While they may not have realized it at the time, when Buford and Calhoun met for the Georgia Class AA state championship game, they were essentially playing for the national small schools championship.
Calhoun edged Buford 27-24 in overtime and finished 15-0 on the season. The win allowed Calhoun to finish the season as the highest-rated small school in the MaxPreps Freeman Computer Rankings
with a rating of 56.8.
Buford did not finish far behind, however, dropping only to No. 3 with a 54.8 rating. Anadarko, a 3A state champion from Oklahoma, is the No. 2 team with a 56.5 rating.
The Top 10 list of the nation's best small schools is compiled using state enrollment divisions as a guide. For the most part, all teams considered for the small school rankings play in enrollment divisions that consist of schools with an enrollment of less than 1,000 students. Private schools that have enrollments under 1,000 but play in a higher enrollment division were not considered for this list.
Here's a look at the nation's top 10 small school football teams for 2011.
1. Calhoun (Ga.), 15-0, 56.8
Calhoun did the unthinkable when it defeated Buford 27-24 in overtime in the Georgia Class AA state championship game. Led by Class AA state MVP Taylor Lamb
, Calhoun went 15-0 on the year to claim its first state title since 1952. Lamb, a junior transfer from Greer (S.C.), led the state in passing yards with 3,638. Teammate Alex Kirby
earned state defensive MVP honors and the team had four other all-state players as well, including Ben Lamb
(WR), Tyler King
(OL), Hunter Knight
(LB) and Clay Johnson