warner Robins, Warner Robins

Northside has won 24 consecutive region games, a streak that dates to a 21-20 loss to Warner Robins on Oct. 30, 2009. Warner Robins is 14-2 in region play since the start of the 2011 season, and both losses came against Northside. Yes, they will both make the playoffs, and the winner of their matchup on No. 1 will be the region champion.

*Likely: None

*On the bubble: Evans, Houston County, Jones County, Lakeside-Evans

These four teams are tied for third place at 1-1 in the region heading into the weekend, and only two of them will make the playoffs. All four have played one game against Northside or Warner Robins, and the closest was Evans’ 27-14 loss to Warner Robins two weeks ago. This week should tell us a lot, however, as Evans plays at Jones County and Lakeside plays at Houston County.

*Long shots: None

*Not this year: Grovetown, Greenbrier

Greenbrier is 0-5 this season and has not had a winning record since 2003. Grovetown is 1-4 overall and has given up at least 52 points in all four of its losses. Their matchup on Nov. 1 is likely to produce the only victory either team will get in region play.

46 comments Add your comment

Chris White

October 8th, 2013
4:29 pm

Thomas County Central has made the playoffs 22 straight years. What year do you think they didn’t? If you’re looking at 2004’s 4-6 record and thinking they didn’t make it, you’d be wrong. The 1st game of the season that year was canceled due to weather and never made up. The Jackets made the playoffs and lost to Griffin in the 1st round.

blu eagle

October 8th, 2013
8:15 pm

Do not sleep on NSWR, they still have a lot going for them, two good running backs and receivers and a stout defense.They are huge and talented on both sides of the ball.Thought they would not be there this year but the great tradition of winning and hard nosed football continue on!

Chip Saye

October 8th, 2013
9:02 pm

@Chris White … thanks for the correction. The change has been made.

WolfPack Nation

October 8th, 2013
9:19 pm

@Chip Saye

Can you tell us your prediction to win the state title this year?

JAB

October 9th, 2013
5:34 am

@ WolfPackNation, I can answer that for you! Stephenson Jaguars, hands down…!!!

SouthGARules

October 9th, 2013
8:11 am

Stephenson is the UGA of high school football. They send plenty of players to the next level, but never win anything!

JD

October 9th, 2013
9:05 am

Gainesville High Red Elephants will win it again.

TJ Morris

October 9th, 2013
12:24 pm

How bout them Northside Eaglesthey winning it this year I believe it. This team is the team just to many good coaches and too many good players.

5AReg6Fan

October 9th, 2013
1:08 pm

@WolfPack Nation – Of course JAB is wrong… it will be the Tucker Tigers…

What would be interesting, if the 2013 semi finals repeat the 2007 semi finals, the last time the GA Dome hosted the semi-final games, featuring Tucker, NSWR, TCC, & Ware. OK, not to disappoint JAB, we’ll let Stephenson have some say so. (LOL) The 2007 semi was ONE of the best in recent years for the second highest classification.

Good Luck to regions 1 & 2…

“WE ARE TUCKER” – The Tigers have been RELEASED!!!

REGION 6, the best in GA 2013 5A Football……

JAB

October 9th, 2013
2:00 pm

@ SouthGARules, your statement: “Stephenson is the UGA of high school football. They send plenty of players to the next level, but never win anything!” In a 17 year old school, after the 1st 2 years of playing a non region schedule, the Jaguars have made the playoff every year, either won their region in the highest classification or came in second place, have sent more players to college (D1) school then any other school in the state and never had a loosing season. @ I can’t understand why you guys keep saying they haven’t won anything. How many school can say this___________? I didn;t think so! What you are really saying is that, Stephenson hasn’t won a state championship yet. “This will be the year!” I wish AJC will do a article on news schools, their records, how many year they have had a winning record, look at the percentages & ratio’s in winning to loosing etc.

