1. Alexander is the only unbeaten team in 5-AAAAA and Allatoona is one of five one-loss teams, although it has one more victory than the other four, so the winner will be in sole possession of first place. Alexander also was undefeated last year heading into this matchup, but Allatoona's Russell Halimon rushed for 193 yards in a lopsided victory. 2. Alexander has one of the state's most balanced offenses, averaging 212.5 yards per game rushing on 110 total carries and 208.3 yards passing on 89 attempts. QB Baylor Whitfield is 48-of-85 passing for 815 yards, with 12 touchdowns and three interceptions. RB Daetrich Harrington has run for 647 yards and seven TDs on 78 carries. 3. Allatoona's Halimon, who has committed to Arizona, was a first-team all-state selection in 2014. This year, he has rushed for 818 yards and seven touchdowns on 120 carries. Halimon had his best game of the season two weeks ago in a 25-18 victory over South Paulding, rushing 35 times for 260 yards. Allatoona runs the ball about 78 percent of the time.
Calhoun at Adairsville
When, where: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Tiger Stadium, Adairsville
Records, rankings: Calhoun is 5-0 overall, 3-0 in Region 6-AAA and No. 1; Adairsville is 4-0, 2-0 and No. 9.
Last meeting: Calhoun won 42-10 in 2014.
Three things to know: 1. These are the only teams with unbeaten region records in 6-AAA. Adairsville led this rivalry 9-6 through 1998, but Calhoun has won 10 straight since the hiring of coach Hal Lamb. None of the past seven games has been closer than 28 points. 2. Adairsville has won 14 consecutive games when not playing Calhoun or Blessed Trinity, the current No. 1 and No. 2 teams in AAA. Sidnee Johnson, a 1,000-rusher in 2014, remains the focal point of Adairsville's offense. The senior has rushed for 652 yards and 10 touchdowns on 81 carries. QB Roger Redd is 24-of-46 passing for 366 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions. 3. Calhoun QB Kaelan Riley is having an offensive player-of-the-year type season. He's 51-of-75 passing for 735 yards and 10 touchdowns and has rushed for 207 yards and five touchdowns. RB Olico Dennis (416 yards rushing) and WR Baylon Spector (203 receiving) also are weapons. OL Jack DeFoore has committed to Ole Miss, TE/DL Landon Rice to Auburn. LB Jireh Wilson (nine tackles for loss) is the leading tackler. He's committed to Wofford.
Camden County at Valdosta
When, where: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Cleveland Field at Bazemore-Hyder Stadium, Valdosta
Records, rankings: Camden County is 5-0 overall, 0-0 in Region 1-AAAAAA and No. 9; Valdosta is 4-1, 0-0 and unranked.
Last meeting: Valdosta won 13-10 in 2014.
Three things to know: 1. Camden had beaten Valdosta five consecutive times until the 2014 game. That sent Camden reeling to an 0-5 finish in the region. Camden had lost only six regions games from 1994 to 2013, mostly in the weaker coastal Region 3. In 2014, Valdosta took a 13-10 lead on a 61-yard drive to open the second half. There was no more scoring in the game. 2. Camden has three of the five leading rushers in the region - Harrison Poole (334 yards), Brandon McMaster (315) and Mickey Packard (269). That's despite two games being ended at halftime by weather. QB Antonio Hamilton has completed only 14 passes, but five are for touchdowns. 3. Valdosta QB Seth Shuman is 94-of-137 passing for 1,491 yards and 17 touchdowns with no interceptions. WR Jamarcus Tyson has 18 catches for 426 yards. The leading rusher is Tim Griffin (267 yards). LB Todd Bradley has committed to Georgia Southern.
Colquitt County at Lowndes
When, where: 8 p.m. Friday, Martin Stadium, Valdosta
Records, rankings: Colquitt County is 5-0 overall, 0-0 in Region 1-AAAAAA and No. 1; Lowndes is 4-1, 0-0 and unranked.
Last meeting: Colquitt County won 45-27 in 2014.
