South Region Top 25 High School Football Rankings
St. Thomas Aquinas (FL) 15-0
The Raiders were down early against Edgewater but scored 21 second-half points to win the Florida 7A State Championship 28-23. This is their 8th state championship since 2007. The Raiders big offensive line controlled the ground game and sophomore running back Anthony Hankerson rushed for 190 yards and a touchdown. QB Zion Turner rushed for 75 yards and 2 touchdowns and he also threw a big touchdown pass in the 4th quarter to Marcus Rosemy. OLB Derek Wingo led the defense with 2 sacks and Dontae Lunan had 11 tackles. The Raiders had 14 seniors that signed with Division 1 colleges. They had big wins over De La Salle (CA) in week 1 and they beat St. Louis (Hawaii) in the Geico State Championship Bowl Series on December 21.
North Shore (TX) 15-1
The Mustangs won their second straight Texas 6A Division 1 State Championship after beating Duncanville 31-17. They are 31-1 over the last two seasons. The Mustangs played the championship game without Zachary Evans, the #1 running back in the nation. Dematrius Davis ran for 122 yards and a touchdown. Roger Hagan ran for 105 yards and 2 touchdowns. North Shore’s big offensive line was led by 6’7 345-pound senior Damieon George (Alabama) and Jaeden Roberts, a 6’5 330-pound Class of 2021 prospect that already has 25+ Division 1 offers. The Mustangs only loss came in week 1 against Katy (12-1). They avenged that loss in the playoffs beating them 56-35. North Shore also knocked off Lake Travis (13-2), Humble Atascocita (12-2) Cypress Fairbanks (11-1), and Dickinson (10-2). Corey Flagg (Miami FL), John Gentry (Utah State), and Upton Stout (North Texas) all signed with Division 1 colleges.
IMG Academy (FL) 9-1
IMG is a national power that knocked off the Pennsylvania State Champion (St. Joseph’s), Florida 5A State Champion (Miami Northwestern), and the Florida 4A State Champion (Booker T Washington). They also had big wins over St. Johns (Washington DC) and Hoover (AL). Their only loss was to St. Francis Academy (Baltimore). Demonte Capehart, a 6’5 305-pound defensive tackle led the team with 44 tackles and 16 tackles for loss. He is committed to Clemson. Jordan Butler (Northwestern) and Josh Griffis (Florida State) each had 11 tackles for loss. Kaytron Allen (2022) rushed for over a 1,000 yards and had 1,204 all-purpose yards as a sophomore. Ari Allen (2021) led the team with 36 catches for 432 receiving yards and 3 touchdowns.
Duncanville (TX) 15-1
The Panthers had a disappointing end to the season losing to Galen Park North Shore for the second straight season in the 6A Division 1 State Championship game. They were without their star quarterback, Ja’Quinden Jackson (Texas) because he tore his ACL in the Semi-Final game. It was a devastating blow losing Jackson. Last year, they lost on a hail mary pass on the last drive of the game. These were two unfortunate situations but give this team a ton of credit. They are a true national power and will be loaded again next season. Roderick Daniels, a 2021 prospect, rushed for 131 yards on 8 carries in the championship game. The senior class had a great career with a combined 51-6 overall record in the last 4 seasons. Chris Thompson (Auburn), Ennis Rakestraw (Missouri), James Mitchell (Colorado State), Trysten Smith (Central Arkansas) are all seniors that signed with Division 1 colleges. The Panthers had big wins over St. Johns (Washington DC), Southlake Carroll, and Rockwall.
Alvin Shadow Creek (TX) 16-0
The Sharks finished off a perfect 16-0 season after beating undefeated Denton Ryan in the Texas 5A Division 1 State Championship game 28-22. This was Shadow Creek’s first-ever state championship in only their second year of having a football program. The Sharks lost to Highland Park in the 2018 5A Division 1 State Championship game. They are 31-1 over the last two seasons. Kyrone Drones (2021 QB) was the game’s MVP against Denton Ryan. He had 320 all-purpose yards and scored 2 rushing touchdowns. Kelvon Brown (2022) scored the Sharks last touchdown on an 8-yard run late in the 4th quarter. A huge defensive stop on a hail mary attempt on the last play of the game in the end zone secured a victory for the Sharks. Xavion Alford (Texas), Ronald Triplette (Kansas State), Jeremiah Harris (Kansas State), Alec Bryant (Virginia Tech), Seth Jones (Baylor), Gregory Brown (New Mexico), Warren Shankle (Prairie View A&M), and Courtney Brown (Columbia) are all seniors that signed with Division 1 colleges.
