The calendar flipped to another year, but the consistent success of the Rome High football team continued in 2017. In fact, it got better.

There was the undefeated season, 15-0 for the first time in school history. The 38-0 shutout of previously undefeated Warner Robins in the Class 5A state championship game brought about a second title in as many seasons. The No. 1 ranking that lasted the entire season.

In addition to that was the increased production of two of the Wolves’ standout players, both of whom have helped turn the program around in the span of four years and brought a powerful pedigree to Rome High football.

Because of this, quarterback Knox Kadum is the 2017 Rome News-Tribune Offensive Player of the Year, while defensive end Adam Anderson is the 2017 Rome News-Tribune Defensive Player of the Year.

This past season, Anderson, the 6-foot-4 Georgia signee, recorded 83 tackles, 35 tackles for a loss, 15 sacks, one interception, three forced fumbles, two fumbles recovered and one fumble recovered for a touchdown.

The senior separated himself as one of the top defensive players in the state, having been ranked as the No. 2 outside linebacker recruit in the nation and named the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s All-Classification Player of the Year.

Just recently, Anderson was awarded the Atlanta Touchdown Club’s Bobby Dodd National Lineman of the Year, an honor previously won by players such as Trent Thompson, Robert Nkemdiche and Jadeveon Clowney.

Anderson was just one part of a defensive line that was easily one of the best in the state, featuring fellow Division I recruits Jamarcus Chatman, Ja’Quon Griffin and TJ Cammack.

Chatman and Griffin have received offers from programs like Georgia Tech and Florida State while Cammack is committed to Navy.

Kadum was a junior this past season but had the poise and experience of a veteran having started as a freshman and helped steer the team as a sophomore, including scoring two touchdowns against Buford in the 2016 state championship game.

In 2017, the 6-foot-2 signal caller threw for 2,046 yards and 23 touchdowns, completing 114 of 160 passes and throwing just three interceptions. He ran for another 737 yards and 11 touchdowns, and even got in on the Wolves’ “wildcat” plays, catching a pair of passes for 32 yards and another score.

With a backfield that included Kadum, fellow junior Jamious Griffin, and seniors Jalynn Sykes and Marquez Kirby, Rome rushed for more than 4,000 yards.

The Wolves would finish the season as the highest-scoring team in GHSA history, scoring 758 points, an average of 50.5 points per game, with the work of offensive linemen like all-state selection Tyler Lovingood and Jackson Norton giving Kadum plenty of time and room to run.



Pos. Name School

QB Knox Kadum* Rome

QB Trevon Wofford Cedartown

RB Jamious Griffin Rome

RB Tijai Whatley Darlington

RB Zabrion Whatley Rockmart

WR Xavier Roberts-Donaldson Rome

WR Janson Slaughter Unity Chr.

TE Jacob Hunt Darlington

OL Tyler Lovingood Rome

OL Mason O’Neal Coosa

OL Dustin Pope Chattooga

OL Tate Ratledge Darlington

OL Hayden Smith Model

K Emanuel Gonzalez Rome

ATH Tae Hammond Pepperell

*RN-T Offensive Player of the Year


Pos. Name School

DL Adam Anderson* Rome

DL Elijah Ball Darlington

DL Sean Brown Coosa

DL Jamarcus Chatman Rome

DL Ja’Quon Griffin Rome

LB Logan Blevins Trion

LB Chandler Hubbard Coosa

LB Malachi Mack Chattooga

LB Kelan Stepp Darlington

DB DeMarco Brown GSD

DB Connor Chandler Pepperell

DB Trai Hodges Rome

DB Karl Swiger Darlington

P CJ Martin Chattooga

RET Kenon Dixon Coosa

*RN-T Defensive Player of the Year



Pos. Name School

QB Trevor Thomas Pepperell

RB Jalen Hodge Coosa

RB Tony Mathis Cedartown

RB Jalynn Sykes Rome

WR Devin Price Chattooga

WR TJ Watkins Pepperell

OL Aiden Gaines Rome

OL Cade Holder Rockmart

OL Jackson Norton Rome

OL Caleb Shiflett Coosa

OL Brian Tanner Pepperell

K Ramiro Alanis Pepperell

ATH Gavin Hughes Coosa


Pos. Name School

DL TJ Adams Chattooga

DL TJ Cammack Rome

DL Jay Hinkle Rockmart

DL Cade Thompson Pepperell

DL Bryan Williams Pepperell

LB Tommy Atha Darlington

LB JC Burkett Armuchee

LB Montrell Millsap Rome

LB Kobe Pryor Cedartown

DB Kwalic Dublin Model

DB Zah Frazier Cedartown

DB QuenTerrius Kennemore Rome

P John Cromer Rome


ARMUCHEE: Brayden Butler, Eric Grant, Tamalachi Lovelace, Tae Allen. CEDARTOWN: Chadriq Neal, Keshun Kent, Dakota Mason, Joseph Gibbons. CHATTOOGA: Luis Medina. COOSA: Griffin Goss, Brooks Moore, Ethan Bartlett, Logan Pledger, Lavanda Millsap, Kameron White, Satoshi Kasahara, Theo Blackburn, Derricus Clark. DARLINGTON: Griffin Brewster, Ezra Barnette, Casey Gunn, Austin Rogers, Tigger Frix, Rhett McDurmon. GSD: Alberto Pantoja, Jared Evans. MODEL: Matthew Syverson, Liam Clay. PEPPERELL: Jamal Ware, Camron Miles, Josh Ross, Tyson Purdie, Tyler Liggons, Payton Rhoades. ROCKMART: Markus Smith, Dylan Bailey. ROME: Marquez Kirby, Derricus Smith, K.J. Hicks, Josh McGinnis, Bubba Glanton, Jamar Roberts. TRION: Jarrett Gill, Elder Morales, Cole Phillips, Tanner Railey, Hagen Willingham, Braxden Peace, Aidan Brock. UNITY: Terry Curry, Drew King.