The onset of the football season brings great joy. And it brings questions galore, on any level.
How will the first year of the absurd seventh classification go?
Eh, it’ll go, but the GHSA — which means principals, athletics directors, meddlers, power brokers and politicians — soon will have to take a look at conferences and a full-blown rating system like many states employ.
The population logistics — along with certain demographic and economic conditions — are making for major issues. I’d just as soon do like Pennsylvania and go with one big old metro Atlanta league separate from the GHSA and everybody else in the GHSA.
Georgia better look at the absolute mess going on in Louisiana regarding public and private schools, lawsuits and the potential dissolving of the Louisiana High School Athletic Association.
And, if the GHSA — which means principals, athletics directors, meddlers, power brokers and politicians — ever gets closer to the right reclassification system, yes, some private and quasi-private schools might have to suck it up a little.
Doesn’t this first week feel like November?
Other than the weather, yes it does.
Take Thursday night alone at Mercer. The four teams combined for a 37-9 record last year. Three made the postseason. One is really happy with that reclassification (Lee County was the smallest Class 6A school for 2014-16).
Jones County could engage in the first of its 60-plus points games of the season, thanks to the expectation of shootouts with a rebuilding defense.
Mary Persons needs a tremendous start against Houston County, because the Bulldogs won’t be looking for shootouts with a new quarterback. The Bulldogs are hoping to avoid what Houston County did last year to the likes of Lakeside-Evans (39-0), Greenbrier (50-6) or Veterans (41-13), but the odds are that the Bears will end up doing something similar.
Nevertheless, consider shelling out the $13 ticket to check out a doubleheader that will feature some major Division I prospects and a number of players hoping to show that they’re major Division I prospects. And figure out which non-headliner we’ll be talking about Friday.
Speaking of Friday and late-season games, there’s Northside and Warner Robins. Warning: do not bring up, even jokingly, Mike Chastain’s alma mater, that place on Green Street, to Chastain. The man is fairly obsessed with his new job — head coach at Warner Robins — and apparently intends to spend substantially more time there than he spent as a high school student at that place on Green Street.
What’s likely to happen Friday night won’t be all that comforting for the new Demons boss, and the faithful likely will grumble. Of course, faithful always grumble, everywhere. But the faithful will be happy to see more than a dozen passes ... in the first half.
What’s the daily average blood pressure of Washington County head coach Joel Ingram after a 5-6 season?
I’ll bet you it rings the bell and wins a stuffed animal.
The Golden Hawks were last below .500 in 2007, Ingram’s second year. Washington County went 8-3 a year later. Dropping down to Class 2A will make for more typical success, but Region 3-2A sure looks like a nifty region, and that won’t help anyone’s blood pressure.
Will Macon County bring in extra bleachers Sept. 9 when the No. 3 team in Class 1A hosts the No. 1 team in Class 2A, Fitzgerald?
It might be one of the top 10 games in the state of the season in all classifications, and it will be worth considering the easy drive to Montezuma.
Fitzgerald won 57-32 last year, so if any official assigned has more than 10 percent body fat, he might be in trouble.
Are the preseason polls accurate?
The Georgia Sports Writers Association poll is just out, and Dodge County at No. 4 in Class 2A might be a little generous now, but not in a few weeks. The Indians don’t pass, but breaking in a new quarterback is breaking in a new quarterback, regardless of the offense.
Many other questions await answers — or guessing.
Kickoff temperature Thursday for the opener, Mary Persons and Houston County will be around 90 with a decent shot of precipitation.
But the season is here, and in a marvelously big way. There’ll be no raining on this parade.