Region 5 may have more preseason questions than any other region in the
Class AAAA classification. Four of the 12 schools - Cherokee, Sequoyah,
Osborne and Pebblebrook - drop down from Class AAAAA while two schools -
Hillgrove and South Paulding - are first-year programs. The A subregion
is comprised of Cherokee, East Paulding, Hillgrove, Sequoyah, South Paulding
and Woodland, while Alexander, Chapel Hill, Douglas County, Lithia Springs,
Osborne and Pebblebrook will compete in the B subregion.
Sequoyah went 5-5 and narrowly
missed the postseason after going 11-2 in 2004. The Chiefs are expected
to be the team to beat in subregion A. Cherokee had a disappointing season
after making the playoffs in 2004. The Warriors appeared to have turned
things around midway through the season last year when they upset Walton,
a playoff qualifier. However, Cherokee lost its final five games. They
hope to end that slide.
East Paulding is looking to
improve on a 3-7 campaign. Senior Chas Henry (5-11, 180) returns to lead
the offense at quarterback. The Raiders hope to see Henry running the
offense instead of being on the field as a punter. Henry is one of the
state's top punters.
Woodland isn't expected to
make much noise in the subregion race, while Hillgrove and South Paulding
will play nonregion schedules.
Even though Douglas County
lost a wealth of talent off last season's 10-2 team, including versatile
quarterback Ricky Dobbs, there is enough returners for the Tigers to challenge
for the region title and a playoff berth. The offense has some concerns
but two of the state's top linebacking prospects in seniors Ahmad Horton
(5-9, 190) and Desmond Steward (6-0, 230) return to lead the team.
Pebblebrook looks to rebound
after a disappointing 3-7 finish in Class AAAAA. Aside from Douglas County,
the Falcons' stiffest competition in the subregion should come from Chapel
Hill, which narrowly missed the playoffs last season.
Alexander, Lithia Springs and
Osborne combined to win two games in 2005. Neither of the three will contend
for the playoffs.