Marietta (GA) 14-2
Marietta knocked off undefeated Lowndes 17-9 to win the Georgia 7A State Championship. This was their first state title since 1967. Kimani Vidal scored 2 rushing touchdowns in the first half and Cooper Kipp kicked a 26-yard field goal to give the Blue Devils a 17-0 lead going into halftime and then held on for the win. Quarterback Harrison Bailey was 22-of-31 passing for 271 yards. Arik Gilbert had 11 receptions for 146 yards. The Ble Devils had big wins during the season against St. Joseph’s Prep (Pennsylvania State Champs), #21 Orlando Edgewater, Milton (GA), Parkview (GA), and Eastside Catholic (WA). Arik Gilbert (LSU), BJ Ojulari (LSU), Harrison Bailey (Tennessee), Ricky White (Michigan State), Kimani Vidal (Troy), Peter Warrick (Florida Atlantic), Taji Johnson (Boston College), Jake Wray (Colorado), and Kiersten Lee (Stanford) are all seniors that signed with Division 1 colleges. They would be ranked higher but still lost two games to Grayson and McEachern. The team has some amazing underclassmen that are getting a lot of attention and we expect the Blue Devils to be right back in the hunt in 2020.
Thompson (AL) 12-1
The Warriors won the Alabama 7A State Championship 40-17 over Phenix City Central. This was a rematch of the 2018 7A Championship game where Phenix City Central won 52-7. This was Thompson’s first State Championship since 1982 and second in school history. Sawyer Pate (Auburn) was the State Finals MVP and he was also the Class 7A Player of the Year. He threw for 3,139 yards, 41 touchdowns, and completed 75% of his passes. Michael Pettway (Washington State) and Jojo Gaiters were his go-to receivers on offense. Pettway caught 60 passes for 1,090 yards and 15 touchdowns. Evan Mcguire (Auburn), Carson Rockett (South Alabama), Javone Williams (Tennessee Tech), and Owen May (West Georgia) are all seniors that signed on Signing Day. Jeremiah Alexander, a 6’2 212-pound sophomore was All-State and led the team with 119 tackles and 25 tackles for loss. He is considered the top player in the state in the 2022 recruiting class. The Warriors beat Hoover twice and their only loss came to Hewitt-Trussville (35-29).
Archbishop Rummel (LA) 13-0
Archbishop Rummel scored on a Donovan Kaufman (Vanderbilt) 95-yard kickoff return with 2:56 left in the 4th quarter to knock off Baton Rouge Catholic in the Division 1 State Championship. The 14-10 victory was their first title since 2013. The team had big wins against Brother Martin (New Orleans), St. Augustine twice, Oak Grove (MS), and Charlotte Catholic (NC). Koy Moore (LSU) finished the season with 46 catches for 594 yards. Gavin Holmes (Wake Forest), Malik Woodery (Nicholls State), Quinton Cage (Nicholls State), and Ivory Wilright (Langston U.) are 4 more seniors that signed on signing day. Logan Diggs rushed for 924 yards and is one of the top running back prospects in the 2021 recruiting class. Kyle Wickersham (6’3 224) will be back in 2020 leading the offense at quarterback. He has 4 early Division 1 offers. Kolbe Fields (6’1 205) will be the leader on defense and committed early to Oklahoma State. The team has some key pieces that will help them defend their title in 2020.
Dutch Fork (SC) 14-0-1
The Silver Foxes won their fourth straight 5A State Championship with a 34-31 overtime win over undefeated Dorman. Tyler Olenchuk (Clemson) connected with Jalin Hyatt (Tennessee) on a 10-yard touchdown to secure the victory in overtime. Hyatt caught 7 passes for 165 yards and 3 touchdowns. He is the school’s all-time leader in receiving yards with 3,624 and 57 touchdowns. Jonathan Hall rushed for 189 yards and scored a touchdown. He finished the season with 2,039 all-purpose yards and 38 touchdowns. Olenchuk threw for 236 yards and 4 touchdowns. He had 8,611 career passing yards and 95 touchdowns while completing 66% of his passes. These 3 dominated on offense. Tyrik McDaniel (Old Dominion) and DiMarco Johnson (Akron) were 2 more seniors that signed with Division 1 schools. Hall and Ta’Chawn Brooks will play at Independence Community College. The only game they didn’t win was Mallard Creek (NC) in week 1 because the game was stopped for lightning and ruled a tie. The team will have some big shoes to fill in 2020 but there is a lot of great underclassmen that will be ready to step up.
