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2020 football brings all new faces to Region 4-AAA

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By R. Alan Richardson

sports editor

Did you know that not one single team competing in 4-AAA for the 2020 football season participated in that region a year ago?  That is correct.  Teams from Morgan County, Burke County, Thomson, Harlem, Cross Creek, Hephzibah, and the Academy of Richmond County (ARC) that will comprise that region in the fall of 2020 all participated in different regions in AA, AAA, and AAAA in 2019.  Just for fun let’s take a look at how those teams did this past football season and prognosticate how the MCHS Bulldogs might do in the new region they will be playing in.  

Morgan County Bulldogs:

Region:  8-AAA

Record (overall and region):  7-4, 4-2

Region rank:  Third behind #1 Jefferson (6-0) and #2 Hart County (4-2)

Playoff outcome:  Lost first round to Calhoun 38-10 

Harlem Bulldogs:

Region:  4-AA

Record (overall and region):  7-4, 7-1

Region rank:  Second behind #1 Jefferson County (8-0) 

Playoff outcome:  Lost first round to Swainsboro 38-3

Thomson Bulldogs:

Region:  3-AAAA

Record (overall and region):  6-6, 3-1

Region rank:  Second behind Burke County (3-1)

Playoff outcome:  Lost second round to Cartersville 35-0

Burke County Bears:

Region:  3-AAAA

Record (overall and region):  8-3, 3-1

Region rank:  First

Playoff outcome:  Lost first round (upset) to Americus-Sumter 13-6

Academy Richmond County (ARC) Musketeers:

Region:  3-AAAA

Record (overall and region):  4-6, 1-3

Region rank:  Fourth behind Burke County (3-1), Thomson (3-1), and Baldwin County (3-1)

Playoff outcome:  Lost first round to Carver-Columbus 52-7

Cross Creek Razorbacks:

Region:  3-AAAA

Record (overall and region):  2-8, 0-4

Region rank: Fifth out of five teams

Playoff outcome:  Did not qualify for state playoffs

Hephzibah Rebels:

Region:  4-AA

Record (overall and region):  7-3, 6-2

Region rank:  Third behind Jefferson County (8-0) and Harlem (7-1)

Playoff outcome:  Lost first round to Toombs County 37-34

The brand new Region 4-AAA will be comprised of two teams that are moving up from Class AA in Hephzibah and Harlem.  The other four teams will all be moving down from Class AAAA to face the Bulldogs.  Morgan County is the only team of the seven that has not moved up or down in classification, but rather moved laterally to another AAA region.  Only one of these teams (Thomson) made it past the first round of their respective state football brackets.  On the other hand, both Jefferson and Hart County were ousted in the quarterfinals of the AAA tournament.  Will the Dogs have a better chance of competing for a championship banner, or will this be a tougher schedule all-around?

There are certainly going to be some big football school names when you mention the history of Thomson and most recently Burke County.  The others are not well-known as powers on the gridiron, but Harlem has certainly been a thorn in the MOCO side over the history of the two programs.  You make the call.  How do you think the Bulldogs will fare in 2020?  Email your thoughts to rarichardson75@gmail.com.

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