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Football Polls & A Major Announcement

November 13, 2023 By Chris Michael Leave a Comment

Before we talk about our next-to-last week of high school football polls on the Astound TV Network, a special programming note for Astound video customers. 

For this Thursday SportsTalk, ATVN lead football analyst Mike Joseph will be our special guest to recap all of last weekend’s high school football playoff games, and provide a preview of this weekend’s District 11 6A and 3A Championships.

Additionally, Mike will provide insights into this weekend’s Lafayette vs. Lehigh game. 

AND…

…we will have a MAJOR announcement concerning our local sports coverage and the future of live broadcasting sports and other specialty programming on ATVN.

Tune in this Thursday LIVE at 7:00 p.m. for all the details! We will also have more insight on this big news and details on how you can watch this Thursday’s show ONLINE… details coming your way right here on our website. 

Check back to “The Shop” next week for the final week of our polls (along with a check on how we did by comparison with our preseason polls) as the playoffs continue and we start to lose our local schools as the games roll on.


Our playoff coverage continues this weekend as we will be bringing you the second round of high school football playoff coverage

On Friday, we’ll have live coverage of the District XI 6A final and a rematch of one of our best regular season games of 2023 as Nazareth looks to avenge a 7-point loss to undefeated Parkland (these two teams have faced off in the district playoffs the last two years as well, with each team winning once).  Also, we will have the annual college battle between Lafayette and Lehigh on Saturday. 

(We were also hoping to bring you coverage of Whitehall, Northwestern and Bethlehem Catholic’s playoff games this Saturday, but because of our contractual obligations with Lafayette and the decision to move all the local games to Friday precludes us from being able to broadcast those schools’ games.)


Now here’s a look at our polls along with our criteria that we use.

This year, we are once again going to break down the two polls into EPC and Colonial League schools, within the Astound TV broadcast area.  With the Colonial teams cross-scheduling and playing teams from the Schuylkill League and the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference playing different “cross-over” teams, our poll will be an interesting barometer for teams in the Lehigh Valley since many local teams will not have the same opponents throughout their schedules.

Below we have high school polls for both leagues in the ATVN viewing area, along with the listing of all of the teams that are included in our respective categories.

EPC TOP 5
  1. Parkland
  2. Nazareth  
  3. Emmaus
  4. Bethlehem Catholic
  5. Whitehall 

Eligible Teams (in no particular order):

Northampton, Bethlehem Catholic, Easton, Freedom, Liberty, Dieruff, Allen, Allentown Central Catholic, Parkland, Whitehall, Emmaus, and Nazareth.

COLONIAL TOP 4
  1. Northwestern
  2. Southern Lehigh
  3. Notre Dame
  4. Bangor

Other schools receiving votes: Catasauqua

Eligible Teams (in no particular order):

Bangor, Pen Argyl, Notre Dame – Green Pond, Wilson, Catasauqua, Salisbury, Saucon Valley, Northwestern, Northern Lehigh and Southern Lehigh.

Be sure to check back to the “upcoming events” section on our website and check it frequently for any changes and for our ongoing broadcast schedule information throughout the postseason.

The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Astound Broadband or any other agency, organization, employer or company.

 

HS Football Polls ‘23 – Week 11

November 6, 2023 By Chris Michael Leave a Comment

Before we look at this week’s high school football polls, a moment to brag just a little bit about the insights that the ATVN pollsters give us each week (again, no, I don’t voice so this isn’t a self-congratulatory mention).

Last week when Northwestern beat Southern Lehigh – quite soundly – many of the other local media had to admit a “shake-up” in their polls or talk about a “major upset” in their Lehigh Valley rankings.

However, the people who rank our poll each week have had Northwestern (not Notre Dame, Southern Lehigh or anybody else) as their number one team in our rankings each week since our pre-season poll way back in mid-August, before the season started.

Not only did our pollsters accurately predict the Tigers and Spartans correctly as our small school “one and two” but they still have the same number three and four teams.

And…for our big schools, four of the five teams they selected back in August are still listed. 

Those people who we are blessed to have participate in our polls (and we do thank them for their time and efforts) should get the recognition they deserve for correctly selecting the top teams in each poll all through the season.

Can they remain as close to perfect as they could possibly be with two weeks left to spare?

Check back next week for the final two weeks of predictions as the playoffs continue and we start to lose our local schools as the games roll on.


