Top 10 most challenging high school football schedules in Georgia for the year 2024

The release of the 2024 Georgia high school football schedules has brought some changes due to reclassification. With fewer classifications and more teams per region, championship-caliber teams are now grouped together, leading to highly competitive region games. When you add in strong non-region opponents, it’s clear that some teams will face particularly challenging schedules this year. Here are the 10 Georgia high school football teams we believe will have the toughest week-by-week tests in 2024.

10. Gainesville (Region 7-5A)

The Red Elephants and head coach Josh Niblett are facing a tough start to the season with four consecutive road games, and five of their first six games being away from their home stadium at City Park. They will be traveling to Marietta, Moody, Wetslake, and Carrollton for those away games, and will have a total of seven road games this year, including one at Roswell. However, they will have the defending state champion Milton as one of their home games.

Gainesville’s 2024 Football Schedule:

  • 8/16 at Marietta
  • 8/23 at Moody (Moody, Alabama)
  • 8/30 at Westlake
  • 9/13 at Carrollton
  • 9/20 vs Lanier
  • 9/27 at Johns Creek
  • 10/04 vs Seckinger
  • 10/11 vs Milton
  • 10/18 at Chattahoochee
  • 10/25 at Roswell

9. Ware County (Region 1-4A)

This year, the Gators have a tough schedule, facing off against state champions Coffee and Perry, as well as a home game against Benedictine, who has won a state title in two out of the past three seasons. In the middle of the season, Ware County will also play Jacksonville’s Bartram Trail and Tallahassee’s Lincoln, both of which advanced deep in the 2023 FHSAA state playoffs.

Ware County’s 2024 Football Schedule:

  • 8/16 at Appling
  • 8/23 at Coffee
  • 8/30 vs Bainbridge
  • 9/6 vs Bartram Trail (Jacksonville, Florida)
  • 9/13 Open
  • 9/20 vs Lincoln (Tallahassee, Florida)
  • 9/27 vs Benedictine
  • 10/4 at New Hampstead
  • 10/11 Open
  • 10/18 At Perry
  • 10/25 vs Warner Robins
  • 11/01 at Wayne County

8. Milton (Region 7-5A)

The defending Class 7A state champions have moved to Class 5A for the 2024 season, and head coach Ben Reaves and his Eagles will be facing tough competition with games against three nationally ranked teams. Their season kicks off with a home game against Buford, followed by a trip to South Florida to play American Heritage in the Broward County High School National Football Showcase. After returning home to face Alpharetta, Milton will have four of their next five games away from Eagles Stadium, including matchups against Blessed Trinity and nationally ranked Gainesville. They will wrap up the regular season against the formidable Roswell Hornets.

Milton’s 2024 Football Schedule:

  • 8/16 vs Buford
  • 8/22 at American Heritage (Broward County High School National Football Showcase in  Fort Lauderdale, Florida)
  • 8/30 vs Alpharetta
  • 9/6 Open
  • 9/13 at Blessed Trinity
  • 9/20 vs Chattahoochee
  • 9/27 at Seckinger
  • 10/4 at Lanier
  • 10/11 at Gainesville
  • 10/25 vs Johns Creek
  • 11/1 vs Roswell

7. Coffee (Region 2-5A)

Coffee faces a challenging schedule this season, including games against other state champions like Thomas County Central and Ware County. They will also be playing against tough Florida teams, including Mainland from Daytona Beach. The regular season finale will be a showdown against Thomas County Central, another undefeated champion from last year.

Coffee’s 2024 Football Schedule:

  • 8/16 at Bainbridge
  • 8/23 vs Ware County
  • 8/30 vs Columbia County (Lake City, Florida)
  • 9/7 Open
  • 9/13 vs Gadsden County (Havana, Florida)
  • 9/20 vs Mainland (Daytona Beach, Florida)
  • 9/27 vs Warner Robins
  • 10/04 at Lee County
  • 10/11 Open
  • 10/18 vs Houston County
  • 10/25 vs Veterans
  • 11/01 at Thomas County Central

6. Bainbridge (Region 1-3A)

New head coach Jay Walls will face a challenging schedule as he leads the Bainbridge Bearcats into the upcoming season. The team will face tough opponents such as defending Class 5A state champion Coffee and Class 2A semifinalist Cook in the first few weeks. Additionally, former head coach Jeff Littleton will bring his new team, Tift County, to face the Bearcats on September 6th. The following week, the Bearcats will have a tough away game against defending Class 6A state champion Thomas County Central.

