As of Thursday, August 30, 2012
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Gwinnett Daily Post
Buford Wolves (7-AAA)
-- Coach: Jess Simpson
-- 2011 record: 14-1
-- TEAM PAGE
Elbert County Blue Devils (8-AAA)
-- Coach: Sid Fritts
-- 2011 record: 11-2
A senior-heavy Buford team destroyed Elbert in last year's Class AA quarterfinals and in the process completely bottled up star running back Tyshon Dye. A victory Friday likely won't be as easy for the Wolves, who must play well to match their efforts against Dye, a Clemson commitment who rushed for 1,561 yards and 21 touchdowns as a junior.
Big and fast, Dye will run against a much different Buford defense that took a big hit from graduation. Georgia commitment Josh Cardiello and Mikey Bart are two of the most experienced defensive players up front, while defensive back Jaylen Mize also is tested. Outside of those three, the unit turns to a new pack of Wolves.
The same holds true on offense outside of Cardiello on the line and Bart at tight end, though running back Dontravious Wilson got plenty of carries late in games last year.
Buford is most experienced in the kicking game behind senior David Petroni, whose strong leg gives the Wolves an edge over most foes with his field goals, punts and kickoffs.
-- Last meeting: Buford won 49-13 last season
-- Directions to Elbert County High School: I-85 north to Lavonia/Elberton exit. Proceed into Elberton and make a right at the first light. The Granite Bowl is straight ahead. (Stadium info)