Three things to know: 1. In the 2014 game, Lowndes led in total yards 345-298. The difference was largely turnovers. Four were quickly cashed into touchdowns, three forced by Colquitt County, one by Lowndes. 2. Lowndes QB Austin Dixon is the son of former defensive coordinator Taz Dixon, who took a job on Thomasville's staff. Austin remained, and he is having a big season - 59-of-78 passing for 704 yards and 12 touchdowns and a team-leading 272 yards rushing. Dezmon Copeland, who rushed for 147 yards against Colquitt last season, has 196 yards rushing this season. DB Tyson Harris has a team-leading 18 tackles, an interception, a forced fumble and two blocked kicks. 3. Colquitt County's Chase Parrish was 17-of-25 passing for 178 yards against Lowndes last season. This season, the senior is 59-of-82 for 866 yards and 14 touchdowns with only one interception. WR Kiel Pollard has a region-leading seven TD catches. DT Ty'Kevious Phillips has seven tackles for losses. LB Akivie Bailey is the leading tackler.
Creekside at Mays
When, where: 8 p.m. Friday, Lakewood Stadium, Atlanta
Records, rankings: Creekside is 4-1 overall, 0-0 in Region 6-AAAAA Div. B and unranked; Mays is 5-0, 0-0 and No. 4.
Last meeting: Creekside won 13-7 in 2014.
Three things to know: 1. Creekside, Mays and Carver of Atlanta finished in a three-way tie for first place in the subregion last season. Creekside earned the berth in the region championship game through tiebreakers and beat Stephenson for the title. Mays was relegated to the No. 3 seed for the state playoffs but won four consecutive games (three on the road) to reach the final. 2. Creekside is in its first season under Will Rogers, a Creekside graduate who was hired off Valdosta's staff to replace Olten Downs, who left for a position at the University of Georgia. Rogers suffered his first loss two weeks ago against Stephenson, 49-12. QB Felix Harper was 14-for-29 for 169 yards with a touchdown in that game. 3. Mays has allowed just 42 points this season, most of which came in a 36-26 victory over Hughes in the opener. The defense is led by a strong group of linebackers that includes Tobias Little (43 total tackles, eight for losses, one sack), Marquez Daniel (40-16-1) and Myles Reid (37-10-5). QB B.J. Phillips is 71-of-105 passing for 1,160 yards and 15 touchdowns.
Griffin at Spalding
When, where: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Memorial Stadium, Griffin
Records, rankings: Griffin is 2-3 overall, 0-1 in Region 4-AAAA Div. B and unranked; Spalding is 5-0, 1-0 and No. 9.
Last meeting: Griffin won 46-13 in 2014.
Three things to know: 1. Spalding is projected by the computer Maxwell Ratings as a seven-point favorite to beat its cross-town rival for the first time in program history. Griffin won the previous seven meetings by an average score of 42-5. Spalding, which opened in 2000, is 5-0 for the first time, while Griffin is off to its worst start since 2005. 2. Griffin had a 22-game winning streak against Jonesboro snapped in a 13-7 loss last week. The Bears scored on their first possession of the game, on a 2-yard run by Isaiah Spruill, but gave up the tying touchdown on an 84-yard run 25 seconds later. QB Tylan Morton was 16-for-30 passing for 124 yards for Griffin, which was outgained 266-203, according to the Griffin Daily News. 3. Spalding's Askia Moses and QB Naricuss Driver Jr. carry most of the load for an offense that gains 360.6 yards per game. Driver is 40-of-68 passing for 578 yards and three touchdowns, and he has rushed for 328 yards on 68 carries. Moses has run for 342 yards and eight touchdowns on 49 carries. The Jaguars allow just 7.2 points per game.
Jefferson at Elbert County
When, where: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Granite Bowl, Elberton
Records, rankings: Jefferson is 5-0 overall, 1-0 in Region 8-AAA and No. 3; Elbert County is 5-0, 1-0 and No. 4.
Last meeting: Jefferson won 52-6 in 2014.
Three things to know: 1. The 2014 blowout was played in the absence of Elbert County QB Mecole Hardman. Both teams went on to reach the state quarterfinals. These are the only unbeaten teams in the region, although Oconee County (4-1, 1-0) hasn't lost in region play and will play both of these teams at home late in the season. 2. Hardman has rushed for 797 yards and 13 touchdowns. He's only 21-of-51 passing for 308 yards. Tra Barnett (312 yards rushing) and La'Kel Hood (292) each have 100-yard rushing games. Barnett is the leading receiver, and he returned an interception for a touchdown last week in a 24-14 victory over Hart County. 3. Jefferson is the more efficient passing team (sophomore QB Bryce Moore is 30-of-54 passing for 460 yards), but the offense is built around sophomore RB Colby Wood, who has 961 yards rushing and 14 touchdowns. LB Zack Boobas is the leading tackler.