LET ME BREAK IT DOWN FOR YOU GUYS: TCC opene in 1958 has not won a state championship until 1992, 1993, 1994, 1996, and 1997 AAA state champion football team, but has had 22 years of making the playoffs. Tucker established in 1918 has not won it’s 1st state Football championship until 2008 & 2011, NSWR established in 1963. The Northside Eagles football team have had winning seasons for 12 consecutive years, they have been 146 – 15 from 1998 to present. From 1998 to 2005, the school had five teams go 10-0 in the regular season but falter in the playoffs. But in 2006 and 2007, the school broke through with consecutive 15-0 finishes in Class 4-A, and won two State Championships. I CAN GO ON! These are great accomplishments, but how many of them started off as a powerhouse??? I’ve talked to one of Stephenson players who was a D1 standout and played for the NFL, he’s is so grateful that he went to a school which helped him get to that level. Ever stop and think that’s why the 2 guys transfered to Stephenson? winning a state championship is great, but what happens after the season has ended and it’s time for signing day…

Ask any D1 from Stephenson how thankful they are by going to a school where the coaches care for them and work hard by helping them play at the next level, and ask all of the guys that are making big $$ now because of playing at Stephenson then playing on the next level in a D1 school. @ some of you guys act like Stephenson hasn’t done anything, do you realize that they lost to eventual state champions 4 times in the playoffs and that they had many heart break lost is the playoffs. yeah! I agree that coaching had a lot to do with it, but at the end of the day you can ask all of these school who constantly hiring coaches but can’t get a winning season. My hats goes off to coach Gartrell and the Stephenson High School Football staff for a job well done, for continuing to mentor & teach our young men to be productive and get the college exposure on D1 level.. GO JAGUARSSSSSS…

GO STEPHENSON JAGUARS AND REGION 6AAAAA, THE SEC OF HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL AND #1 IN THE STATE..

NOTE: I give credit to every team in our region and to all those who have won state championships***:)

Titletown USA

October 9th, 2013
3:00 pm

That is a pretty impressive post JAB….really puts it into perspective. I continue to wish that Valdosta would drop down to 5A and compete with these teams year in and year out.

JAB

October 9th, 2013
3:11 pm

@ Thanks Titletown USA for the love…:)

BcS2010

October 9th, 2013
3:52 pm

Stephenson sends it’s seniors to college yes and. That’s a great thing but let’s be real 95% of them never touch the field! Stephenson coach only has his job still because of college because Stephenson fans are tired or should be tired of having a top 5 team every year and find a way to lose smh… I’ve never seen fans who was happy to make the 3rd round. Stephenson called that a great year. Us tucker fans call that a disappointing year

stephensonfinest

October 9th, 2013
5:43 pm

Bcs2010..tell me where yu get the figure of 95 percent dont see the field. .please give your source
Stephenson is the way the truth and the light amen
STATE IS STEPHENSON THUS SAYITH THE LORD

True Blue

October 9th, 2013
6:20 pm

BCS2010, why hate and tell lies 95% really. Someone is always hating on another man accomplizhments. Where do you get your report from, because i see former players playing and starting in the SEC. In fact not just Stephenson, i see players from other metro atlanta schools playing in tge SEC, but not Tucker

True Blue

October 9th, 2013
6:23 pm

My fault i forgot about the linebackef that played at the Park and now playing for Vandy

BcS2010

October 9th, 2013
7:39 pm

@True Blue…..not tucker??? the last time I checked Justin Garrett was starting at safety for the Auburn Tigers, James Vaughters Starts for Stanford also! lol of course my 95% isn’t accurate im just saying things that I feel like you Stephenson bloggers do all the time lol yall never state facts!! the only one who ever has facts is JAB and that’s hardly ever lol. The fact is Stephenson players are overrated. There really not tho this shows why they don’t win state. I love how playing for Stephenson will get you into college but its overrated. One year yall had 26 seniors sign like there are only 22 starters lol but that’s a great thing Stephenson does. But the Stephenson players who are normally ranked high are bust!! what ever happen to mike Thornton at uga? or willie davis? the only player now that has any success in college is mike davis! lol Stephenson is the UGA of high school football its the truth

BcS2010

October 9th, 2013
7:43 pm

sory I forgot Raymond sanders starts for kentucky

DeeDawg

October 9th, 2013
8:57 pm

Miami Hurricanes has 2 defensive staters from Stephenson (Kirby & Cornelius). Kadetrix Marcus is starting safety for South Carolina. These are just the ones I saw on TV saturday.