Austin Westlake (TX) 15-1
Austin Westlake finished the season 15-1 overall and won the Texas 6A Division 2 State Championship with 24-0 victory over Denton Guyer at AT&T Stadium in front of 35,278 fans. This was their first championship since Drew Brees led them back in 1996. Kirkland Michaux, a 6’5 senior quarterback, led the Chaparrals by throwing for 285 yards and 3 touchdown passes. Jack Misch, Mason Mangum, and Jackson Coker were the 3 receivers that caught the touchdown passes. Mangum (Cal Berkeley), Bobby Duncum (SMU), Leo Lowin (Army), Austin McClendon and Sage Luther (Colgate), Ryan Lindley and Connor Halverson (Yale), Coker (Columbia), and Ty Heironimus (Hardin Simmons) are all seniors that signed with colleges. Westlake has a talented group of underclassmen that will be back next year to defend their title.
Aledo (TX) 15-1
The Bearcats won their 9th State Championship with a 45-42 victory over Fort Bend Marshall in the 5A Division 2 title game. The 9 state championships are the most by any team in Texas high school football history. Quarterback Jake Bishop started things off well for the Bearcats with 3 first-half touchdown passes and running another one in on the last play of the 2nd quarter. Jase McClellan (Alabama) did most of the damage down the stretch rushing for 218 yards on 25 carries and scoring 2 touchdowns. Monterren Parks (Utah) caught 6 passes for 132 yards and 2 touchdowns. Jojo Earle (2021) caught 4 passes for 107 yards and 1 touchdown. Bishop finished the game completing 11-of-16 passes for 244 yards and 3 touchdowns. DeMarco Roberts (2021) led the defense with 10 tackles.
Lowndes (GA) 14-1
The Vikings lost their only game of the season in the Georgia 7A State Championship game to Marietta. Lowndes had impressive wins against Miami Northwestern (Florida 5A State Champion), Colquitt County, Grayson, and North Gwinnett. Jacurri Brown, a 6’4 205-pound dual-threat quarterback in the class of 2021 threw for 1,330 yards and rushed for 1,559 yards and scored 20 touchdowns. Tiberius Drocea (Valdosta State) led the defense with 96 tackles. Jaylon Jones (East Tennessee State), Brandon Brown (West Georgia), Bryer Touchton (Mercer), Josh Brown (Troy), Hayden Wells (West Georgia), Devonn Lane (Shorter), Gary Osby (Kennesaw State), and Ghetti Brown (West Georgia) are all seniors that will play at the next level. Along with Jacurri Brown, Lowndes has a ton of underclassmen talent that will be back in 2020.
Harrison (GA) 15-0
The Hoyas won the Georgia 6A State Championship with a 20-7 victory over Alltoona. This was Harrison’s first state title in school history. Gavin Hall (Toledo) threw a 49-yard touchdown pass to James Ziglor and he also ran one in for a score. The defense blocked two field-goal attempts and had an interception returned to the 2-yard line that set up another score. David Roberts (Marshall) rushed for 1,546 yards and scored 20 touchdowns on the season. Victor Pless (Minnesota), Ryan Smith (Duke), Thomas Pollack (Mercer), Micaiah Bell (Harvard), Reiton Allen (Limestone), Cole Storey (Wingate), Cody Gast (West Georgia), Mason Bollin (Southwest Baptist), Tonny Garcia (Berry College), Caleb Williamson (Carson Newman) are all seniors that signed to play at the next level. The senior class was impressive and they already have 4 underclassmen that have received Division 1 offers. James Ziglor, Marcus Bleazard, Davion Hood, and Bryce Stanfield will all lead the way in 2020.
Maryville (TN) 15-0
The Rebels beat Ravenwood 42-21 to win the Tennessee 6A State Championship. Earlier in the season they also beat Alcoa, the 3A State Champions. The win gives Maryville their 17th state championship in school history and is one behind Alcoa (18) for the most in Tennessee. Cade Chambers (Indiana State) was the game’s MVP. He was 13-of-18 for 172 passing yards and 2 touchdowns. He also ran for 76 yards and scored 2 more touchdowns on the ground. Tee Hodge (Tennessee) carried the ball 17 times for 112 yards and scored 2 touchdowns. Ashton Maples (Tennessee Tech), Mason Shelton (Coastal Carolina), AJ Davis (UAB), Seth Orren (DePauw), and Tommy Ledford (Cumberlands) are seniors that signed letters of intent.
