Trib HSSN preseason state football rankings

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Thursday, September 10, 2020 | 8:47 AM


The 2020 high school football season kicks off Friday around Pennsylvania with words such as finally, normalcy, excitement and tradition being used to describe games that were up in the air as recently as two weeks ago.

Add another word when it comes to state rankings — chaos.

First the Philadelphia Public League, then the Philly Catholic League decided to not participate in fall sports under the current pandemic climate.

Word is though some District 12 schools are having second thoughts and traditional football powers St. Joseph’s Prep and LaSalle College may look to play an independent schedule.

District 3 Harrisburg is another powerhouse program that is not participating in football this fall.

So before getting a look at the preseason Trib HSSN state rankings, here is reminder of teams that hoisted gold last fall when a facemask was a penalty instead of a safety precaution.

The 2019 PIAA champions were St. Joseph’s Prep in 6A, Archbishop Wood in 5A, Thomas Jefferson in 4A, Wyoming Area in 3A, Southern Columbia in 2A and Farrell in A.

Here is the preseason PIAA Top Five in each of the six classifications. Their final ranking from last year is in parenthesis after their record, followed by their district.

Class 6A

1. Central Catholic (12-2) (3) (D-7): The Vikings open Friday as they host Canon-McMillan.

2. Central Dauphin (12-3) (2) (D-3): The Rams do not play this weekend.

3. North Penn (8-4) (NR) (D-1): The Knights open Friday as they host Pennsbury.

4. North Allegheny (10-2) (NR) (D-7): The Tigers open Friday as they host Penn Hills on HSSN.

5. State College (11-2) (NR) (D-6): The Little Lions do not play this weekend.

Class 5A

1. Pine-Richland (10-2) (NR) (D-7): The Rams open Friday as they host Fox Chapel.

2. Warwick (10-3) (NR) (D-3): The Warriors open Friday as they visit Penn Manor.

3. Gateway (12-3) (3) (D-7): The Gators open Friday as they host Franklin Regional on HSSN.

4. Cathedral Prep (11-3) (5) (D-10): The Ramblers open Friday when they host Butler on HSSN.

5. Peters Township (12-2) (5) (D-7): The Indians do not play this weekend.

Class 4A

1. Thomas Jefferson (16-0) (1) (D-7): The defending state champion Jaguars open Friday at West Mifflin on HSSN.

2. Jersey Shore (11-4) (NR) (D-4): The Bulldogs open Friday when they host Shamokin.

3. Berwick (9-3) (NR) (D-2): The Bulldogs will open Friday when they visit Lake Lehman.

4. Dallas (15-1) (2) (D-2): The Mountaineers open Friday when they host Tunkhannock.

5. Berks Catholic (8-5) (NR) (D-3): The Saints open Friday when they host Chichester.

Class 3A

1. Central Valley (13-2) (1) (D-7): The Warriors open Friday when they visit Hopewell on HSSN.

2. Wyomissing (12-1) (5) (D-3): The Spartans open Friday when they visit Boyertown.

3. Wyoming Area (14-1) (2) (D-2): The defending state champion Warriors open Friday when they host Hanover.

4. Hickory (7-4) (NR) (D-10): The Hornets open Friday when they host Grove City.

5. Tamaqua (12-3) (3) (D-11): The Blue Raiders open Friday when they visit Shenandoah Valley.

Class 2A

1. Southern Columbia (16-0) (1) (D-4): The defending PIAA Class 2A champion Tigers open Friday when they visit Loyalsock Township.

2. Farrell (14-2) (1) (D-10): The defending PIAA Class A champion Steelers open Saturday when they visit Sharpsville.

3. Wilmington (12-1) (3) (D-10): The Greyhounds open Saturday when they host Greenville.

4. Richland (13-1) (4) (D-6): The Rams open Saturday when they visit Class A No. 1 Bishop Guilfoyle.

5. Beaver Falls (8-3) (NR) (D-7): The Tigers open Friday when they visit Riverside.

Class A

1.Clairton (11-3) (3) (D-7): The Bears open Friday when they visit Jeannette on HSSN.

2. Bishop Guilfoyle (12-3) (2) (D-6): The Marauders open Saturday when they host Class 2A No. 4 Richland.

3. Old Forge (8-2) (NR) (D-2): The Blue Devils open Friday when they host Carbondale.

4. Steelton-Highspire (8-3) (NR) (D-3): The Steamrollers open Friday when they visit Newport.

5. West Middlesex (7-4) (NR) (D-10): The Big Red open Friday when they host Reynolds.

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