DeeDawg

October 9th, 2013
9:05 pm

Stephenson grad Kenny Ladler is a 4-year starting safety at Vanderbilt. His younger brother is already lighting it up as a sophomore at Stephenson. Looks like those D1 Stephenson prospects hit the field quite a bit BcS2010. Many others are just freshmen in college.

BcS2010

October 9th, 2013
9:13 pm

That’s 5 people out if around 75 people..

DeeDawg

October 9th, 2013
9:24 pm

Wow! Thanks BcS2010, didn’t know that…75 scholarships in this tough economy! Not bad for a young program. How many for tucker?

True Blue

October 9th, 2013
9:28 pm

James play in the Pac 12 not the SEC. Ronnie Shields UK, Preston Wilson MSU, and the linebacker for Vandy play alot along side of the Tucker linebacker. I can’t think of his name. Dont get me wrong Tucker has alot of talent but they do a poor job helping everybody get scholarships but always bragging about a state championship. Last i heard college wasnt Free unless you earned a full scholarship. Partial and half help too. Its all business helping everybody go to school FREE at SHS that’s their Goal every season to have the entire senior class to sign a LOI on Signing Day.

JAB

October 9th, 2013
9:29 pm

@ BcS2010, please don’t post anything that you have any facts about. 95% dude, you are very illiterate with your source; please state your facts and what you mean that Stephenson coach only has his job because of college? Don’t really understand what you mean but, Dekalb county hire certified teacher’s first and they get a stipend for coaching, so you talking all of this no nonsense over this blog is pathetic.

Also, BcS2010 your statement “I’ve never seen fans who was happy to make the 3rd round. Stephenson called that a great year. Us tucker fans call that a disappointing year.” Okay Tucker been in existence since 1918 (that’s 95 years), but only won 2 state championships, so that’s 93 years of disappointments Lol., Man Please! Stop making Tucker look bad, you too funny man; another thing like I said, Stephenson must have an addicted program because why would players from one top program transfer over to another cross town rival program.

Lastly bro. keep the trash talk to trash talk but don’t go into degrading players & coaches especially if you are just talking from the top of your head and don’t have no facts my friend! Now get ready to experience all those D1 players on this years 2013 edition of Stephenson jaguars, as they pound of Tucker’s head this coming Friday…!!!

GO STEPHENSON JAGUARS AND REGION 6AAAAA, THE SEC OF HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL & #1 IN THE STATE…

Hickory Dickory Doc
Tucker & Stephenson do rock
The tigers did knock on the door
but still could not score
Hickory Dickory Doc

Hickory Dickory Doc
Tucker is #1 “NOT”
they thought they will win
but Stephenson beat them again
Hickory Dickory Doc

True Blue

October 9th, 2013
9:33 pm

Everybody can’t playin the NFL, but everybody can graduate and GET THAT DEGREE, because that what went to school for to Better Ourselves in the America Working World

InformedObserver

October 9th, 2013
10:37 pm

Great commentary @BcS2010, @JAB and @True Blue. I admire what coach Gartrell has done at Stephenson relative to getting his boys into college, D1 or otherwise. I also hope more coaches follow his lead. That has to be admired, appreciated and held in the highest regard.

