On Saturdays, fan loyalties may go to the Bulldogs, Yellow Jackets or another team, but on Friday, everybody in Elbert County is a Blue Devil, while all Valdosta High students and alumni are Wildcats.
Because of that loyalty, it's no surprise Georgia has some of the largest high school football stadiums in the nation. In fact, if Georgia's largest high school football stadium was placed in Alaska, Maine, New Hampshire, South Dakota or Vermont, it would be the largest stadium in those respected states.
Whether students are training for the season in the summer, playing on Friday nights in the fall or playing for state titles in winter, people will be seated at stadiums throughout the state, ready to cheer on their community.
Here are the 10 largest high school football stadiums in the Peach State.
Tara Stadium in Jonesboro
It seems like everything in Clayton County is named for the home featured in "Gone With the Wind." Tara Stadium in Jonesboro is no different. The stadium is home to the Jonesboro High Cardinals and seats approximately 11,000 fans of Friday night football.
Home to the Valdosta High Wildcats, one of the state's most storied programs, Bazemore-Hyder Stadium has a capacity to match its traditions. The stadium also serves as the home field for the nearby Valdosta State University Blazers.
Hugh Mills Stadium
Hugh Mills Stadium is located in the Southwest Georgia City of Albany and is home to the Albany High Indians, Dougherty High Trojans, Monroe (Albany) High Tornadoes and Westover (Albany) High Patriots.
Glynn County Stadium
Near the Atlantic Coast, Glynn County Stadium is the home of the Brunswick High School Pirates and the Glynn Academy Terrors. The stadium is often used for playoff games for surrounding communities that don't have the home stadium capacity.
Waycross Memorial Stadium
Also in South Georgia, near the Okefenokee, is Waycross Memorial Stadium. The stadium is home to the Ware County Gators. The 12,000-capacity stadium was renovated to allow use for other sporting events, such as soccer and track.
Valdosta vs. Lowndes is one of the greatest rivalries in Georgia high school football. Lowndes' Martin Stadium narrowly tops Valdosta for the larger venue, where the Vikings vehemently defend their turf.
Walter H. Cantrell
With a capacity of 12,500, the McEachern High School Indians have Walter H. Cantrell Stadium all to themselves. While they claim the largest high school stadium in the state because of their exclusive use of facilities, the Cobb County mammoth falls short of stadiums used by multiple schools.
Savannah Memorial Stadium
When the rival games take place in the Garden City, the Friday night lights shine over Savannah Memorial Stadium. With a capacity of 15,000, teams representing Chatham County schools play on the grounds at least once a year.
Granite Bowl Stadium
Deemed as the Granite Capital of the World, it only makes sense that Elberton would have a stadium constructed entirely out of the rock. The stadium can hold slightly over 15,000 and is home to the Elbert County Blue Devils. It may also be the only high school stadium that is deemed a state historic site.
James R. Hallford
The largest high school stadium lies in the Atlanta suburb of Clarkston. James R. Hallford Stadium is home to several of the county's high school teams including the Clarkston High Rams, Martin Luther King High Lions and Stephenson High Jaguars. The stadium also was home to the Atlanta Silverbacks, a minor league soccer team, through 2004.
High School Football Stadiums that missed the cut:
There are several gigantic stadiums used for high school football in Georgia. Here are three that barely missed the Top 10.
- Lakewood Stadium - Atlanta Public Schools (10,500)
- Mack Tharpe Stadium - Colquitt County High (10,000)
- Chris Gilman Stadium - Camden County High (10,000)
This article was originally published in 2016.
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