Archer defeated Newton 20-19 last week in a game that many didn’t notice since it was not played under the bright lights of Friday night. The game was played Saturday afternoon.
It had to make some ask: Are No. 1 Grayson and No. 2 Lowndes helmets and shoulder pads ahead of the rest of Class AAAAAAA? Are they headed toward a Dec. 9 championship game in Mercedes-Benz Stadium?
Think on these things:
-Archer is ranked No. 3 on the strength of a 6-0 record and wins over four teams that have been in the Top 10 at some point (Brookwood, North Gwinnett, Norcross, Roswell).
-Archer beat Newton 20-19.
-Lowndes beat Newton 57-0.
-Against Archer, Newton twice went for two (and failed) rather than extra points. Newton was stopped on both of those conversion attempts and lost the game by one point.
-Newton led 19-13 at halftime. Newton’s starting quarterback was injured in the first half. He didn’t play the second half.
-Archer beat Brookwood 25-17.
-Brookwood beat Colquitt County 42-25.
-The only undefeated teams other than Grayson and Lowndes in the highest classification are Archer, Walton, South Forsyth and Tift County. Their combined record last season was 21-22. None won a playoff game.
-Lowndes and Grayson, if they win their regions, will be in opposite sides of the bracket.
Something to think about.
Loren Maxwell's ratings are a little more cautious, playing the chances of a Grayson-Lowndes final at 20.9 percent, but a 43.7 percent chance they will play in some round of the playoff if not the championship (i.e., one finishes second in their region and they meet in the semifinals or something like that).
Newton is a pretty good team. In fact, Newton had sneaked into the top 15 of the Maxwell Ratings for Class AAAAAAA teams even before the Archer game. So it’s really what Lowndes did to Newton that is impressive rather than any apologies that Archer owes to anyone for winning a tough game.
Archer plays Grayson this week. That might shed more light. And there are some in Moultrie that will point out that Lowndes hasn’t beaten Colquitt County since 2012. Those two will play again on Oct. 27.