Bremen: The Blue Devils' trip to the Class A quarterfinals last season was the fourth in school history (2004, '05, '08), as Bremen finished with a 9-4 record. Bremen has gone to the playoffs in each of coach Ricky Tolleson's 12 seasons leading the team as he returns for his 13th season in charge. The Blue Devils graduated a pair of all-state performers in offensive/defensive lineman Noah Mills and quarterback Brent Copeland, but return all-state running back Voltaire Driver for his junior campaign. Bremen has had at least one all-state player every year since 2003.
Chattahoochee County: The Panthers are the third newcomer to Region 5-AA, as they went 2-8 in their final season in Region 4-A last season. The program began in 2006, and reached the playoffs in each of its first four seasons under coach Josh Kemp. After a one-year spell under Shaun Pope, current coach Russell Morgan took over last season and returns for his second year this fall. Russell formerly coached at Washington-Wilkes and led the Tigers to six straight playoff appearances — including the 2005 Class A state final — in his six seasons.
Heard County: The Braves took third in last year's Region 5-AA, going 6-5 with a first-round exit in the Class AA state playoffs. Coach Tim Barron returns for his 11th season leading Heard County. Barron took over an 0-11 team and turned it into a 10-2 season in 2002 and followed it with an 11-1 campaign in 2003. The Braves have made the postseason every year under Barron.
Jordan: After an 0-10 season last year in Region 5-AA, first-year coach Jim Brown will look to get the Jackets in the win column for the first time since Oct. 10, 2010. Jordan has not had a winning season since 1993, have been .500 only once in that time and have five winless seasons since then.
Kendrick: The Cherokees have struggled over the past five seasons, going 2-8 last year with just seven wins in five years. Head coach Jerry Dukes returns for his fifth season, as he tries to lead Kendrick to its first playoff appearance since 1999 when the team competed in Class AAA. The Cherokees split the 1991 Class AAA state championship with Lakeside after tying 14-14 in the title game.
Manchester: The Blue Devils missed out on the playoffs with a 4-6 record in 2011 after back-to-back winning seasons and playoff appearances in 2009-10. Coach Greg Oglesby is in his second stint at Manchester. Oglesby coached from 1994-99, including two state semifinal appearances, a state final appearance and state championship in 1997 — all in Class A — and returned to Manchester in 2003. The Blue Devils had their best year since in 2006, going 9-3 with a trip to the second round of the state playoffs.
Spencer: After success in the 1950s and 60s leading to four state titles, the Greenwave Owls haven't had much success in recent history and went 2-8 in 2011. Spencer has not had a winning record since 1977. Coach Oliver Davis had the most success in his first season when Spencer went 5-5 in 2007 — just two years removed from three straight 0-10 seasons.
Temple: The Tigers had the best season in their 23-year history in 2011, going 6-5 falling in the first round of the Class AA playoffs to powerhouse Buford. Coach Seth Rogers is starting his sixth season at Temple and turned an 0-10 team into a playoff contender during that time. The trip to the playoffs was the first since 2005. The Tigers graduated DeiJon Tyler, an all-state performer, and lost fellow all-state running back Jermaine Hutchinson to transfer.