ELCA’s Gess answers “The Question,” A newcomer rises to top of public power ratings

Article and photos courtesy of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution –> Original Article Here

Today Eagle’s Landing Christian Academy head coach Jonathan Gess answers “The Question” and we take a look at this week’s new Georgia High School Association/MaxPreps Power Ratings. First Presbyterian Day stayed undefeated and remains at the top of the private list, but a new face has jumped into the top spot on the public side.

ELCA’s Gess answers “The Question”

When we asked former Prince Avenue Christian head coach Jeff Herron why he took the job at Grayson this season, he said this: “They contacted me and to be honest I had been pretty frustrated working with fewer kids than I ever had before. I really struggled with the smaller numbers and it was a constant battle. Grayson called and it was a good fit because I didn’t have to move my family.”

You can read more of our conversation with coach Herron here: http://highschoolsports.blog.ajc.com/2016/09/06/fellowship-christian-telfair-county-top-first-power-ratings-tuesday-convo-with-jeff-herron/

But today, ELCA head coach Jonathan Gess tells us why he is still at ELCA, a program he has built into the gold standard in Class A and one of the most successful in Georgia. The Chargers, ranked No. 1 in Class A private, are 4-0 so far this season, the 10th in McDonough for Gess. Coming into this season, he has a record of 90-26 at ELCA with two state titles.

“I’ve been contacted [by other schools]. Sure. But I know I’m in a very unique situation here at ELCA that I love. I want to help build successful men who love the Lord, and who will become successful in whatever they choose to do. Winning football games isn’t the goal. That comes with building character and doing what’s right. I have a great principal, a great athletics director and great parents, who all support our program and what we’re doing. It’s a great situation.”

On the expectations that have come with the program’s great success:

“Yeah, the expectations are crazy. I mean, we beat Jonesboro, 8-2 (Aug. 26), and our parents were like, what’s going on? What’s wrong? Here’s a Class AAAAAA team that won its region last year and went to the state quarterfinals. We’ve got a first-year starting quarterback, but people don’t think we beat them bad enough. It’s crazy man, but that’s the kind of expectations that come with being successful, so you just have to deal with it.”

FPD and McIntosh County Academy top this week’s power ratings

First Presbyterian Day (4-0) is still on top of the private side of the power ratings. But this week McIntosh County Academy (3-1) hopped three spots from No. 4 to No. 1. The Buccaneers from Darian – located along I-95 between Brunswick and Savannah on the coast – have wins over Class AAA Brantley County (48-6), Class AA Bryan County (14-0) and Jenkins County (38-0). Their lone loss of the season was to Clinch (32-7).

Class A Private

Rank School Region Record Ranking
1 First Presbyterian 7-A 4-0 15.83
2 Darlington 6-A 3-1 15.50
3 Eagle’s Landing Christian 5-A 4-0 14.63
4 Landmark Christian 5-A 4-0 14.50
5 Fellowship Christian 6-A 4-0 13.96
5 Prince Avenue Christian 8-A 4-0 13.96
7 Wesleyan 5-A 4-0 13.75
8 George Walton Academy 8-A 3-0 13.67
9 Savannah Christian 3-A 3-1 13.54
10 Hebron Christian Academy 8-A 2-1 13.44
11 Stratford Academy 7-A 2-1 13.33
12 Pinecrest Academy 6-A 2-1 13.00
13 Mt. Paran Christian 6-A 3-1 12.96
14 Savannah Country Day 3-A 3-1 12.29
15 Calvary Day School 3-A 4-0 12.25
16 Tattnall Square Academy 7-A 3-0 12.00
17 Mt. Pisgah Christian 6-A 3-0 11.67
18 Aquinas 7-A 2-2 11.50
19 Athens Academy 8-A 3-0 11.11
20 Mt. Vernon 5-A 4-0 10.63
21 Strong Rock Christian 5-A 2-2 10.46
22 Athens Christian 8-A 1-2 10.33
22 Brookstone 4-A 1-2 10.33
24 Mount de Sales Academy 7-A 2-2 9.88

Class A Public

Rank School Region Record Ranking
1 McIntosh County Academy 3-A 3-1 14.50
2 Twiggs County 7-A 3-1 14.25
3 Lincoln County 7-A 2-0 13.83
3 Warren County 7-A 3-1 13.83
5 Clinch County 2-A 3-1 13.50
6 Commerce 8-A 3-0 13.39
7 Manchester 4-A 4-0 13.25
8 Gordon Lee 6-A 3-1 13.00
9 Terrell County 1-A 2-2 12.60
10 Bowdon 6-A 3-1 12.50
11 Hawkinsville 4-A 3-1 12.33
12 Jenkins County 3-A 3-1 12.29
13 Mt. Zion, Carroll 6-A 4-0 12.00
14 Mitchell County 1-A 4-0 11.92
15 Emanuel County Institute 3-A 4-0 11.83
15 Macon County 4-A 2-1 11.83
17 Miller County 1-A 2-1 11.67
18 Greene County 7-A 3-1 11.63
19 Randolph-Clay 1-A 3-0 11.33
20 Taylor County 4-A 4-0 11.25
20 Trion 6-A 2-2 11.25
22 Johnson County 3-A 4-1 11.10
23 Telfair County 2-A 1-2 10.83
24 Towns County 8-A 2-2 10.63

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