With nearly half of AA's ranked teams on bye, it was supposed to be a mostly uneventful week. After all, f the six ranked teams that did play, only one faced an opponent with winning record. However, there was a ranked team that lost and that was the No. 7 Dublin Fighting Irish, who fell 28-21 to the Dodge County Indians in Region 3 action.
Maxwell Projections called for a seven-point margin, it just had the wrong team on the winning end. The Indians won on the road to improve to 3-4, while Dublin fell to 5-1. Both teams are now 2-1 in league play, so despite Dodge County's rough start they're in the mix for a top seed in the state tournament.
All other games involving ranked teams went as expected.
No. 2 Fitzgerald was quick to get back on the winning track, beating Albany 48-7. The Purple Hurricane improved to 5-1. Weather moved the No. 3 Jefferson County Warriors' game against Harlem to Thursday, and they won 49-10. The Warriors are now 7-0. No. 4 Callaway beat Lamar County 38-7 and are 6-0 on the year. No. 5 Rabun County ran up the score and pitched a 57-0 shutout over Putnam County to move to 5-0.
We'll pause with the No. 6 Brooks County Trojans. Injuries to key players have hurt their chances at a deep playoff run, but things might be even worse than initially thought since they barely beat winless Early County at home, 18-14. In fact, it was a comeback win! They're 5-1, but in two weeks they play Fitzgerald.
And that was Week 8 in a nutshell. Dublin lost in what can't really be classified as an upset given that Dodge County is a solid team despite its record, and the Trojans barely avoided what could have been considered a catastrophic upset.
We'll know by Monday if the Fighting Irish stays ranked, and if not, who they'll be replaced by. It could be Pepperell. It could be Elbert County. It could be Toombs County. Or another team. But probably not Dodge County.
On bye: No. 1 Benedictine; No. 8 Vidalia; No. 9 Screven County; No. 10 Heard County.
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