I wouldn’t knock the other coaches just yet or any of the other well run programs, especially Tucker. I know first hand that they have players attending some very difficult schools to get into academically like Harvard, Notre Dame, Stanford, etc. These kids should be praised and their respective programs supported. I have met many HS coaches in GA including Gartrell, Lamar of Tucker, Maloof of Norcross, Godfrey from SWD, Stephens formerly Tucker and now Lamar Cty. as well as Teague at Carrollton to name a few and I have never met a coach who wasn’t trying to get his players recognized at the college recruiting level. The best athletes will get into a school regardless of where they play HS football and the more academically prepared athletes write their own tickets. A coach really doesn’t have to work hard in these cases. However, any coach having a highly sought after student/athlete will benefit from the exposure it brings to his program/school and that coach can use that opportunity to start a relationship with that recruiter, college coach and school. Gartrell had to start from somewhere to get to where he is now. Give the young aspiring, but already very good coaches like Lamar, Tanks, etc. time; if they stick around as long as Gartrell, they’ll do like he has or even better. I know that back in the day, Godfrey was looked at the very same way. Let’s not forget that it was he who paved the way for DeKalb with renowned SWD programs before the demographic shifts that resulted in new schools like Stephenson being built in the area. You must admit that Stephenson has benefitted from being the “new and bigger” school like MLK (who also has done a fine job getting young men into colleges) once those institutions were built.

Here is where we need to get into our young men’s heads; getting into a D1 school is a fantastic thing but if they only attend long enough to help that institution’s financial growth by busting their asses day in and day out, showcasing their talents during the fall while risking uninsured injuries and not graduating in the end, they are wasting precious time. This is where we are falling short as a community. I am aware that 1% or less of these boys may get a shot at the pros, but those careers while exciting are usually extremely short and not guaranteed. So @True Blue, I fully agree with you that the focus needs to be getting a degree to help prepare these kids for life after football. Teach them now to use this vehicle called football (or any sport) to help them get “THEIRS”. It’s the least they can do after years of 5am weight lifting and running coupled with summer long practices, and the bangs and bruises that come with the preparation needed to play at a high level.

Didn’t mean to get so serious, but we have to keep this in our boy’s heads. At the same time, lets support the Gartrells, Lamars, etc. because at the end of the day, they all want to create successful programs that produce great young men who will positively contribute to society and make their own way to a better life.

Buy the way, on Oct. 11th, Tucker 35, Stephenson 12!!

Jusfellofftheturniptruck

October 10th, 2013
1:59 am

Ever notice how almost every AAAAA blog results in intense battles of dekalb posters?

JAB

October 10th, 2013
4:45 am

@ InformedObserver, very good interesting post, I’ve always considered the legendary coach Godfrey the dean of coaches in Dekalb. @ Jusfellofftheturniptruck, get a life, these blogs are open to anybody who has a computer and can peck keystrokes, we can’t help if other schools isn’t posting on the blogs. It just mean maybe that we (Dekalb) either just take pride & love our HS Football program and or others around the state simply don’t like blogging. You have the opportunity to uplift your programs as well as us, these blogs are fun, entertaining, educational as you see and hater’s like you….!!!!

GO STEPHENSON JAGUARS AND REGION 6AAAAA, THE SEC OF HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL & #1 IN THE STATE…

Hickory Dickory Doc
Tucker & Stephenson do rock
The tigers did knock on the door
but still could not score
Hickory Dickory Doc

Hickory Dickory Doc
Tucker is #1 “NOT”
they thought they will win
but Stephenson beat them again
Hickory Dickory Doc

JAB

October 10th, 2013
5:10 am

NOTE: Much love to you though! @ InformedObserver, check your computer bro. you type the wrong outcome, I think you meant Stephenson 35 Tucker 12 :)

GO STEPHENSON JAGUARS AND REGION 6AAAAA, THE SEC OF HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL & #1 IN THE STATE…

Hickory Dickory Doc
Tucker & Stephenson do rock
The tigers did knock on the door
but still could not score
Hickory Dickory Doc

Hickory Dickory Doc
Tucker is #1 “NOT”
they thought they will win
but Stephenson beat them again
Hickory Dickory Doc

BcS2010

October 10th, 2013
7:07 am

Lol I knew my post would make y’all comment lol but really I do think that Stephenson has a great program I really do feel like with all the talent they should win! It’s that simple they need a ring! And tomorrow it’s going down!! Tucker by double digits!!

