There is a phrase among coaches and media persons that says it all, “If you are playing a football game on Thanksgiving week…you’ve had a good season.” If that statement is indeed fact, 56 teams have already enjoyed a great Georgia Prep Football season.

However, there is still some serious business to be taken care of if the ultimate prize of a state football championship trophy is in the future for seven of those teams.

Last weekend saw more upsets and surprises as the sweet sixteen teams went toe-to-toe in some gigantic battles which were more like championship games than elimination contests.

Benedictine Military, the Class AA defending champions eliminated the Lovett Lions, 41-40 in a game played in Savannah. Also in Class AA, Jefferson County edged by Wesleyan, 23-21. Marion County, one of the state’s finest Class A teams, narrowly escaped first round disaster by beating Twiggs County 22-20, while Mt. Zion-Carroll shocked perennial power Lincoln County 10-7. Stratford Academy of Macon eliminated Calvary Day School, 14-7 and Christian Heritage upended Athens Academy, 22-14.

In Class AAA, Elbert County knocked Dodge County from the ranks of the unbeaten teams in the state 23-8, while the defending AAA champions Calhoun beat Peach County, 20-14. Westminster downed top seed Callaway, 49-28 with their second straight impressive road win. 

In Class AAAA, unbeaten Bainbridge, 12-0, defeated Sandy Creek, 14-7 in overtime and the Thomson Bulldogs continued to roll with a 44-21 win over Grady.

Class AAAAA saw Houston County and Mays put on an offensive show in the mid-state, with the Bears prevailing 42-40, while second-seed Kell from Region 7-AAAAA traveled to Douglas and topped Region 3-AAAAA champion Coffee, 14-7. 

Class AAAAAA had a couple of surprises in last week’s sweet sixteen round of play as well. South Forsyth beat Tucker 42-35 and Collins Hill ousted Newton 31-24.

The Thanksgiving week schedule is a dandy for the remaining teams in all classifications and most of the games are championship caliber matchups.  In Class A Public, the top matchups are: Irwin County hosting Trion and Mt. Zion at Emanuel County Institute. In Class A Private its Mt. Paran Christian at Eagles landing Christian, a rematch of last’s years Dome title game, and Christian Heritage at Aquinas.

In Class AA, Benedictine Military hosts Fitzgerald, Jefferson County hosts Rabun County and Brooks County from 1-AA meets the top team from powerful Region 6-AA, Greater Atlanta Christian. In AAA Elbert County travels to Calhoun and Westside-Macon travels to Cedar Grove.

One of the state’s top quarterfinal games features Buford and Thomson at the Brickyard in Thomson. Bainbridge meets St. Pius X, Jonesboro plays Cartersville and Woodward Academy hosts Marist.

AAAAA matchups include: Drew at Ware County, Glynn Academy at Stockbridge, Houston County and Allatoona and Kell Travels to Northgate.

The state’s top-ranked Class 6-A team, Colquitt County travels to South Forsyth, Collins Hill is at Roswell, Grayson meets Westlake and Archer travels to Mill Creek in other Class AAAAAA games.

Happy Thanksgiving! Enjoy the games…