Class AAA - Region 8

2004 Georgia High School Football Preview

2004 Football Preview
Class AAA - Region 8

This region was tough last season. But with Oconee County dropping from Class AAAAA and Winder Barrow dropping from Class AAAA, this region will get a lot tougher.

Oconee County hasn't made the state playoffs since the 2001 season when the Warriors lost to Troup in the Class AAAA quarterfinals. But with North Oconee created to alleviate overcrowding problems, Oconee County dropped two classifications and should contend for the region crown. Junior Russ "Rat" Callaway, son of University of Georgia assistant Neil Callaway, will direct the Warriors' offense at quarterback.

Winder Barrow finished second in 8-AAAA last season, losing in the first round of the state playoffs. But the Bulldogs return plenty of size and speed to contend for a postseason trip.

Stephens County is the defending 8-AAA champion. The Indians lost several players off last year's team, including All-State defensive back Kerry Major. But there is some good news. A talented group of underclassmen is expected to contribute.

Hart County lost to eventual state champion LaGrange in the second round of the state playoffs last year. The Bulldogs lost a pair of All-State performers in linebacker Jae Thaxton and wide receiver Kendrick Harper, but should be in the playoff hunt.

Elbert County is never short on talented athletes, and the Blue Devils should have plenty to go around this year. They should also figure in the playoff chase.

Monroe Area and Franklin County struggled last season in 8-AAA. Both are expected to improve, but won't figure in the postseason race. Apalachee, which struggled in Class AA, is moving up.

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