True Blue

October 10th, 2013
8:16 am

Informedobserver, Tucker have 2 players attendiing Stanford and Harvard nobody at Notre Dame. And it ain’t like Stephenson don’t send players to academic schools. But getting back to the game if you can’t pass it will be a long night. I dont see Tucker running on Stephenson defense. It will be a Defense Game, because team are sound on defense. The only Stephenson have lost games in the past was because they had a hard time defending the pass and i know Tucker can’t pass. So that sound like Tucker is in Trouble.

WolfPack Nation

October 10th, 2013
8:50 am

None of these teams can pass (region6AAAAA)… They play in the trenches and are very predictable. They’ll do a bunch set off the side that they will run on. They tell you they are running! It’s just they are so big and fast it’s hard to stop them in the 4th! They wear you down physically! You got to get up atleast 2-3 touchdowns by the 4th in order to have a chance. Because the offense runs the ball and waste too much time to play catch up. If you get a stop you must capitalize and keep the momentum! These dekalb kids are freaks when it comes to pure speed. If you want to beat them in playoffs, that’s the secret! You must pass, stay away from the run! Stephenson is a pound it up the middle team and Tucker likes to utilize their speed and bounce it outside. Easier said than done of course. I look forward to the results of the Tucker vs Stephenson game. And all the late night blogs after the game! As for me I have Stephenson 31 Tucker 24. Good luck to everyone this week!

DeeDawg

October 10th, 2013
8:55 am

I would argue we region AAAAA Region 6 bloggers are the most passionate, consistent smacktalkers on here! I noticed ENR is laying low this year for whatever reason. He/she used to jump in with well researched comments about NSWR. Bottom line, Stephenson, Tucker, MLK, & Mays play some of the best high school football anywhere. Anywho, see ya after Stephenson whips Tucker …AGAIN!

RealisticFan

October 10th, 2013
8:59 am

My weekly Reg5 Picks:

South Pauldimg takes its frustration of last weeks loss to North out by handing New Manchester it’s 4th straight loss. South by 14

Paulding County gets another win and hands Wooldand it’s 6 straight shutout loss. Woodland has been out scored 233 to 3 this year. Look for a 24-0 score or worse.

Villa Rica over hapless Lithia Springs by 17

East Paulding offense goes over 40 points for the first time this year as QB Webb issues a warning to the Region to not fully write them off. Improvement every week and a healthy leader along with the early season dose of humble pie make for a dangerous team down the stretch. East over Hiram by 6 tds

North Paulding, new darlings of the Region, prove their mettle and take down a proud and improved Rome club on the road avenging last years 57-56 loss.

Allatoona is off.

Reg6 Special Pick

Stephenson 28, Tucker 21. Not an upset just two good teams going at it. (It this was a playoff game my prediction would be reversed)

WolfPack Nation

October 10th, 2013
9:03 am

As for the scholarships to academic schools… I do believe the magic gpa is 2.5 in order to get a D1 scholarship. These schools do not recruit based on academics, if you have higher than that 2.5 and are good enough to earn a scholarship they will offer! Ivy League is a different story… Most West Coast schools don’t offer East coast players. They are at a big diss advantage with the SEC and ACC schools all close to home and easy travel for the parents. The distance is a big role for these kids and their parents as they want to see their kids. If my kid was offered from PAC-12 schools and SEC or any east coast schools, I would eliminate the West Coast schools. Might sound harsh but you raised him. Would you rather him go to a equally good school closer to home and easy to visit for holidays and such or let him go far away and only see him once or twice a year? Regardless to letting him grow up, you know as a parent you do not want him to leave and go that far.

