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Bryan County’s Freeman recognized as Class A-D1 top coach
Cherard Freeman
Cherard Freemans stands in the Bryan County Redskins’ locker room

The Georgia High School Football Daily, during the course of the football season, gives daily updates on the comings and goings of high school football in Georgia while striving to recognize top players and teams.

The GHSFD compiles offensive statistics, for example, on the leading rushers, passers and receivers in the state in all classes in addition to tracking region races and playoff possibilities for all teams.

One particular feature is dedicated to ranking the top five teams and their head coaches in each classification based on their improvement in the computer Maxwell Ratings from previous seasons. The nine coaching winners will be presented with awards Feb. 6 at the Georgia Athletics Coaches Association – Falcons luncheon in Macon.

To no one’s surprise the top coach in Class A-D1 is Bryan County’s Cherard Freeman who led the record-setting Redskins (12-2) to a berth in the Final Four of the state playoffs where they lost to eventual state champion Prince Avenue.

Freeman took over a moribund program four years ago and after a winless initial season saw the Redskins improve by leaps and bounds. In his second season Bryan County won three games and improved to six wins and a playoff berth the following season before exploding this past season.

The Redskins posted back-to-back winning seasons for the first time in school history while capturing their first ever region championship and setting numerous school records including wins (12).

In winning the award the Redskins met or exceeded each criteria set by GHSDF.

The scoring was based on improvements made in the Maxwell Ratings. Only teams with winning records qualified and each team and coach must have made the playoffs with an improved playoff seeding or state playoff finish from the previous year.

The objective of the award, sponsored by the Atlanta Falcons, is to recognize not only the challenge of improving a team but also making it relevant on the state level.

That is exactly what Freeman, along with his veteran staff, did as they got the Redskins to exceed all expectations. A year ago, Bryan County was 6-5 and lost in the first round of the state playoffs.

Based on the weekly improvement tracker’s formula the Redskins had a plus-20.93 improvement factor to easily outdistance second-place Commerce which was plus-8.11, Trion (plus-6.96), Mount Vernon (plus-5.53) and Pelham (plus-4.85) rounded out the top five.

Bryan County defeated both Commerce and Pelham in the playoffs.

Freeman was also the Region 3A-D1 Coach of the Year while he saw players Austin Clemons named Region Player of the Year, Tanner Ennis Defensive Player of the Year and running back Jacari Clemons Offensive Player of the Year.

Portal’s Jason McEachin was the top coach in Class A-D11 as he, like Freeman, led the Panthers to their first ever region title and had his team finish with a plus-21.87 rating. Portal and Bryan County will be region opponents next year in Class A-D11 as a result of the GHSA’s recent reclassification of schools.

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