• Updating the top 10 after several top teams lose

    By: Todd Holcomb/AJC.com


    The Atlanta Journal-Constitution's staff is not used to underrating Camden County in preseason, but that was some performance Saturday at the Georgia Dome – 42-0 over Peachtree Ridge. PeaRidge returned its front seven on defense, so not many saw that coming.

    Two 2011 state champions lost in the first weekend – Burke County (to Thomson) and Savannah Christian (to Jenkins). Three teams ranked No. 2 lost – Burke, Colquitt County (to North Gwinnett) and ELCA (to Washington County).

    Upcoming –

    Grayson vs. Central of Miami on Friday. Grayson is No. 1 in the ESPN rankings. Central is No. 1 in USA Today.

    Six games match two state-ranked teams –

    Blessed Trinity at Lovett
    Buford at Elbert County
    Colquitt County at Thomas County Central
    Northside (Warner Robins) at Flowery Branch
    St. Pius at Westminster
    Wilkinson County at Wilcox County

    Here are 13 more games that caught my eye to give us a 20 best. (Who did we miss?)

    Baldwin at Jefferson County
    Brunswick at Glynn Academy
    Coffee at Ware County
    Griffin at Dutchtown
    LaGrange at Newnan
    Lassiter vs. Hillgrove
    Marist at Clarke Central
    Mary Persons at Jackson
    Milton at Alpharetta
    Newton at Eastside
    Thomasville at Cairo
    Walton at McEachern
    West Forsyth at Gainesville

    Might as well add these six between good Georgia and good out-of-state teams –

    Vanguard, Fla. at Camden County
    Valdosta vs. North Augusta, S.C.
    A.C. Flora, S.C. at North Gwinnett
    Pine Forest, Fla. at Stephenson
    ELCA at Briarwood Christian, Ala.
    Oxford, Ala. vs. Carrollton

    Changes in the rankings …

    Lincoln County is the new No. 1 in Class A. No. 1 Savannah Christian fell to No. 10. No. 4 Landmark fell to No. 9. No. 2 ELCA dropped one spot after its loss to a ranked AAA team. Calvary Day entered at No. 7. Darlington dropped out (lost to a Tennessee state champion). … Colquitt dropped from No. 2 to No. 7 in AAAAAA. Burke County dropped from No. 2 to No. 8 in AAAA. … Cedar Grove dropped out of AAA, replaced by Jackson.

    Class AAAAAA

    1. Grayson (1-0)

    Last week: Beat McEachern 31-12. Grayson rushed for 314 yards and won without completing either of its pass attempts in winning its 16th consecutive game. Jordan Germany rushed for 81 yards on 11 carries for Grayson, and his 34-yard TD run in the fourth quarter iced the game. David Fennell had 75 yards on 16 carries. McEachern QB Tymashian Clemons rushed for 108 yards, including a 79-yard scoring run in the first quarter, and passed for 102. Grayson, which allowed 38 yards per game rushing in 2011, gave up 165 against the Indians. Next: Friday vs. Miami Central, Fla. (0-0)

    2. Camden County (1-0)

    Last week: Beat Peachtree Ridge 42-0. It was the most lopsided score in Corky Kell Classic history. Brice Ramsey was 6-for-9 passing for 132 yards and three touchdowns. J.J. Green rushed for 85 yards on eight carries, scored two touchdowns and forced a fumble. Travis Johnson and Conner Lockhart had two sacks each. Next: Friday vs. Vanguard, Fla. (0-0)

    3. Walton (1-0)

    Last week: Beat Brookwood 35-24. Tyren Jones rushed for 303 yards and five touchdowns on 30 carries. Three of his scores covered 48 yards or more. Walton LB Blake Montz had four sacks. Jamaal Cole rushed for 167 yards for Brookwood. Next: Friday at McEachern (0-1)