WolfPack Nation

October 10th, 2013
9:13 am

@RealisticFan,

Awesome picks, glad to see a fellow region 5AAAAA blogger! As for the East vs Hiram game, East putting up 40 is not a shot to the region. Everyone who has played Hiram has put up 40+. Regardless, East has proven dangerous down the stretch.

RealisticFan

October 10th, 2013
9:25 am

@Wolfpack Nation

Actually only your North team has scored more than 40 against Hiram (54). Beyond that they have given up 6,35, 22 and 19 respectively. My Point being that East’s stagnant offense without its QB most of the season has its best showing of the season. Combined with the best defense in the region and you have different team then North Beat in week 1. And yes I believe North has improved since then as well.

RealisticFan

October 10th, 2013
9:55 am

Past two years first round matchups of Regions 5,6,7 & 8

2011-

Reg5, 3-1 over Reg6
Reg8, 3-1 over Reg7

2012
Reg5, 3-1 over Reg8
Reg6, 3-1 over Reg7

2013 predictions

Reg5, 3-1 over Reg7
Reg6, 3-1 over Reg8 ……this might go 2-2

WolfPack Nation

October 10th, 2013
12:37 pm

@RealisticFan, Hiram’s defense is averaging 30 points given up a game. I think east will win big! What are our playoff games? Like what seed from what region will us Region 5AAAAA likely to face?

RealisticFan

October 10th, 2013
1:21 pm

Reg5 plays Reg7 this year. The only really strong team will be Kell as their #1 seed. Other likely playoff on contenders from that region are Pope, Creekview, Sequoyah and Northview. Kell will draw our Reg5 4th seed and that is the only likely loss for our Reg(IMHO).

WolfPack Nation

October 10th, 2013
1:28 pm

How do you find that info?

SWGA

October 10th, 2013
2:56 pm

The football playoff brackets on on GHSA.net website. Here is the link:

http://www.ghsa.net/2013-2014-ghsa-class-aaaaa-state-football-championship-bracket

RealisticFan

October 10th, 2013
3:01 pm

@Wolfpack Nation

Several different good sources.

Ga.prepcountry.com (lots of good stuff)
Ghsa.net (past brackets)
Ghsfha.org (history and records by team)

RealisticFan

October 10th, 2013
3:10 pm

And one last site that is a lot of fun is:

http://www.usatodayhss.com/massey-matchups/

You can compare teams from different classes, states and years. Fun to see how the NSWR 2005 team would stack up against Moeller HS from Cimcinnati, or Valdosta vs Hoover HS. It’s a hoot.

Reeze

October 10th, 2013
3:58 pm

@True Blue………I have to respectfully disagree with you……The Jags are the ones in trouble , not Tucker…..Tucker plays with intensity from the first snap to the last……The most intense team we’ ve (NSWR) played over the years IMO…..To beat the Tigers you must have a good passing attack ,speed around the corners and power up the middle , a complete offense…..Maybe not the best assessment of the Jags, The game against SWD , convienced me that Tucker wins by 2 TD’s plus……It may just be a defensive battle ,.. up until the 3rd…….Tucker walks away with the game mid 3rd…….38- 21 Tucker

Old Bear

October 12th, 2013
5:58 am

My alma mater isn’t even in this classification, but I give props to Stephenson for getting their kids into college on such a large and consistent basis. Forget about how many go on to college or NFL stardom – the idea is to get these young men a chance to earn a university/college degree. What with the prohibitive cost of getting those degrees without financial assistance, I commend Stephenson for making it easier for their students. Only one school per year per classification (about 70 schools per classification) can be state champion – to infer that all of the other schools that DIDN’T win a championship yet made the playoffs are somehow inferior or mediocre is asinine. Hell, I’m for ANY program that can get their kids to continue their education (with or without financial assistance). Isn’t that the ultimate goal of our high schools, after all?
.