In This Issue
2018 CORKY KELL SPRING PREVIEWS: COLQUITT COUNTY VS. MCEACHERN; WEEK 11 LACROSSE RANKINGS
Alpharetta 1, Harrison 0
Athens Academy 1, Savannah Country Day 0
Blessed Trinity 10, Sandy Creek 0
Bremen 7, Lumpkin County 6
Calvary Day 3, Prince Avenue 2
Carrollton 1, Grady 0
Chamblee 1, Johnson-G'ville 0
Columbus 10, Salem 0
Creekview 1 (3), Dunwoody 1 (1)
Decatur 5, Buford 1
Eagles Landing Christian 4 (7), Brookstone 4 (6)
East Laurens 6, Thomasville 0
Elbert County 10, Spencer 0
First Presbyterian 4, Atlanta International 0
Fitzgerald 4, Johnson-Augusta 2
Flowery Branch 5, Riverwood 2
Glynn Academy 2, Heritage-Conyers 0
Grayson 2, West Forsyth 1
Greenbrier 4, Lee County 1
Grovetown 1, Effingham County 0
Harlem 1, Vidalia 0
Hillgrove 3, Camden County 1
Islands 8, Worth County 0
Jackson Co. 2, Pace Academy 1
Johns Creek 2, Alexander 0
Lakeside-DeKalb 1 (5), Richmond Hill 1 (4)
Lamar County 4, Rabun County 1
Lassiter 5, Campbell 0
Lovett 3, Greater Atl. Christian 1
Marist 3, LaGrange 0
McIntosh 10, Harris County 0
Milton 1, Brookwood 0
Model 4, Callaway 3
Mt. Pisgah Christian 4, Lakeview Academy 0
Northside-Col. 5, Druid Hills 1
Oglethorpe County 11, Temple 1
Parkview 2, Forsyth Central 0
Peachtree Ridge 6, Rockdale County 0
Pierce County 4, Rutland 1
Pike County 10, Long County 0
Pinecrest Academy 3, Hebron Christian 0
Pope 2, Northgate 1
Roswell 7, Tift County 1
Savannah Arts 3, Crisp County 1
Spalding 5, Eastside 0
St. Pius X 4, Cartersville 0
St. Vincents 10, Screven County 0
Starr's Mill 2, Veterans 1
Walker 5, Towns County 0
Walton 3, East Coweta 0
Wesleyan 3, Paideia 2
Westminster 8, Dawson County 0
White County 0 (5), Northwest Whitfield 0 (4)
Whitewater 5, Statesboro 0
Woodward Academy 2, Mary Persons 1
Greater Atlanta Christian 7, Buford 5
CORKY KELL CLASSIC
By Seth Ellerbee
Sat., Aug. 18 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium
2:45 p.m. Colquitt County vs. McEachern
COLQUITT COUNTY SPRING PREVIEW
Rush Propst's Colquitt County Packers will enter spring practice looking to ease the pain of last year's state-title loss on a last-second field goal from North Gwinnett following a penalty that allowed the Bulldogs excellent late-game field position.
"We have kind of a sour taste in our mouths," said Propst of last year's finish. "There is a fire in our belly and a determination in our kids. But at the end of the day, all that is only good offseason talk. When you get in that week of preparation for a football game, you hone in on the scheme, you hone in on personnel and matchups and all the things that come along with winning a football game. You just have to settle in and play the game, too."
Last year, the Packers opened with a victory over Norcross 20-17 in the Corky Kell Classic at Georgia State Stadium in Atlanta. Colquitt carried that momentum through the next three games before falling to Brookwood 43-25 on the road. The Packers struggled through arguably the toughest region in the state and fell to Tift County and Lowndes to close their regular season 7-3.
||Daijun Edwards. Credit: Branden Camp/AJC
Once in the playoffs, the Packers were forced to go on the road for each game. Not bothered, however, Colquitt moved through Pebblebrook 49-7 before facing an undefeated Walton team. The Packers earned the quarterfinal berth with a 28-21 victory over the Raiders, and Archer was next. Colquitt kept momentum and control throughout the game and walked away with a 12-7 victory that set up a rematch with Brookwood in the semis. Following the 31-14 victory over the Broncos, Colquitt, as the No. 3 seed from Region 1-AAAAAAA, earned a berth in the state title game against North Gwinnett.
But that was last year. This season, Colquitt will use spring practice to find a replacement for Steven Krajewski, who passed for 2,395 yards and 23 touchdowns and rushed for 199 yards and 13 touchdowns.
"We have a hole to fill, we do," said Propst. "I have a lot of confidence in the kid we got. He's an in-house kid who's come up through our system. But for Jaycee Harden, well, it's his job to lose. He's the older kid and he's a starter in baseball. I've always said that, if you go back and look at the draft, about 80 or 90 percent of the first-round picks were multi-sport athletes, and he is. We believe in the dual-sport athletes, especially at the quarterback position. He has the heart of a champion and understands our system."
For Colquitt, depth is everywhere: offense, defense and special teams.
