Grayson falls to IMG in battle of two nationally-ranked schools
By I.J. Rosenberg/Score Atlanta
Grayson, the No. 1 ranked football team in Georgia, put the ball on the ground Saturday night and was no match for IMG Academy.
The team from Bradenton (Fla.) filled with some of the top high school players in the country, came to Loganville and beat the Rams 26-7 in a game that was on ESPN2 and has been surrounded with controversy in the state since it was announced the two teams would play.
IMG quarterback Kellon Mond put on a show as after an early Grayson score he ran for two scores and threw another. On two of the touchdown drives, Mond accounted for every yard. Meanwhile, Grayson had four turnovers.
Said IMG head coach Kevin Wright of his quarterback who has committed to play his college football at Texas A&M, “I don’t think he has ever run the ball that much in his life.’’
According to their website, IMG which was ranked No. 4 nationally (USA Today) coming into the game, is a “boarding school with the purpose of providing athletes a custom-designed academic curriculum, combined with advanced athletic training.’’ The game against Grayson is likely to be the last time a team from Georgia plays a sports academy team. The Georgia High School Association only recently adjusted a bylaw that will only allow its schools to play out of state teams if they are full members of their state association. As an independent, IMG is not a full member of the Florida High School Athletic Association and can’t compete in the playoffs and pulls players from not only from different states but also other countries.
IMG has three players that were on Georgia teams last year including Isiah Pryor (Archer), Robert Beal (Norcross) and T.K. Chimedza (Dacula).
The Rams came into the game ranked No. 2 nationally (USA Today and MaxPreps), a program which has caused its own stir in the state when four top players including DeAngelo Gibbs, the state’s No. 1 football recruit, transferred into Grayson before this season.
But the Rams’ only score came early in the second quarter when receiver Jaymest Williams, who transferred in from Archer, caught a 56-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Chase Brice.
Grayson head coach Jeff Herron made no excuses, saying, “We didn’t play very well and we didn’t coach very well. It’s very frustrating. We put our defense in some tough situations. You can’t turn the ball over like that and expect to beat a team like IMG. The good news is I told the kids that a lot of the mistakes are fixable but we have a short week to get it done.’’
Indeed they do as Grayson travels Friday to play No. 3 McEachern.