2Byrnes (4A): A new quarterback (Micah Young), new head coach (Brian Lane) and
new defensive coordinator (Phil Magdic) will
have plenty of pressure to continue the suc-
cess. They will get the job done.
3Dutch Fork (4A): The reigning 4A Division I state champion has a beast returning in run-
ning back Matt Colburn. As long as he’s healthy,
Tom Knotts’ Silver Foxes will be one of the top
teams in the state and could repeat as champs.
4South Florence (4A): The Bruins won a school-record 12 games last season, had their
first unbeaten regular season and won their first
region title. They return quarterback Nick Jones,
the Florence Morning News’ Player of the Year, who
can help South Florence repeat those successes.
5Spring Valley (4A): New coach Jerry Brown isn’t really new. He was an assistant coach
for three state titles during the 1970s and was
the head coach when Spring Valley won the title in
1988. The Vikings have a loaded defense.
6Greenwood (4A): Wide receiver Markeyvi- ous Adams is considered one of the top
recruits in the state and will need to get the ball a
lot. New coach Dan Pippin, who led North Augusta
to seven playoff appearances in eight seasons,
will continue the winning tradition for the Eagles.
7Goose Creek (4A): The Gators return Tyrik Johnson, who ran for 1,147 yards and 24
scores as the backup last season, and picked
up transfer Pedro Manigault, who will likely be
the starting quarterback. Goose Creek contin-
ues its trend of being one of the top teams.
8North Augusta (4A): Brian Thomas is the new coach at North Augusta after leading
North Carolina’s Northern Guilford to the state
finals last season. He coached for 20 years in
South Carolina before heading north and knows
the expectations for his team.
9Summerville (4A): Legendary coach John McKissick continues to win games with the
Green Wave. It’s been six seasons since the
Green Wave played for a state title, but they
have some athletes to get them back there.
10 South Pointe (3A): Coach Strait Herron has 25 seniors returning. The Stallions
were good as a 4A team and the expectation
is for them to dominate on the 3A level. A non-region schedule full of 4A schools will ready
them for the playoffs.
11Dillon (2A): The Wildcats have been the most dominant 2A team in recent
years, winning four titles in the last six seasons.
A good group of seniors graduated, but coach
Jackie Hayes has a dynasty brewing and plenty
of talent coming up.
12Spartanburg (4A): The Vikings finished 6-6 after rattling off five wins to open
last season. Speedster Tavien Feaster, who won
the state’s 100- and 200-meter track titles, will
be the main weapon and coach Chris Miller will
try to get him the ball in every way imaginable.
13Sumter (4A): The state finalists lost heir coach in late May. They were a
young team last year that got better as the
season progressed – the Gamecocks started
1-3 – and may have overachieved. But expecta-
tions are there for this season.
14Dorman (4A): J.J. Arcega-Whiteside ( 1,475 receiving yards and 15 touchdowns)
returns but Dorman needs other wide receivers to
take the pressure off him and make the offense
more balanced. Just like every year, though, Dor-
man is going to be one of the best teams.
15Myrtle Beach (3A): Mickey Wilson’s team won another title last year and
returns a load of skill players. The concern is
how the offensive line, with just two starters
back, comes together in the early going. If that
happens, which Wilson expects it will, look for
Myrtle Beach to make some noise.
16 Marlboro County (3A): Landon John- son ( 2,760 passing yards and 30 touch-
downs; and 978 rushing yards and 11 scores
last year) is back, and that is enough to make
the Bulldogs one of the top 3A schools.
17Boiling Springs (4A): The Bulldogs broke Gaffney’s 30-plus year home
playoff winning streak last year and return a
18 York (4A): The Cougars rolled to 11 wins last season and eight defensive starters
are back. While graduation was hard on the of-
fense, there is enough young talent to push the
Cougars to another successful season.
19Hartsville (3A): The Red Foxes lost a tough second-round playoff game last
season to finish the year 11-2.
20 Newberry (2A): Phil Strickland contin- ues to coach winners and this Newber-
ry team is loaded with talent. His offensive and
defensive fronts are back, along with exciting
quarterback Yafari Werts.
21 Christ Church (1A): Christ Church needs one win to tie the state record for
consecutive victories. That should happen and
Christ Church will continue its streak of state
championships, which is now at three.
22Hillcrest (4A): The knock is that the Rams are a Greenville County school
where winning isn’t part of the tradition.
23 Blythewood (4A): The Bengals’ young quarterback, David Isreal ( 1,766 pass-
ing yards and 17 scores), will help them better
last season’s 7-5 mark.
24Batesburg-Leesville (2A): A new coach and a new offensive system
won’t stop Batesburg-Leesville from being one
of the 2A teams to beat. The defending 2A Divi-
sion II champions have the chance to repeat.
25Gaffney (4A): The 1-2 offensive punch of Shaq Davidson and Hyleck Foster is
gone, so the Indians must find athletes to replace
that production. But that won’t stop the Gaffney
faithful from harboring high expectations and the
Indians will respond with wins.
1Northwestern (4A): Northwestern has a new quarterback but has a proven system in place and the athletes to make it work. A tough non-region
schedule will prepare them for the playoffs, where
they will once again win games. Big things are
expected from this program once again this year.
Northwestern is led by senior athlete Dupree Hart.
Top 25 Teams South Carolina