Football rankings: Ware No. 1 in 5A; Hebron, Heritage-Ringgold make history

Ware County is the third No. 1 football team in Class 5A this season, and Hebron Christian has its highest ranking in this week’s high school football rankings.

Ware (4-0) moved up from No. 2 after No. 1 Cartersville lost to Calhoun last week. Ware has beaten Benedictine and Bainbridge, two top-10 teams from Class 4A, but the Gators’ No. 1 ranking is more about the lack of a clear-cut favorite. In fact, Ware was thought to be rebuilding after graduating four-year starting quarterback Thomas Castellanos, now at Central Florida.

But preseason No. 1 Warner Robins, the two-time defending champion, is 2-4, and Cartersville has lost a region game for the first time since 2011. Cartersville held the No. 1 position for six weeks but lost Thursday to then-No. 8 Calhoun 50-48 in triple overtime in a Region 7 game. That spelled the end of Cartersville’s 62-game winning streak in region games. Calhoun, despite two losses, is up to No. 4 and Cartersville down to No. 5.

Hebron Christian, previously unranked, is No. 5 in Class 3A after a 35-28 victory over then-No. 5 Oconee County in a Region 8 game. Hebron had been ranked a few times before in Class A, but the Lions’ No. 5 standing this week is their best showing. Hebron is 6-0.

In a Saturday game, No. 1 Cedar Grove of Class 3A upset St. John’s of Washington 35-13 on the road to validate its ranking. St. John’s entered the game with six top-25 national rankings. Cedar Grove has lost to No. 2 Colquitt County and No. 3 Mill Creek of Class 7A.

Among the new teams to the rankings is Heritage-Ringgold. The Generals, a 4A team, are 6-0 and ranked for the first time. The school opened in 2008. Heritage has not played a top-10 opponent this season but will Friday as No. 1 Cedartown visits.

Class 7A

1. (1) Buford (6-0)

2. (2) Colquitt County (6-0)

3. (3) Mill Creek (6-0)

4. (4) Carrollton (6-0)

5. (6) Valdosta (6-0)

6. (5) Walton (4-1)

7. (7) Lambert (5-0)

8. (8) North Cobb (3-2)

9. (9) Lowndes (3-2)

10. (10) Grayson (5-1)

Class 6A

1. (1) Hughes (6-0)

2. (2) Lee County (5-1)

3. (3) Roswell (5-1)

4. (4) Woodward Academy (5-1)

5. (5) Gainesville (6-0)

6. (6) Rome (5-1)

7. (7) Thomas County Central (6-0)

8. (9) Marist (4-2)

9. (NR) Brunswick (6-0)

10. (8) Houston County (5-1)

Out: No. 10 Blessed Trinity

Class 5A

1. (2) Ware County (4-0)

2. (3) Creekside (4-2)

3. (4) Dutchtown (6-0)

4. (8) Calhoun (4-2)

5. (1) Cartersville (5-1)

6. (6) Loganville (7-0)

7. (5) Kell (5-0)

8. (7) Coffee (4-1)

9. (NR) Jones County (4-2)

10. (NR) Cambridge (4-2)

Out: No. 9 Jefferson, No. 10 Eastside

Class 4A

1. (1) Cedartown (6-0)

2. (2) North Oconee (5-0)

3. (3) Perry (5-1)

4. (4) Troup (6-0)

5. (5) Burke County (5-0)

6. (6) Benedictine (3-2)

7. (8) Whitewater (5-1)

8. (9) Bainbridge (2-4)

9. (10) Wayne County (4-1)

10. (NR) Heritage-Ringgold (6-0)

Out: No. 7 Starr’s Mill

Class 3A

1. (1) Cedar Grove (4-2)

2. (2) Carver (Atlanta) (4-1)

3. (3) Calvary Day (4-0)

4. (4) Sandy Creek (6-1)

5. (NR) Hebron Christian (6-0)

6. (8) Dougherty (5-0)

7. (9) Stephens County (5-1)

8. (6) Peach County (3-3)

9. (5) Oconee County (3-3)

10. (NR) Carver-Columbus (4-1)

Out: No. 7 Crisp County, No. 10 Mary Persons

Class 2A

1. (1) Fitzgerald (5-0)

2. (2) Pierce County (5-0)

3. (3) South Atlanta (5-0)

4. (4) Cook (5-1)

5. (5) Thomson (4-1)

6. (6) Eagle’s Landing Christian (2-3)

7. (7) Putnam County (5-1)

8. (9) Northeast (4-2)

9. (NR) Callaway (3-3)

10. (10) Rockmart (3-2)

Out: No. 8 Columbia

Class A Division I

1. (1) Prince Avenue Christian (5-0)

2. (2) Swainsboro (5-0)

3. (3) Rabun County (6-0)

4. (4) Bleckley County (6-0)

5. (5) Brooks County (4-1)

6. (6) Irwin County (4-1)

7. (7) Whitefield Academy (5-1)

8. (8) Darlington (6-0)

9. (9) Elbert County (6-0)

10. (NR) Social Circle (4-1)

Out: No. 10 St. Francis

Class A Division II

1. (1) Early County (6-0)

2. (2) Clinch County (5-1)

3. (3) Bowdon (5-1)

4. (4) Johnson County (5-0)

5. (5) Washington-Wilkes (5-1)

6. (6) Charlton County (3-2)

7. (7) Schley County (4-2)

8. (8) Dooly County (3-2)

9. (9) Aquinas (4-1)

10. (10) McIntosh County Academy (5-1)