For high school football fans in Georgia, the chance to see the best players in the state lies here in Cobb County.
This week, Rivals.com published its list of the state's top 130 players for the class of 2020.
The county has the top two recruits in Marietta tight end Arik Gilbert and Hillgrove defensive lineman Myles Murphy, both of whom are five-star recruits. Cobb is also home to six of the top 15, and 15 on the full list. Those 15 players have a combined 260 Division I offers, with an average Rivals star rating of 3.67.
Marietta leads with way with nine players on the list, including six on offense -- Gilbert (1), quarterback Harrison Bailey (8), offensive lineman Jake Wray (31), wide receivers Kobe Stewart (61) and Taji Johnson (84) and running back Kimani Vidal (92). On the defensive side are linebacker B.J. Ojulari (15), and defensive backs Rashad Torrence (30) and Dawson Ellington (72).
McEachern is second with three players -- defensive lineman Jamil Burroughs (10), wide receiver Javon Baker (12) and running back Jordan Simmons (39) -- while Hillgrove, Sprayberry and Wheeler each have one.
In addition, Gilbert, Murphy, Bailey, Burroughs, Baker and Ojulari are all ranked among Rivals' top 250 seniors in the country. All six play in Region 3AAAAAAA, which should make for some intriguing games this fall, and a lot of college coaches making visits. Gilbert and Ojulari have yet to decide on where they will play in college, nor have six of the other of Cobb's top players.
"It's a great thing for players to test themselves against elite competition," Marietta coach Richard Morgan said. "It's great for football in and around Cobb County."
Marietta will face off with McEachern on Oct. 18, then will face Hillgrove on Nov. 1. In the latter, there will be a good chance that the top two players in the state will have to block one another, as Gilbert will try to keep Murphy from putting pressure on Bailey.
Marietta will also face Grayson on Sept. 13, which has five players ranked in the Georgia 130, and it opens the season against Rome , which has two.
Archrivals McEachern and Hillgrove will open region opener against one another Oct. 11. The Indians will also match up with Cedar Grove, which has two players on the list.
New McEachern coach Franklin Stephens us looking forward to the matchups, but, more importantly, he's looking for his highly ranked seniors to grab hold of the team's leadership roles.
"You really have to cultivate that talent and get them to work in a team atmosphere," Stephens said. "They have to really focus on McEachern. It's something to work toward. You can be very talented, but, if you can't be mentally tough as a team, it can be difficult."
On Aug. 30, Sprayberry will face off against Wheeler. That game will showcase Yellow Jackets defensive lineman Marlon Krakue (79) and Wildcats wide recevier Ricky White (104).
Rivals 2020 Georgia Top 130
Name, School HT/WT Pos. State National College
Arik Gilbert, Marietta 6-5, 248 TE 1 7 Undecided
Myles Murphy, Hillgrove 6-4, 255 DL 2 11 Clemson
Harrison Bailey, Marietta 6-4, 220 QB 8 43 Tennessee
Jamil Burroughs, McEachern 6-3, 320 DL 10 81 Georgia
Javon Baker, McEachern 6-1, 183 WR 12 95 Alabama
B.J. Ojulari, Marietta 6-3, 220 LB 15 163 Undecided
Rashad Torrence, Marietta 6-0, 195 DB 30 Florida
Jake Wray, Marietta 6-5, 290 OL 31 Colorado
Jordan Simmons, McEachern 5-11,180 RB 39 Undecided
Kobe Stewart, Marietta 6-3, 185 WR 61 Undecided
Dawson Ellington, Marietta 5-11,172 DB 72 Undecided
Marlon Krakue, Sprayberry 6-4, 220 DL 79 Undecided
Taji Johnson, Marietta 6-3, 200 WR 84 Boston College
Kimani Vidal, Marietta 5-9, 204 RB 92 Undecided
Ricky White, Wheeler 6-1, 165 WR 104 Undecided