A region title and an air-tight playoff race will feature among the three contests that will take place live on the airwaves of the Jacobs Media family of stations on Friday.
Technically, there is no Region 8-AAAA championship game -- but for all intents and purposes this week's showdown between Chestatee and Monroe Area, which will take place on 102.9 FM, is exactly that.
The War Eagles and Purple Hurricanes are tied for first place in 8-AAAA with 5-0 league records, and the winner of Friday's game will clinch both a title and the top seed for the upcoming playoffs in what could be a classic.
Both programs pride themselves on physical running attacks, and while Monroe Area (8-0, 5-0 Region 8-AAAA) fields an explosive unit, averaging 54.5 points per game, Chestatee (7-1, 5-0) will provide the toughest defensive challenge the fourth-ranked Purple Hurricanes have faced to date.
The game could have the added twist of missing a star player. Monroe Area quarterback Stanton Truitt was ejected -- along with six other Purple Hurricanes -- after a brawl during last week's 68-14 win over Madison County, which could mean a suspension for the Auburn-bound senior. According to the Atlanta-Journal Constitution, the GHSA is still reviewing the incident and hopes to make an announcement on the Monroe players' status on Tuesday.
Regardless, fans should expect fireworks in Monroe. The Purple Hurricanes claimed the 8-AAAA title over Chestatee in this same battle last season, pulling away for a 35-14 win in a contest that the Purple Hurricanes led just 21-14 before scoring with 13 seconds left in the half to take control.
While there are no region titles on the line in Region 7-AAA on Friday, the White County at West Hall contest -- which will air on AM 550 -- carries major postseason implications.
The Warriors (6-2, 4-1 Region 7-AAA) currently hold the No. 2 spot in the postseason seeding race, courtesy their 21-7 defeat of North Hall (7-1, 4-1), while the Spartans (5-3, 3-2) sit in fourth place.
West Hall is in search of its first state playoff berth since 2002 and knows that a win on Friday would mean a huge step closer toward that goal. Meanwhile, White County is gunning for its best regular season since 2010, when the Warriors hosted, and won, a first round postseason game against LaGrange.
This week's face-off will feature two offenses that rely on the run -- though in slightly different fashion. And both defenses will have their hands full -- the Spartans in slowing White County's punishing triple option, led by bruising fullback Dalton Whitfield and punctuated by speedy rushes from Coley Loudermilk and Maurice Sutton. Meanwhile, the Warriors must contain a multi-faceted West Hall attack that features fullback Antonio Pittman and big-play threats Tyquan Statham and Kwon Williams.
Also in 7-AAA, region leader Buford will play host to a dangerous East Hall, while North Hall travels to winless Banks County. Fannin County will also trek to Dawson County to face a Tigers squad that is still in the running for the playoffs if it can win its final two games -- including the season finale against West Hall in Dawsonville.
Region 8-AAAAA will also have a de facto championship game -- a rematch between Flowery Branch and Gainesville -- but not this week. On Friday, the Red Elephants will travel to Loganville in a game broadcast live on 1240 AM, looking to avoid a repeat of last year's shock defeat to the Red Devils in Gainesville.
Showing that anything can happen on any given Friday night, Loganville pulled off perhaps the upset of the 2012 season, hauling down eventual state champ Gainesville 46-41. The fourth-ranked Red Elephants (7-1, 6-0 Region 8-AAAAA) will be focused on avoiding similar results in 2013 against the Red Devils (4-4, 3-3), who still have an outside shot at reaching the postseason -- if they can win out and Heritage, Conyers falls to winless Apalachee.
There are plenty of other key games around northeast Georgia this week, including Jackson County's trip to Region 8-AAA leader Elbert County. The Panthers (3-5, 3-2 Region 8-AAA) have revitalized their season and can ensure another trip to state playoffs with wins in their last two games -- though a loss to Elbert (6-2, 5-0) would not eliminate Jackson County.
North Forsyth must also keep Johns Creek winless in order to stay in the playoff race in Region 6-AAAAAA, while North Gwinnett will look to bounce back from its first loss of the season at Mountain View in Region 7-AAAAAA.
It's week 10, and there are still plenty of questions. We at Jacobs Media can't wait to see the answers.
AREA HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL SCHEDULE, NOV. 1
Apalachee at Heritage, Conyers
Chestatee at Monroe Area -- Radio: 102.9 FM
Clarke Central at Winder-Barrow
East Hall at Buford
Fannin County at Dawson County
Franklin County at East Jackson
Gainesville at Loganville -- Radio: 1240 AM
Greene County at Rabun County
Jackson County at Elbert County
Jefferson at Riverside Military
Lakeview Academy at Towns County
Lanier at Lumpkin County
Mill Creek at Habersham Central
North Forsyth at Johns Creek
North Gwinnett at Mountain View
North Hall at Banks County
Stephens County at Eastside
Union County at Social Circle
White County at West Hall -- Radio: AM 550