West Point (MS) 15-1
The Green Wave won their 4th straight Mississippi 5A State Championship with a 38-26 victory over Picayune. Picayune went into the game undefeated and averaging 52 points per game. West Point’s defense contained their rushing attack to hold on for the win. Brandon Harris was the game’s MVP with 109 passing yards and 1 touchdown. He also rushed for 51 yards and scored 2 more on the ground. Dantariyus Cannon racked up 128 rushing yards. West Point’s win gives them 11 state titles total and ties them for the most all-time in Mississippi high school football history. They are only the 3rd team in Mississippi to win 4 straight. Harris and Cannon finished the season with over 1,200 yards rushing and Jimothy Mays had 908 rushing yards. Tyron Orr led the defense with 103 tackles and 28 tackles for loss. The Green Wave had 9 seniors that signed on national signing day. Jaquarius Thomas (6’3 215 DE) and Jamarr Davis (6’4 305 OT) are the top two underclassmen returning in 2020.
Miami Northwestern (FL) 13-2
Miami Northwestern beat Jones (Orlando) 34-17 in the Florida 5A State Championship game. Freshman quarterback Taron Dickens completed 18-of-24 passes for 234 yards and 2 touchdowns in the finals. Marcus Fleming (Nebraska) caught 7 passes for 94 yards and a touchdown. Nathaniel Noel (Appalachian State) rushed for 69 yards and 3 touchdowns. Travaris Lark led the defense with 7 tackles. The Bulls only two losses all year came from #3 IMG Academy and #12 Lowndes (6A Georgia State Finalist).
Katy (TX) 12-1
Katy started the year off 12-0 with a huge upset win over North Shore in Week 1. Their rematch with North Shore in the 6A Division 1 Regional didn’t go as well as their first meeting and the Tigers fell 56-35. The Tigers had 5 defensive shutouts and averaged 44 points per game on the season. Jaylen Phillips (Sam Houston St), Bryan Massey (SMU), and Dakota White (Louisiana Tech) are all seniors that signed with Division 1 colleges. Ron Hoff was the District Offensive Player of the Year after rushing for over 1,000 yards. Jordan Patrick finished his career with over 3,000 receiving yards and 39 touchdowns. The Tigers have an extremely talented group of underclassmen including Bobby Taylor (6’2 180 DB), Malick Sylla (6’6 240 TE), Fernando Garza (6’6 230 DE), Ty Kana (6’2 205 LB), Dalton Johnson (5’11 180 FS), and Hunter Washington (6’1 170 CB). All of them have received multiple Power 5 offers. Look out for Katy in 2020!
Southlake Carroll (TX) 13-1
The Dragons ran the table all the way to the Texas 6A Division 1 Quarterfinals where they lost to undefeated Duncanville 49-35. Southlake Carroll made a strong comeback and cut the lead to 7 late in the 4th quarter. Sophomore quarterback sensation Quinn Ewers threw for 398 yards and 3 touchdowns and freshman running back Owen Allen rushed for 115 yards and 2 touchdowns. The Dragons will lose 19 senior starters off next year’s team. Riley Dodge has a 26-2 record over his first two seasons as head coach. Andrej Karic (Texas), RJ Mickens (Clemson), Addison Penn (Duke), Blake Smith (Texas A&M), Graham Faloona (Utah), Robby Rochester (UConn), Wills Meyer (Penn), Preston Fortney (Lafayette), and Dillon Springer (Holy Cross) are all seniors that signed with Division 1 colleges.
Orlando Edgewater (FL) 13-2
The Eagles lost in the Florida 7A State Championship game 28-23 but gave #1 St. Thomas Aquinas all they could handle. They had 400 yards of total offense. Christian Leary came out blazing with 2 first-quarter touchdowns runs of 54 and 75 yards respectively to put his team up 14-0. Leary, the junior sensation, finished the game with 141 rushing yards and 54 receiving yards. Tommi Hill (2021) caught 8 passes for 102 yards and a touchdown. Shari Jefferson led the defense with 9 tackles. Isaiah Connelly (Coastal Carolina), Eric Doctor (East Carolina), Davon Martin (Middle Tennessee State), and David Anderton (South Florida) are all seniors that signed with Division 1 schools. The 2021 class is loaded with even more elite-level talent. Their only other loss was in an out of state non-conference game against #6 Marietta (Georgia 6A State Champs).
Miami Central (FL) 12-3
The Rockets had an outstanding season winning the Florida 6A State Championship with a 62-27 victory over Escambia. Central as a team ran for 495 rushing yards in the finals. Amari Daniels had 188 rushing yards and 4 touchdowns. Kejon Owens had 165 rushing yards and 3 touchdowns. Henry Gray (Nebraska), Katravis Marsh (South Florida), Kejon Owens (Florida International), and Deidrick Stanley (Middle Tennessee State) all signed with Division 1 schools. Central also had a big win against Booker T Washington (Florida 4A Champs). Their only losses came to St. Francis Academy (MD), Chaminade-Madonna (FL), and #16 Miami Northwestern (Florida 5A Champs).
