Grayson Rams – Head Coach: Geoffrey Pierce Last Season: (22-7) Final Four
Outlook: Grayson has become a perennial basketball powerhouse with trips to the final four the last 2 years. The Rams look to continue this trend and its starts with junior guard Deivon Smith, along with Reco Hallmon, Josh Smith, and Ian Schieffelin. The Rams combine good guard play with some nice inside presence to give them one of the deepest and most complete teams in the state. Expect newcomer Xavier Ayres to bring length and athleticism and Taje Kelly another big body down low. The Rams are expected to make another deep run in 7A this year.
Dutchtown Bulldogs Head Coach – Jamal Basit Last Season: (16-15) Elite 8
Outlook: After a surprise run to the Elite 8, the Bulldogs look to capitalize on their success and continue led by Coach Jamal Basit. While losing Donatvious King hurts the Dawgs look for Junior Cam Bryant to pick up the slack. Bryant averaged 12ppg and 7rpg last season and loves to score in transition and is one of the most athletic kids in Metro Atlanta. 5’8 guard Kam Hobbs runs the team and knows how to score when asked to. Junior guards Isaiah Placide and Chris Pearson provide the Bulldogs with more solid play at the guard spots. Look for the Bulldogs to continue their winning ways this season as another state tournament appearance will be their goal.
Newton Rams- Head Coach – Rick Rasmussen Last Season (27-4) Final Four
Outlook: The Rams continue to be one of the best teams in 7A basketball and the state of Georgia. They are led by Coach Rick “Ras” Rasmussen, as they start the march to another final 4 appearance it won’t be easy. Losing Mr. Georgia Basketball Ashton Hagans and Brute force DeAndre Butler the Rams will need to retool. Returning 6’6 Senior Armani Harris (10 ppg 5 Rebs) will be a good start. Harris had a tremendous summer with the Atlanta Celtics and the do it all forward gives you a high motor with a nice inside-outside game. Harris is joined by Jimmy “Tre” Clark (9.5 ppg 3 Ass 3 Rebs), who came on the scene last year and provided athleticism and the ability to score all over the floor. Tyrease Brown (15 ppg) showed his ability to stretch the floor with his long range shooting ability. Brown had 45 last year with a barrage of 3 pointers vs ELCA in a scrimmage last year. While Coach Ras has to break in two new starters, expect Shawn Smith, Doug Moore, and UTC football commit Mike Mathison to contribute, and expect them to be a force for supremacy in 7A Basketball.
Jonesboro Cardinals- Head Coach: Daniel Maehlman Last Season (23-9) Final Four
Outlook: If there is one programs that has carried the Southside on the back, look no further than the Jonesboro Cardinals and Dan Maehlman. Last year wasn’t any different, the Cardinals finished 23-9 and a Final Four appearance. This season they will look to do this without Jamari Smith, who was the heart and soul of this group. 6’6 Brice Martin will look to step in fill the huge shoes left by Smith. He comes in from Mt.Zion Jonesboro, after averaging 12.3 ppg and 5 Rebs, along with senior guard Brandon Walker, and Dakota Leffew the Cardinals will be looking to make another run in the tough 5A class.