    4. Lassiter (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Hillgrove (1-0) at McEachern

    5. North Gwinnett (1-0)

    Last week: Beat Colquitt County 16-14. North Gwinnett’s Michael D’Angola made a 34-yard field goal as time expired. North Gwinnett QB Michael Haynes was 13-of-20 passing for 125 yards in his first start. He also rushed for 51 yards. His 22-yard run to the Colquitt County 11 set up the game-winning field goal. Donnie Miles, a North Carolina commit, scored on a 77-yard run for a 13-8 lead in the third quarter. The victory avenged at 17-7 loss to Colquitt County in 2011 playoffs. Next: Saturday vs. A.C. Flora, S.C. (1-0)

    6. Lowndes (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Luella (0-0)

    7. Colquitt County (0-1)

    Last week: Lost to North Gwinnett 16-14. Colquitt lost its sixth consecutive game at the Georgia Dome on North Gwinnett’s 34-yard field goal on the final play. Cole Segraves passed for 170 yards, but Colquitt was held to 115 yards rushing. The Packers dropped a pass in the end zone on a two-point conversion attempt that would’ve given them a 16-13 lead in the fourth quarter. Wayne Grandy of the Moultrie Observer notes that Colquitt has lost three straight games on the final possession of the opposing team – to Grayson in 2011, to Norcross in an Aug. 17 scrimmage and to North Gwinnett. Next: Friday at Thomas County Central (1-0)

    8. Lovejoy (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Mundy’s Mill (0-0)

    9. Alpharetta (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Milton (0-0)

    10. Valdosta (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Saturday vs. North Augusta, S.C. (1-0)

    Class AAAAA

    1. Northside-Warner Robins (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Flowery Branch (0-0)

    2. Tucker (1-0)

    Last week: Beat Cedar Grove 36-14. Dallas Rivers rushed for 115 yards and three touchdowns, and Tucker held Cedar Grove to 184 yards of total offense, including only 92 passing by preseason all-state QB Johnathan McCrary. Tucker had 411 yards of total offense. Yusuf Minor rushed for 124 yards, and Joseph Farrar ran for 97 yards. Next: Sept. 7 at North Atlanta (0-0).

    3. Kell (1-0)

    Last week: Beat Chattahoochee 19-8. Brendan Langley, who has committed to South Carolina, caught touchdown passes of 28 and 27 yards from Matthew McGuigan, one a swing pass, the other in the end zone, as Kell took a 16-0 lead at halftime. Langley also had 85 yards rushing on three carries. Kell held Chattahoochee, led by Navy-committed QB Travis Marshall, to 199 yards in total offense. Next: Sept. 7 vs. Woodstock (0-1)

    4. Stephenson (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Saturday vs. Pine Forest, Fla. (0-0) at North Gwinnett

    5. M.L. King (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Saturday vs. Stockbridge (0-0) at Tri-Cities

    6. Warner Robins (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Veterans (0-0)

    7. East Paulding (0-0) Last week: Off. Next: Friday at North Paulding (0-0)

    8. Gainesville (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Thursday vs. West Forsyth (0-0)

    9. Thomas County Central (1-0)

    Last week: Beat Thomasville 41-7. Deondre Cooksey rushed for 110 yards, and Damion Williams ran for 78 with three touchdowns. Thomasville had five turnovers. Central led 28-0 at halftime. All-state QB Adam Choice rushed for 65 yards on 11 carries. It was the most lopsided score in the 50-year-old rivalry since Central won 45-7 in 1995. Next: Friday vs. Colquitt County (0-1)

    10. Flowery Branch (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Northside, Warner Robins (0-0)

    Class AAAA

    1. Sandy Creek (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Banneker (0-0)

    2. Carrollton (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Oxford, Ala. (0-0)

    3. Marist (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Clarke Central (0-0)

    4. Cairo (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Thomasville (0-1)

    5. Statesboro (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Lakeside, Evans (0-0)

    6. Griffin (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Dutchtown (0-0)

    7. Stephens County (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Franklin County (0-0)

    8. Burke County (0-1)

    Last week: Lost to Thomson 21-14. Burke County QB Donquell Green rushed for 160 yards, but the Bears had less than 250 yards in total offense, according to the Augusta Chronicle, and failed to hold a 14-0 lead. Next: Sept. 7 vs. Hephzibah (0-0)