Covington Catholic (KY) 15-0
The Colonels won their 8th state championship and second in the last three years with their 14-7 victory over Frederick Douglass. Covington Catholic’s tough defense and a couple of big offensive plays were the difference. On fourth down and two, Caleb Jacobs (6’4 210) connected with Michael Mayer on and out and up 37-yard pass play that put the Colonels at Frederick Douglass’ 2-yard line. Three plays later, Jacobs ran it in for a touchdown to give his team a 14-0 lead. The defense held on for Covington Catholic to capture another State Championship. Mayer, a 6’5 230-pound Notre Dame commit, was the game’s MVP and was the state’s Mr.Football. Jacob finished the season passing for just over 2,800 yards and threw 33 touchdowns. Ethan Reardon, a 6’5 2021 prospect, had 799 receiving yards and scored 9 touchdowns. Lucas Jones (6’4 290) signed with Cornell.
Dorman (SC) 14-1
The Cavaliers lost an overtime heartbreaker 34-31 to Dutch Fork in the South Carolina 5A State Championship game. This was Dorman’s only loss on the season. The Cavaliers were up 28-21 going into the 4th quarter. Dutch Fork scored late to tie it up and put the game into overtime. Dorman kicked a field goal on their first possession and Dutch Fork scored a touchdown to secure the win. Hayden Lee threw 3 touchdown passes and ran one in from 13 yards out. Lee’s touchdown passes were to Nathan Storch, Kendall Norman, and Jayvon Cohen. Hayden Lee (North Glenville), Nathan Storch (Citadel), Jayhova Freeman (Limestone), Dillon Droze (Wofford), Noah Alberry (Citadel), and James McBeth (Presbyterian College) are all seniors that signed on Signing Day. The Cavaliers will be back in full force in 2020. They have an impressive group of underclassmen returning led by 1,000-yard rusher Chance Black and 6’5 235-pound sophomore defensive end, Hudson Lee. Ryan Johnson, Kendell Norman, and Tyland Linsday are also big impact players returning. Look for them to be the favorites in South Carolina in 2020.
Denton Ryan (TX) 15-1
The Raiders lost to #5 Alvin Shadow Creek in the Texas 5A Division 1 State Championship game 28-22. Denton Ryan entered the game 15-0 after knocking off an undefeated Frisco Lone Star team in the Semi-Final game. The Raiders attempted a Hail Mary pass with :02 left in the game but the pass was batted down by a Shadow Creek defender. The Raiders reached the title game for the first time since 2010 and dominated all season, averaging 50 points per game. All-American two-way star Drew Sanders signed with Alabama and Emani Bailey signed with Louisiana. Bailey rushed for 1,644 yards and 24 touchdowns in 2019. The Raiders will be loaded again in 2020 with 6 underclassmen that have already received Division 1 offers.
Booker T. Washington (FL) 13-2
The Tornadoes were down 21-10 at halftime of the Florida 4A State Championship game and made the necessary adjustments to make a big second-half surge to beat Bolles 25-21. Torey Morrison completed 27-of-42 passes for 275 yards and 2 touchdowns. He connected with Jacorey Brooks for a touchdown in the 4th quarter and then he ran for another touchdown with under 3 minutes left to put his team up. Brooks finished with 13 catches for 94 yards and 2 touchdowns. Tramel Logan led the defense with 7 tackles and 2 tackles for loss. They had a big win in Week 4 against Miami Columbus (Florida 8A State Champs) and they gave Lakewood (12-1) their only loss in the 4A Semi-Finals. Booker T. Washington’s only 2 losses came to #3 IMG Academy and #22 Miami Central (6A Florida State Champions).
Acadiana (LA) 15-0
The Wreckin’ Rams won the Louisiana 5A State championship with an 8-3 win over Destrehan. Matt McCullough picks up his first state title as the head coach and this was the school’s 5th overall (2006, 2010, 2013, 2014). Dillan Monette (Army) was the game’s Most Outstanding Player after rushing for 153 yards on 21 carries. He scored the only touchdown of the game on a 56-yard touchdown catch from Keontae Williams. The defense was stout holding Kyle Edwards (Alabama) to 47 rushing yards and Destrehan to only 140 total yards of offense. Keontae Williams and Tyreke Boyd both signed with Nicholls State and Jeremiah Brooks signed with Army. Cameron George (6’2 240), Thaos Figaro (6’2 225), Ian Montz (6’2 180), Caleb Arceneaux (5’11 206), Jerimiah Brown, and Derreck Bercier are all underclassmen that made 1st Team All-District.