Bainbridge’s 2024 Football Schedule:

  • 8/16 vs Coffee
  • 8/23 vs Cook
  • 8/30 at Ware County
  • 9/6 vs Tift County
  • 9/13 at Thomas County Central
  • 9/27 at Cairo
  • 10/4 vs Westover
  • 10/11 Open
  • 10/18 vs Peach County
  • 10/25 at Monroe
  • 11/01 vs Dougherty

5. Appling County (Region 3-2A)

The Pirates have a tough schedule in 2024, facing off against some formidable opponents. Pierce County, the Class 2A state champions from last year, and Swainsboro, who played in the Class 1A-DI championship game, will be tough competition. Cook and Fitzgerald, both Final Four teams in 2023, will also pose a challenge for the Pirates. Additionally, Ware County, who won a state title in 2022, and Crisp County, both made it to the second round of the playoffs last year. Suwannee from Live Oak, Florida, who made it to the regional quarterfinals in 2023, will also be one of the Pirates’ opponents this year.

Appling County’s 2024 Football Schedule:

  • 8/16 vs Ware County
  • 8/23 Open
  • 8/30 Wayne County
  • 9/6 at Swainsboro
  • 9/13 at DeLand (DeLand, Florida)
  • 9/20 vs Suwannee (Live Oak, Florida)
  • 9/27 vs Fitzgerald
  • 10/11 vs Crisp County
  • 10/18 at Tattnall County
  • 10/25 at Cook
  • 11/01 vs Pierce County

4. Lee County (Region 2-5A)

The Trojans’ non-region 2024 schedule, under the guidance of head coach Dean Fabrizio, features matchups against two of the state’s top programs in the first month of the season. They will open against Warner Robins and then face Colquitt County two weeks later. Following this tough start, Lee County will then take on defending state champions Thomas County Central and Coffee in back-to-back weeks to kick off their region schedule.

Lee County’s 2024 Football Schedule:

  • 8/16 vs Warner Robins
  • 8/23 vs Hapeville Charter
  • 8/30 at Tift County
  • 9/6 Open
  • 9/13 at Colquitt County
  • 9/20 vs Wekiva (Florida)
  • 9/27 vs Thomas County Central
  • 10/4 vs Coffee
  • 10/11 Open
  • 10/18 at Veterans
  • 10/25 at Northside (Warner Robins)
  • 11/01 vs Houston County

3. Wayne County (Region 1-4A)

Region 1-4A is considered one of the toughest regions in the state, and Wayne County’s schedule is especially challenging, as they will be facing off against five state champions from the last three seasons, including some tough region rivals. The team will be led by new head coach John Mohring, who previously coached at Savannah Country Day.

Wayne County’s 2024 Football Schedule:

  • 8/16 vs Glynn Academy
  • 8/23 vs Brunswick
  • 8/30 at Appling County
  • 9/06 vs Pierce County
  • 9/13 at Richmond Hill
  • 9/20 Open
  • 9/27 at Warner Robins
  • 10/04 vs Perry
  • 10/18 vs Benedictine
  • 10/25 at New Hampstead
  • 11/01 vs Ware County

2. Benedictine (Region 1-4A)

In 2024, Benedictine’s football schedule features an unprecedented matchup against Buford and a challenging game against Archbishop Moeller. Head coach Danny Britt’s Cadets will face tough non-region opponents including Rabun Gap, making their schedule one of the most difficult in Georgia regardless of classification.

Benedictine’s 2024 Football Schedule:

  • 8/17 at Rabun Gap (Erk Russell Classic in Statesboro, Georgia)
  • 8/23 at Buford
  • 8/30 vs Burke County
  • 9/7 Open
  • 9/14 at Archbishop Moeller (Ironton Gridiron Classic Ohio vs USA in Ironton, Ohio)
  • 9/20 vs Westminster
  • 9/27 at Ware County
  • 10/4 at Warner Robins
  • 10/11 vs New Hampstead
  • 10/18 at Wayne County
  • 10/25 vs Perry
  • 11/1 Open

1. Veterans (Region 2-5A)

The Veterans Warhawks have a tough 2024 high school football schedule in Georgia. After starting the season on the road against strong opponents like Jones County and Starr’s Mill, they will face three 2023 state champions and other formidable teams like Perry, Thomas County Central, Coffee, Lee County, Houston County, and Northside (Warner Robins). This will be a challenging test for head coach Josh Ingram and his team.

Veterans’s 2024 Football Schedule:

  • 8/16 at Jones County
  • 8/23 at Statesboro
  • 8/30 at Starr’s Mill
  • 9/7 Open
  • 9/13 vs Perry
  • 9/20 at Warner Robins
  • 9/27 vs Houston County
  • 10/4 at Thomas County Central
  • 10/11 Open
  • 10/18 vs Lee County
  • 10/25 at Coffee
  • 11/1 vs Northside (Warner Robins)
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