In the backfield, star running back Ty Leggett (5-foot-10, 172 pounds) returns and will likely improve upon his numbers from the runner-up season. Last season, Leggett rushed for 1,287 yards and 12 touchdowns on 206 carries. If Leggett is tied up, another option on the ground is rising junior Daijun Edwards.
"Not only Ty Leggett," Propst said. "We have the No. 1 running back prospect in the state of Georgia in the 2020 class. I don't know a running back in the state of Georgia better than him, Edwards. We really have a one-two punch there, Leggett being the senior leader and Division 1 prospect. So we really have two really good backs. We are deep at the running back spot."
Edwards is rated as a 4-star recruit by 247Sports. The 5-11, 205-pound running back also had impressive numbers, rushing for 1,038 yards and 13 touchdowns on 176 carries in 2017. He's rated as the 20th-best running back in the state according to 247.
The receiver corps will need to fill the void left by Cam Singletary's graduation. Last year, Singletary caught 79 passes for 1,025 yards and 11 touchdowns. Three rising seniors could help fill the spot - K.T. Wilson caught 24 passes for 356 yards and five touchdowns last year. Marvion McDonald had 19 catches for 230 yards and two touchdowns, and Josh Hadley caught 16 passes for 207 yards and two touchdowns.
"Receiver-wise, we have both of our starters back in Marvion McDonald and K.T. Wilson," Propst said. "But we have other guys that are young guys that are really, really talented players, really good athletes, long, fast and athletic. Our inside slot receivers, we have Tyrik Williams and Tyler Walker, who was ineligible last year. His cousin is at Arkansas. So, we have some kids who were ineligible who moved in and they'll be playing."
On defense, rising senior Rashad Revels returns and will add to his numbers this season. Last year, Revels, a 6-0, 183-pound linebacker, made 104 solo tackles with 97 assists for 201 total tackles. Marcus Anderson, a 5-11, 200-pound middle linebacker, made 82 solo tackles with 66 assists for 148 total tackles. Corner Jay Ward (6-1, 175 pounds) has been offered by Appalachian State, Georgia State, Georgia Southern and Kentucky to name a few. NyQuann Washington (5-11, 170 pounds) is also a threat to opposing quarterbacks with his athleticism and knack for interceptions.
"I think defensively we are as deep as we've ever been," said Propst. "We have guys everywhere. It's really a pleasure to have what we've got, athletes all over the field. Jay Ward has been offered by everybody at corner. He's a 6-2 corner that can play and had four picks in the playoffs last year. NyQuann Washington is going to be a rising junior and he had five picks in the playoffs. That's nine picks between our corners. We look for them to do good things this year."
Colquitt County's 2018 Schedule
8/18 at McEachern (Mercedes-Benz Stadium)
8/25 vs. Trinity Catholic, MO
8/31 vs. Thomasville
9/07 vs. Valdosta
9/14 at Warner Robins (MT)
9/21 at Grayson
9/28 vs. Alcovy
10/12 vs. Camden County
10/19 at Tift County
10/26 vs. Lowndes
MCEACHERN SPRING PREVIEW
After graduating 18 players from last year's lineup, McEachern will be relying on returning experience from its semifinal appearance last season to kick-start the 2018 season. The Indians will capture the 400th victory in school history with whomever they beats next.
In 2017, McEachern opened its season with a 23-19 loss to Mill Creek in the Corky Kell Classic at Georgia State Stadium. The next week it fell to Grayson 12-7 then reeled off seven wins in a row, before falling to Hillgrove in the final game of the regular season 14-7.
Entering the playoffs, the Indians moved past Etowah 39-7 and then defeated the No. 1 team in the state, Lowndes, 36-31. Their 43-28 victory over Parkview in the quarterfinals set up a semifinal game with North Gwinnett. McEachern fell short 38-17, but the experience for its younger players last season will be paramount this year.
On the offensive side of the ball, McEachern will be looking to develop depth around key positions. In last year's campaign, sophomore quarterback Carlos Delrio-Wilson led the Indians, and he will return this season looking to improve his numbers. Delrio-Wilson, as a freshman, started all four playoff games last year and led the charge over Lowndes in the second round.
"Our young quarterback made a pretty big impression on us and did a nice job leading and getting the victory down in Lowndes and making some plays," said head coach Kyle Hockman. "His youth and inexperience kind of showed in the semifinals but Carlos is going to be a heck of a player so obviously we are building around that. But his mentality is 'I know I can do it' not 'I think I can do it.' So he is going into his sophomore year with the mentality of 'I know I can do it.' He knows he has the talent to make a run and it's given him a lot of confidence. He leads the team, he gets the wideouts out there to throw in the offseason and all of that kind of stuff. Last year was a special time for him and it's nice to know who your guy is going into the offseason."
Two-time all-state running back Paris Brown will look to add to his totals this season. The 5-foot-10, 198-pound back rushed for 1,182 yards on 187 carries with 14 touchdowns in 2017. He rushed for almost 1,100 yards in 2016. He's received offers from Kansas, Kentucky, Iowa State and Ball State, to name a few.
