John McClellan’s high school football picks: Big games for Rome, Darlington, Unity, Rockmart. Cartersville, Cedartown should cruise.

John McClellan’s high school football picks: Big games for Rome, Darlington, Unity, Rockmart. Cartersville, Cedartown should cruise.

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Friday night was as much of a story of who did not play as it was of who did. Cartersville, Cass, Calhoun, Rockmart and Unity Christian all had the night off as they moved closer to this week’s key region showdowns. Chattooga and Woodland all had to cancel or postpone games due to COVID-19 issues in moves that also affected Model.

Key region showdowns of Rome-Dalton in Region 5-6A, Cartersville-Cass in  Region 7-5A, Rockmart-North Murray in Region 6-3A, Fannin County-Pepperell in Regin 7-2A, and Cherokee Christian-Unity Christian in GAPPS Region 1-AA all highlight the most important weekend to date in Northwest Georgia. Darlington wraps up non-region play before starting league action next week in Region 7-A Private.


Model (2-2, 0-0) at Coosa (3-1, 0-0)

Series History: Coosa leads 38-19

Last Meeting: Model defeated Coosa 38-0 on November 1, 2019.

The Model Blue Devils, whose Friday night game with Chattooga was canceled after the Indians team was quarantined due to COVID-19, have not played since a September 25 one-sided 49-7 loss to Haralson County. The Coosa Eagles defeated Lakeview Academy 23-15 in a non-region game to increase their record to 3-2. Model wins by 11.


Bremen (3-2) at Private A No. 10 Darlington (4-1)

Series History: Darlington leads 7-3

Last Meeting: Darlington defeated Bremen 41-7 on August 28, 2015

The Bremen Blue Devils, who were off Friday night, defeated Maynard Jackson 31-22 in their last outing to increase their record to 3-2. The Darlington Tigers won their fourth game in five outings in a 27-0 shutout of Kings Ridge Christian. Bremen wins by 8.


Rome (2-3, 1-1) at Dalton (1-3, 0-2)

Series History: Dalton leads 11-5

Last Meeting: Dalton defeated Rome 28-9 on October 9, 2015.

The Rome Wolves were unable to overcome penalties and turnovers in a 34-12 loss to Carrollton. The Dalton Catamounts kept things close all night before going down to a 20-16 defeat by South Paulding. This is the first time in the storied history of these two traditionally strong northwest Georgia rivals in which both teams come into the game with losing records. Rome wins by 6.


Fannin County (4-0, 1-0) at Pepperell (2-3, 1-0)

Series History: Pepperell leads 2-0

Last Meeting: Pepperell defeated Fannin County 41-7 on September 1, 1989.

The Fannin County Rebels maintained the only unbeaten record so far in Region 7-2A with a dominating 57-6 win over Gordon Central. The Pepperell Dragons rebounded from their loss a week ago to Temple by defeating Dade County 41-14. The winner of this game likely will be the Region 7-2A champion. Fannin County wins by 2.


Armuchee (2-2, 0-0) at Mt. Zion (5-0, 0-0)

Series History: Armuchee leads 11-8

Last Meeting: Mt. Zion defeated Armuchee 28-14 in overtime on November 22, 1996 in the first round of the Class A playoffs.

The Armuchee Indians evened their season mark at 2-2 and surpassed their 2019 win total by defeating The King’s Academy 14-13. The Mt. Zion Eagles continued their turnaround from a year ago with a 28-10 win over Heritage of Newnan to remain unbeaten in 2020. Mt. Zion wins by 20.


Cherokee Christian School (6-0, 1-0) at Unity Christian School (6-0, 1-0)

Series History: Tied 1-1

Last Meeting: UCS defeated CCS 54-48 on October 27, 2017.

The Cherokee Christian Warriors ran their record to 6-0 with a 41-0 shutout of Fideles Christian.  The UCS Lions also are unbeaten in 2020 after another one-sided win, this one a 66-8 win over Covington Academy. The winner will have the inside track for the top seed from Region 1-AA in the Georgia Association of Private & Parochial Schools. Unity Christian wins by 7.


5A No. 4 Cartersville (4-1, 0-0) at Cass (5-0, 0-0)

Series History: Cartersville leads 41-5

Last Meeting: Cartersville defeated Cass 41-0 on August 28, 2015.

