The SportsTalk Shop: HS Football Poll – Week 2

First of all, a big “thank-you” to all the people who sent me positive feedback following our unprecedented THREE HOURS of high school football primer talk (which you can catch through RCN On-Demand or at  We had some wonderful insights on the local teams and players in the RCN viewing area, along with predictions, identified athletes-to-watch, “must see” match-ups, and, of course, our RCN pre-season football poll.  We hope you check it out if you missed it!

Speaking of polls….

It seems bizarre that it’s already time for our “Week Two” high school football polls for teams and only now have we celebrated Labor Day. (I joke when people mention this holiday as I, along with nearly every coach, player, administrator and media member rarely can have a Labor Day Monday in which you’re not doing something football related, or else you find yourself massively behind in the preparation department for this week’s chores).

It’s the same thing for our high school football poll panelists, who were hard at work over the last 24 hours reviewing last weekend’s gridiron activities, comparing notes and sizing up the competition around the Lehigh Valley, in order to submit their picks for our bi-weekly poll.

With that said, here’s a look at our first “in-season” ranking of the teams in the RCN/Lehigh Valley footprint after two solid weeks of high school gridiron action:

BIG SCHOOL FB Poll (10 pollsters)
1) Parkland (5-1st place votes)
2) Freedom (4-1st place votes)
3) Liberty
4) Emmaus (1)
5) Easton
Other schools receiving more than one vote: Southern Lehigh, Whitehall

SMALL SCHOOLS FB Poll (9 pollsters)
1) Saucon Valley (5 – 1st place votes)
2) Becahi (4 – 1st place votes)
3) Central Catholic
4) Notre Dame
5) Northwestern
Other schools receiving more than one vote: Pen Argyl, Salisbury

Unlike polls that consist of a couple representatives within the same organization, our poll is much more varied with input from many different people over a wider scope.  Our voting panel consists of local media members from different outlets, along with local coaches and athletic directors from across the entire district.  The voters are not identified (unless they appear on our “SportsTalk” TV show and podcast and chose to reveal themselves) so they can give their honest impressions without any worry of outside pressures or “bulletin board” material, and we rotate different pollsters from different schools each year, including guests from our biggest to our smallest schools.

Despite this fall’s change in the PIAA classification, our poll remains with the standard, tried-and-true format that we have utilized for many seasons.  We will take the 400-male enrollment number as the cutoff for schools within the District XI/RCN footprint.  All schools above that number qualify as “big schools” in our poll. These schools consist of Parkland, Liberty, Allen, Easton, Emmaus, Liberty, Dieruff, Freedom, Stroudsburg, Pleasant Valley, Northampton, Nazareth, E. Stroudsburg-South, Whitehall, Southern Lehigh and Bangor.

“Small schools” (below 400-male enrollment) consist of Saucon Valley, Central Catholic, Bethlehem Catholic, Northwestern, Wilson, Palisades, Palmerton, Salisbury, Notre Dame, Pen Argyl, Northern Lehigh and Catasauqua.  Each pollster will identify their top five teams in each group—the top school gets five points, the second team gets four points and so on, with an average score determining the order of teams in the poll.

For the RCN viewers watching us in the Washington, DC region, we are once again featuring your high school football teams with highlights and news on the different programs on our Thursday show.

Feel free to send us your opinions on our poll to and we might read your emails live on the air on upcoming programs.  You can comment directions on this week’s “RCN SportsTalk” program this Thursday and our podcast of the show available on our website.

Also, don’t forget to check back to the “SportsTalk Shop” for more on high school football and fall sports teams in the RCN viewing area over the coming weeks for more interviews, video highlights and insights!

Chris Michael About Chris Michael

Chris handles play-by-play for RCN sports events, including baseball, football & basketball games and produces/hosts the station’s 60-minute live call-in show. Among Chris’s other responsibilities include reporting on local news & sports stories, conducting “Take 5” interviews with community and political leaders, producing commercials, voiceovers and promos; and generating blog entries and videos on the internet. Click here to listen to the weekly Sports Talk podcast.

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