    9. Jonesboro (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Mount Zion, Jonesboro (0-0)

    10. Baldwin (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Jefferson County (0-1)

    Class AAA

    1. Peach County (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Perry (0-0)

    2. Buford (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Elbert County (0-0)

    3. Carver-Columbus (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Spencer (0-0)

    4. St. Pius (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Westminster (0-1)

    5. North Oconee (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Sept. 7 at St. Pius (0-0)

    6. Thomson (1-0)

    Last week: Beat Burke County 21-14. Chris Jordan rushed for 165 yards on 27 carries and scored on a 62-yard run after an option pitch with 1:11 remaining in the first half for a 21-14 lead. Burke led 14-0, but Thomson scored touchdowns on its next three drives. The second half was scoreless. Chris Tutt hit Georgia-committed TE Jordan Davis on a 15-yard TD pass for the tie, as Davis made the catch over two defenders. Torrie Battle scored on a 27-yard run and had 43 yards rushing. Thomson led in total yards 333-270. Next: Sept. 7 vs. Lakeside, Evans (0-0)

    7. Elbert County (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Buford (0-0)

    8. Washington County (1-0)

    Last week: Beat Eagle’s Landing Christian 24-19. Washington County defended a fourth-and-7 pass from its 12-yard line with 25 seconds left. Preseason all-state player William Walker (134 yards passing, 24 yards rushing) threw a 30-yard TD pass and later scored on a 25-yard run that made it 24-12 with less than nine minutes left. Next: Friday at Grovetown (0-0)

    9. Blessed Trinity (1-0)

    Last week: Beat Westminster 25-20. Freshman Milton Shelton rushed for 108 yards, and his 29-yard run in the fourth quarter gave Blessed Trinity a 25-14 lead. Blessed Trinity had lost standout RB Jordan Denson to a knee injury last week. Blessed Trinity scored four points on safeties, and Pat Jasinski stripped a Westminster player of the ball and ran 35 yards for another score on defense. Blessed Trinity has beaten Westminster two consecutive times after losing five in a row in the series. Next: Friday at Lovett (1-0)

    10. Jackson (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Mary Persons (0-0)

    Class AA

    1. Calhoun (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Ridgeland (0-0)

    2. Fitzgerald (1-0)

    Last week: Beat Jefferson County 23-6. Jason Strickland, formerly of Lamar County, got his first victory as Fitzgerald’s head coach. His team rushed for 340 yards. QB Romarius Gaulden scored on a 58-yard keeper for a 16-0 lead, and D.J. Smith put the game away with a 38-yard run for a 23-9 lead. Next: Sept. 7 vs. Irwin County (0-0)

    3. Brooks County (1-0)

    Last week: Beat Clinch County 43-3. Preseason all-state QB Malcolm Parrish was 13-of-20 passing for 170 yards and three touchdowns and rushed for 99 yards and two scores. Brooks outgained Clinch 354-34, according to the Valdosta Daily Times. It was Clinch’s worst loss since 1977. Next: Friday vs. Monroe (0-0)

    4. Cook (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Worth County (1-0)

    5. Lamar County (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Spalding (0-0)

    6. Dublin (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Dodge County (1-0)

    7. Lovett (1-0)

    Last week: Beat Woodward Academy 7-3. Grant Haley’s 3-yard TD run with 2:05 left in the first half gave Lovett a 7-3 lead that held up. The TD drive covered 24 yards after Woodward fumbled a punt. Lovett held Woodward to 203 yards in total offense. Woodward QB Terry Googer, a top FBS (formerly Division I-A) prospect, was limited to 31 yards rushing on 16 carries and 11-of-25 passing for 97 yards. Lovett’s Charlie Ingram had two sacks. Lovett leads the series between these private schools 9-8. Next: Friday vs. Blessed Trinity (1-0)