Model at Darlington
When, where: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Chris Hunter Stadium, Rome
Records, rankings: Model is 5-0 overall, 1-0 in Region 7-AA and No. 8; Darlington is 5-0, 1-0 and No. 6.
Last meeting: Darlington won 21-14 in 2014.
Three things to know: 1. Darlington and Model are the only 7-AA teams that are undefeated overall, and the winner will emerge as the front-runner for the region title. However, both have games remaining against Chattooga, which is 4-1 overall and 1-0 in the region. Darlington has beaten Model 11 consecutive times and leads the series 22-6. 2. Model QB Kyler Eldridge is 40-for-71 passing for 560 yards and five touchdowns and has rushed for 328 yards and seven TDs on 82 carries. He is also the team's leading tackler from his linebacker position and has three sacks. The Blue Devils get about 63 percent of their offense from a running game that is led by Chris Dublin (527 yards on 96 carries). 3. Darlington sophomore RB Tijai Whatley rushed for 325 yards and four touchdowns on 20 carries (16.3 ypc), scored on a 38-yard pass reception and finished with 370 all-purpose yards in a 56-35 victory over Gordon Lee last week, a game in which the Tigers trailed 22-21 at halftime. Whatley had a 217-yard rushing game against King's Ridge earlier this season.
Thomson at Burke County
When, where: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Bear Den, Waynesboro
Records, rankings: Thomson is 4-0 and No. 5 in Class AAAA; Burke County is 4-1 and unranked in AAAA.
Last meeting: Burke County won 21-14 in 2014.
Three things to know: 1. This is the first of two regular-season games between these front-runners in Region 3. Only the second game, Nov. 6, counts in the region standings. Burke County won both last season, 20-17 and 21-14, to take the lead 16-14 in a series that began in 1987, when Burke County opened. This is Burke's most common rival. 2. Thomson averages 345.3 yards rushing per game. Billy Mance (596) rushed for 234 yards against Washington County on Aug. 28. Sophomore RB Tyrek Braswell (371) also has two 100-yard rushing games. QB Rashad Sturgis is 16-of-33 passing for 350 yards. Thomson has 24 rushing TDs and one passing TD. Five of Thomson's 11 leading tacklers are sophomores. 3. Burke County QB Caleeb Roberson (273 yards passing, 318 rushing) has not played since suffering a shoulder injury in the third game against Griffin. Backup Keenan Parker, son of head coach Eric Parker, entered that game and ended up scoring the winning touchdown in the fourth quarter. He's 30-of-57 passing for 413 yards and has rushed for 232. DL Marcus Smith has eight tackles for losses.
Walton at Roswell
When, where: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Ray Manus Stadium, Roswell
Records, rankings: Walton is 5-0 overall, 3-0 in Region 5-AAAAAA and No. 6; Roswell is 4-0, 2-0 and No. 3.
Last meeting: Roswell won 27-15 in 2014.
Three things to know: 1. Walton and Roswell are the last unbeaten teams in 5-AAAAAA, and the winner will be the heavy favorite to win the region championship. Walton won five region titles in the past 12 seasons and seven overall. Roswell has won nine region titles, most recently in 2010. 2. Walton has the top passer, the top two receivers and the No. 3 rusher in Cobb County, based on statistics compiled by the Marietta Daily Journal. QB Addison Shoup is 72-for-108 for 1,257 yards. His top targets are WR Dominick Blaylock (21 catches, 457 yards, five touchdowns) and TE Sam Letton (22-426-5). K.K. Brooks has rushed for 584 yards on 109 carries. 3. Roswell QB Quintarius Neely has paid big dividends since transferring from Lovejoy, directing a balanced offense that averages 380.3 yards per game. The senior is 47-for-83 passing for 634 yards, has rushed for 220 yards on 21 carries and has had a hand in 11 touchdowns. Junior RB Sheldon Evans, a returning all-state player, has rushed for 415 yards and nine touchdowns on 62 carries.
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