The Cartersville Purple Hurricanes are coming off their bye week after their state leading unbeaten regular season winning streak ended with a 14-12 loss to the undefeated Class 7A Cherokee Warriors. The Cass Colonels kept their perfect season alive two weeks ago following a 42-14 win over Ridgeland before being off Friday night. Cartersville wins by more than 30.


5A No. 5 Calhoun (4-1, 0-0) at Hiram (0-5, 0-0)

Series History: First Meeting

The Calhoun Yellow Jackets, whose only loss came to Tennessee power McCallie, were off Friday night after defeating Woodstock 35-14. The Hiram Hornets, who also had an open date on Friday, fell to 0-5 two weeks ago following a 34-7 loss to Flowery Branch. Calhoun wins by 19.


Adairsville (3-1, 2-0) at Ringgold (3-2, 2-1)

Series History: Adairsville leads 6-4

Last Meeting: Adairsville defeated Ringgold 18-3 on November 1, 2019.

The Adairsville Tigers are one of three teams unbeaten in Region 6-3A play following a 43-14 win over LaFayette. The Ringgold Tigers remained in strong position for a playoff berth after defeating Murray County 34-13. Adairsville wins by 11.


3A No. 7 Rockmart (3-1, 2-0) at North Murray (2-1, 2-0)

Series History: Rockmart leads 4-0

Last Meeting: Rockmart defeated North Murray 50-28 on August 28, 2015.

The Rockmart Yellow Jackets, who did not play Friday night, established themselves as the clear frontrunner a week ago in Region 6-3A in a dominating 68-7 win over Sonoraville. The North Murray Mountaineers set up this week’s showdown with the Yellow Jackets by defeating Sonoraville 40-20. The winner of this game is the clear favorite for the Region 6-3A championship.Rockmart wins by 18.


Pickens (2-3, 0-0) at Cedartown (2-2, 0-0)

Series History: Cedartown leads 5-1

Last Meeting: Cedartown defeated Pickens 42-34 on October 11, 2013.

The Pickens Dragons did not play Friday night following a 28-14 loss a week ago to Union County. The Cedartown Bulldogs, who also were off Friday night, showed they are a force to be reckoned with a week ago by overpowering Heard County 48-14. Cedartown wins by more than 30. 


Sonoraville (2-2, 0-2) at Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe (0-4, 0-2)

Series History: Sonoraville leads 6-4

Last Meeting: L-FO defeated Sonoraville 27-26 on October 25, 2019.

The Sonoraville Phoenix fell to 0-2 in Region 6-3A play after losing to North Murray 40-20. The L-FO Warriors, who are coming off an open date, remained winless two weeks ago following a 20-16 loss to Ringgold.Sonoraville wins by 15.


Off this week: Chattooga (1-3 after their game against Model was postponed due to COVID-19), Gordon Central (1-3 after losing to Gordon Lee 37-7), and Woodland (3-0 after their game against Blessed Trinity was canceled due to COVID-19)

In other games involving schools in regions in Northwest Georgia:

  • Newnan (5-0) over North Paulding (1-3) by 5
  • Alexander (3-3, 1-1) over East Paulding (3-1, 0-1) by 13
  • Carrollton (2-1, 2-0) over South Paulding (3-2, 1-1) by 14
  • Douglas County (5-0, 2-0) over Paulding County (2-2, 0-1) by 24
  • Chapel Hill (3-2, 1-0) over Villa Rica (2-3, 1-0) by 8
  • Central of Carrollton (3-1, 0-0) over Northwest Whitfield (4-0, 0-0) by 6
  • Heritage (3-2, 0-0) over Ridgeland (0-5, 0-0) by 9
  • Trion (1-3) over Southeast Whitfield (1-5) by 10
  • Coahulla Creek (1-2, 0-1) over Murray County (1-4, 0-3) by 10
  • Haralson County (5-0) over Elbert County (1-4) by 16
  • BEST Academy (1-2) over Lakeside (0-2) by 18
  • Gordon Lee (5-0, 0-0) over Bowdon (2-3, 1-0) by 5
  • Mt. Paran Christian (0-5) over King’s Ridge Christian (2-1)by 20
  • St. Francis (1-4) over Walker (0-5) by 13
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