Rating regions: R1 still pretty good despite 1-3 debut

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

The regions look a little different in the new Class 7A. Which are the strongest? Here is how I might rank them with help from the Maxwell Ratings.

The first rating number is the average strength of each team. The second rating number is more complicated, but essentially rates the region on its top-heaviness.

The overall strength is one thing, but when it comes playoff time, people don’t care how good the sixth-place team was.

1 – 93.70/75.68

Region 1 went 1-3 last week, and there can be little question the region isn’t as strong as it was. Colquitt, still a contender, is rebuilding. Lowndes was a big disappointment in the loss to Valdosta. Camden County lost to a good Florida team, but one Camden was expected to beat. Tift won big, but is untested. Still, all four teams are good in what is a smaller, slightly diluted 7A. I’d take this group over any other region’s top four.

#2 Colquitt County

#9 Camden County

#10 Lowndes

#18 Tift County

8 – 88.08/69.02

This is the surprise region from the opening week. South Gwinnett beat Central Gwinnett easily, and Shiloh beat Collins Hill. Both were considered upsets. It was thought this region would suffer as Central, Brookwood and Parkview moved over to Region 7, and Archer is expected to be down. At the moment, Maxwell rates five of Region 8’s teams in the top 22 in the class.

#4 Grayson

#6 Archer

#14 South Gwinnett

#17 Newton

#22 Shiloh

#40 Rockdale County

4 – 82.98/63.33

Roswell appears to be far and away the best team. Maxwell thinks so, rating the Hornets 20 points better than the next-best-sting. (Sting. Hornets. Get it?) Etowah looked great blowing out Campbell, but it was Campbell. Walton did not look good vs. Norcross.

#3 Roswell

#12 Etowah

#20 Walton

#32 Lassiter

#34 Cherokee

#35 Woodstock

6 – 83.82/58.51

Aside from Mill Creek, which Maxwell now rates No. 1 after its victory over Colquitt County, the region is not looking as healthy as one might think. North Gwinnett (to Brookwood) and Collins Hill (to Shiloh) each lost to teams they probably figured they had a good shot at beating. Peachtree Ridge is a question mark after losing some key personnel from its 2015 team. Lots of pedigree here, but only Mill Creek is playing at the height of its historical powers.

#1 Mill Creek

#8 Peachtree Ridge

#24 North Gwinnett

#25 Collins Hill

#36 Mountain View

#43 Duluth

#46 Discovery

7 – 76.19/52.62

#7 Norcross

#13 Brookwood

#19 Parkview

#26 Central Gwinnett

#44 Lakeside

#45 Berkmar

#48 Meadowcreek

This is a region with a clear-cut top four. One coach went as far as to tell me off the record ‘’if we don’t make the playoffs, the whole staff should be fired.’’ Norcross, Brookwood and Parkview all figure to be improved this season. Central also has won a round in the playoffs the past two seasons and was expected to be better, but the loss to South Gwinnett was concerning. Still think the Knights might come around.

3 – 82.67/62.47

This region is hard to predict beyond McEachern, which expects to make a run. North Cobb beat Cherokee; Hillgrove beat South Forsyth; North Paulding beat Paulding County. Marietta lost to Wheeler. Kennesaw Mountain lost to Hiram. Could prove to be the most underrated region in the end, though. Maxwell already thinks I’m underrating it quite a bit.

#5 McEachern

#11 Hillgrove

#15 North Cobb

#29 North Paulding

#37 Marietta

#41 Kennesaw Mountain

2 – 71.86/54.42

Westlake is ranked No. 7 by GHSF Daily after a run to the quarterfinals, but the Maxwell computer assessment is that more evidence is needed for the Lions or anyone in this region to be taken seriously as a factor come playoff time. Westlake opens at Hughes this week, so that would be one measure. Nice win by Wheeler over Marietta last week.

#16 Westlake

#21 East Coweta

#28 Wheeler

#33 Newnan

#39 Pebblebrook

#47 Campbell

5 – 70.20/54.36

For a region that went 3-1, Maxwell is rather dismissive of the teams living here. Winning were Milton (over Alpharetta), North Forsyth (over Sequoyah) and West Forsyth (over Woodstock). South Forsyth, ranked No. 8 in preseason by GHSF Daily, lost to Hillgrove 27-14 and was the victims of big plays.

#23 Milton

#27 West Forsyth

#30 South Forsyth

#31 Lambert

#38 North Forsyth

#42 Forsyth Central

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