    8. Greater Atlanta Christian (1-0)

    Last week: Beat Stone Mountain 34-26. GAC led 20-2 and 34-14 before Stone Mountain rallies. Kyle Scales rushed for 126 yards on 18 carries for GAC. GAC was burned three times by Stone Mountain WR Sammy Johnson, who had three caches, all touchdowns, for 177 yards. Next: Friday vs. Savannah (0-0)

    9. Westminster (0-1)

    Last week: Lost to Blessed Trinity 25-20. Westminster was close in total yards, 209-216, but not turnovers, 3-0, and allowed two safeties and a defensive touchdown. Westminster’s Nigel Walker rushed for 49 yards and two touchdowns on nine carries. Jake Forte was 12-of-26 for 137 yards. Westminster is 5-6 in openers since 2002. Next: Friday vs. St. Pius (0-0)

    10. Vidalia (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday at West Laurens (0-0)

    Class A

    1. Lincoln County (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday at McCormick, S.C. (1-0)

    2. Wilcox County (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Wilkinson County (0-0)

    3. Eagle’s Landing Christian (0-1)

    Last week: Lost to Washington County 24-19. ELCA failed on a fourth-and-7 from the Washington County 12 in the final seconds. ELCA QB Dalton Ethridge was 14-of-21 for 175 yards and rushed for 71 yards. ELCA RB Keyante Greene, who has committed to Purdue, rushed for 65 yards and two touchdowns on 14 carries. ELCA led in first downs 23-12 and total yards 346-239, according to the Macon Telegraph. Next: Friday at Briarwood Christian, Ala. (0-0)

    4. Wilkinson County (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Wilcox County (0-0)

    5. Charlton County (0-0)

    Last week: Off. Next: Saturday at Brantley County (0-0)

    6. Aquinas (1-0)

    Last week: Beat East Laurens 33-13. Preseason all-state RB Brendan Douglas rushed for 145 yards on 32 carries and scored three touchdowns. Aquinas had 26 first downs, according to the Augusta Chronicle. Next: Sept. 7 at George Walton Academy (0-0)

    7. Calvary Day (1-0)

    Last week: Beat Landmark Christian 28-21. Calvary Day won despite trailing 21-0 at halftime. Preseason all-state Jake Clemens was 8-of-17 passing for 195 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for 80 yards. His 1-yard run in the final minutes was the game-winner. Calvary Day is ranked for the first time since 2003. Next: Friday vs. Bryan County (0-0)

    8. Emanuel County Institute (1-0)

    Last week: Beat Metter 42-7. ECI led 28-0 at halftime and played the fourth quarter with a running clock in a game played at Statesboro’s Paulson Stadium. Running backs Greg Purcell and Michael Sutton scored two touchdowns each. ECI outgained Metter 379-162. Next: Sept. 7 at Washington County (1-0)

    9. Landmark Christian (0-1)

    Last week: Lost to Calvary Day 28-21. Landmark failed to hold a 21-0 halftime lead and a 21-7 fourth-quarter lead. Jeremiah Kirkland scored Landmark’s first two touchdowns on runs. QB Josh Nobles passed 2 yards to Cole Higbie for the 21-0 lead after a Calvary Day fumble. Landmark beat Calvary Day 21-7 in the 2011 Class A second round. Next: Friday vs. Athens Christian (0-0)

    10. Savannah Christian (0-1)

    Last week: Lost to Jenkins 21-20. Paris Baker, making his first start at quarterback, rushed for 141 yards and all three touchdowns for Jenkins, which led 21-7 in the fourth quarter and held on. Savannah Christian missed an extra point that would have tied the game with 3:01 left. Savannah Christian lost starting QB Brandon Thomas to an ankle injury in the first half. Freshman quarterback Chase Marini was 5-of-10 passing for 67 yards in leading the comeback. Jenkins missed its first extra point but went for two and made it for a 21-7 lead in the third quarter. Next: Sept. 7 at Prince Avenue Christian (1-0)

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