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Principal's family a 'house divided' for North-Grayson game

Special Photo Brooke and Ed Shaddix with their children Payton and Nick will be on opposite sides of the North Gwinnett-Grayson second round playoff game.

Special Photo Brooke and Ed Shaddix with their children Payton and Nick will be on opposite sides of the North Gwinnett-Grayson second round playoff game.

GRAYSON -- Win, lose or draw in the second round playoff game between North Gwinnett and Grayson, the Shaddix family plans to decorate a Grayson Christmas tree on Saturday morning.

Never mind that Ed Shaddix, the father and husband in the family, is the principal at North.

"We'll be decorating the Christmas tree and we have one that's a Grayson tree and we will be preparing to go on to the third round," wife Brooke said. "That's what I believe is going to happen."

Brooke and the couple's two sons, Payton and Nick, are also Grayson supporters. Payton is on the ninth-grade team and Nick, a fourth-grader, plays youth football on a team coached by his father and Grayson head coach Mickey Conn.

Ed and Brooke both said the game is great for the communities because the fan bases are passionate and the teams are talented and well-coached.

As a parent, Ed said he supports and is plugged into the Grayson community, and Brooke said the family supports North, but this week is different, for both sides.

"It's definitely a house divided," said Brooke, who is active in the Grayson booster club, and is the program's ninth-grade representative.

When he's asked if the kids could move to the North cluster, Ed said, "I couldn't pry them out of this community."

The family, though, doesn't plan to spend much time together during the game.

Ed will be on the North side, the kids will be on the Grayson side, and Brooke will be working the concession stand or at the spirit table.

"We will be there dressed in Grayson from head to toe, and he will be in red and black," Brooke said.

That's not a problem for Ed.

"There's no doubt I'll be on the North side with our kids trying to beat Grayson," he said. "I support them all the way through."

The programs last met in the second round of the 2010 playoffs, a 23-19 Grayson victory. Ed said it's an especially difficult second round matchup for the Bulldogs, and he would have preferred to meet the Rams deeper in the playoffs.

"There's no doubt Grayson has a phenomenal team, they've done an incredible job," Ed said. "Realistically, we go into this thing with nothing to lose. We hope to be there in the fourth quarter, but it's not the game you want to draw in the second round."

Regardless of the outcome, Ed said he's prepared for the fallout.

"I'll either be the black sheep, or Grayson will have won and it'll be 'I told you so,'" he said. "No matter what, I'll be on the receiving end of whatever happens."