"Paris Brown is our bell cow at running back," Hockman said. "But we are really excited and have some talented, strong, fast guys."
Helping the ground game will be Jordan Simmons, a backup running back who had significant carries and special teams plays in the 2017 run.
Delrio-Wilson's targets in 2018 will be Javon Baker, Brandon Christy and Valerian Agbaw. Baker, a 6-foot-1, 175-pound athlete, has offers from Florida, Auburn, Arkansas, Kentucky and more. Christy is a 6-3, 185-pound receiver who'll return to his starting role. Agbaw, a 5-11, 180-pounder, had a handful of big plays last season and will likely factor in more this year.
The offensive line is anchored by Nyles Moore, a 6-1, 285-pound offensive guard, Mark Bennett, a 6-0, 275-pound center and Taylor Hogan-Beck, a 6-1, 250-pound lineman.
On the defensive side, Jeffrey Clark and Jamil Burroughs are big playmakers who will impact opposing offensive lines all season. Both tackles, Clark (5-11, 275 pounds) and Burroughs (6-2, 280 pounds) will lead the defensive line. Myles Henderson, a part-time pass-rush specialist in 2017, will be back to factor in this year. Nassir Curry-Sudler adds agility to the defensive backfield and has several big offers. Stephen Benn is an emerging linebacker and a solid special-teams player. Isaiah Byrd and Nathaniel Dent will return in the defensive backfield.
"Clark and Jamil are playmakers," Hockman said. "Jamil is a little bit bigger but Jeffrey is going to be a senior and really going to be a part. We will build around those guys. And obviously, like on offense, there are a lot of role players who will have to step in to be the player. You are always concerned to see how guys go, you know, can they handle the starting role and the limelight and can they still work hard. We will build around our D-line and we have some good secondary guys and linebackers."
Arinze Okwu, a 5-11, 214-pound linebacker, will also factor in on the defensive side.
"He started and played a lot for us at different times of the year," Hockman said of his senior linebacker. "But again, now he's got to be the guy making the calls. All of the calls. And we will see how all of that develops but we are certainly excited about it."
McEachern's 2018 Schedule
8/18 vs. Colquitt County (Mercedes-Benz Stadium)
8/24 vs. South Cobb
9/07 vs. Cedar Grove
9/14 vs. Collins Hill
9/21 at East Coweta
10/05 at Hillgrove
10/12 vs. Marietta
10/19 vs. Kennesaw Mountain
10/26 at North Cobb
11/02 vs. North Paulding
By Craig Sager
Final regular-season rankings see top teams still going strong
The no. 1 ranked Lambert boys capped off their perfect season with a 14-3 win over West Forsyth, but North Gwinnett missed out on perfection after dropping its final regular season contest to Milton (6-5 OT). The Bulldogs were replaced by defending state champion Lassiter at No. 2. Walton jumped to No. 6 and Roswell fell to No. 9 after falling 7-6 to Northview and 7-3 to No. 8 Etowah. In boys Class A-5A, the poll remained the same
1. Lambert (17-0)
2. Lassiter (13-4)
3. North Gwinnett (15-1)
4. Centennial (16-2)
5. Johns Creek (13-4)
6. Walton (13-4)
7. Cambridge (12-6)
8. Etowah (13-5)
9. Roswell (11-5)
10. Grayson (13-5)
1. Westminster (13-5)
2. Kell (13-2)
3. Lovett (12-5)
4. Greater Atlanta Christian (14-3)
5. Blessed Trinity (14-3)
6. Starr's Mill (16-2)
7. Woodward Academy (13-3)
8. Pace Academy (13-4)
9. Marist (11-5)
10. Wesleyan (11-5)
In Class 6A-7A, top-ranked Milton scored a 19-4 win over Lambert to close the regular season with a perfect 9-0 record against Georgia competition, while No. 2 Lassiter defeated neighboring Pope 16-3 to finish its regular season 8-0 against instate opponents. Mill Creek defeated Walton 13-10 to jump the Raiders for No. 6. In Class A-5A, Starr's Mill replaced Kell at No. 3 and sent the Longhorns to No. 4. McIntosh, which lost 13-6 to Starr's Mill last week rounds out the top 5.
1. Milton (13-5)
2. Lassiter (14-2)
3. West Forsyth (15-3)
4. Cambridge (14-4)
5. Johns Creek (11-3)
6. Mill Creek (13-5)
7. Walton (9-8)
8. Centennial (15-1)
9. Northview (11-6)
10. Alpharetta (11-6)
1. Blessed Trinity (16-2)
2. Wesleyan (15-3)
3. Starr's Mill (15-2)
4. Kell (11-7)
5. McIntosh (10-8)
6. Westminster (7-9-1)
7. Pinecrest Academy (13-3)
8. Marist (10-5)
9. Fellowship Christian (12-6)
10. Greater Atlanta Christian (9-7)