Our playoff coverage continues this weekend as we will be bringing you the second round of high school football playoff coverage

On Friday, we’ll have live coverage of the District XI 6A semi-final matchup between Emmaus and Parkland (a rematch of these two teams from two weeks aga in the regular season finale).  Also, we will have the 6A semifinal between Northampton and Nazareth.

Keep checking back to the “SportsTalk Shop” over the next few weeks for highlights of our recent games as seen on the Astound TV Network (video customers can see these games for free through Video-On-Demand for up to two months from the initial airdates!)


Now here’s a look at our polls along with our criteria that we use.

This year, we are once again going to break down the two polls into EPC and Colonial League schools, within the Astound TV broadcast area.  With the Colonial teams cross-scheduling and playing teams from the Schuylkill League and the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference playing different “cross-over” teams, our poll will be an interesting barometer for teams in the Lehigh Valley since many local teams will not have the same opponents throughout their schedules.

Below we have high school polls for both leagues in the ATVN viewing area, along with the listing of all of the teams that are included in our respective categories.

EPC TOP 5
  1. Parkland
  2. Nazareth
  3. Northampton
  4. Central Catholic
  5. Emmaus

Eligible Teams (in no particular order):

Northampton, Bethlehem Catholic, Easton, Freedom, Liberty, Dieruff, Allen, Allentown Central Catholic, Parkland, Whitehall, Emmaus, and Nazareth.

COLONIAL TOP 4
  1. Northwestern
  2. Southern Lehigh
  3. Notre Dame
  4. Bangor

Eligible Teams (in no particular order):

Bangor, Pen Argyl, Notre Dame – Green Pond, Wilson, Catasauqua, Salisbury, Saucon Valley, Northwestern, Northern Lehigh and Southern Lehigh.

Be sure to check back to the “upcoming events” section on our website and check it frequently for any changes and for our ongoing broadcast schedule information throughout the postseason.

 

The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Astound Broadband or any other agency, organization, employer or company.

HS Football Polls ‘23 – Week 10

October 30, 2023 By Chris Michael Leave a Comment

Before we look at this week’s high school football polls, a quick word about a VERY busy (and, historic) week of local sports coverage on the Astound TV Network this week!

As we embark on the high school football postseason, we also will be bringing you district championship coverage in volleyball and soccer.  For the first time on our network, we will be broadcasting the District XI boys AND girls soccer 4A championship games!

Also, we will broadcast for the first time, a District XI girls volleyball championship doubleheader, with back to back coverage of the 3A and 4A title games on Thursday evening (airtimes and the site location will be revealed after this Tuesday’s semifinal games).

Our playoff coverage continues this weekend as we will be bringing you the opening round of high school football playoff coverage, PLUS Lafayette’s first home game in six weeks, on ATVN.  On Friday, we’ll have live coverage of the 6A quarterfinal matchup between Emmaus and Freedom (it was a 6-point win by the Patriots when these two teams played during the regular season).  Also, we will have the 4A semifinal between Bangor and Allentown Central Catholic, which is a rematch from last year’s playoff semi-finals.

Keep checking back to the ATVN website for more information on possible additional sports broadcasts coming up.

Additionally, keep checking back to the “SportsTalk Shop” over the next few weeks for highlights of our recent games as seen on the Astound TV Network (video customers can see these games for free through Video-On-Demand for up to two months from the initial airdates!)


Now here’s a look at our polls along with our criteria that we use.

This year, we are once again going to break down the two polls into EPC and Colonial League schools, within the Astound TV broadcast area.  With the Colonial teams cross-scheduling and playing teams from the Schuylkill League and the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference playing different “cross-over” teams, our poll will be an interesting barometer for teams in the Lehigh Valley since many local teams will not have the same opponents throughout their schedules.

Below we have high school polls for both leagues in the ATVN viewing area, along with the listing of all of the teams that are included in our respective categories.

EPC TOP 5
  1. Parkland
  2. Nazareth  
  3. Central Catholic
  4. Northampton
  5. Freedom

Eligible Teams (in no particular order):

Northampton, Bethlehem Catholic, Easton, Freedom, Liberty, Dieruff, Allen, Allentown Central Catholic, Parkland, Whitehall, Emmaus, and Nazareth.

COLONIAL TOP 4
  1. Northwestern
  2. Southern Lehigh
  3. Notre Dame
  4. Bangor

Eligible Teams (in no particular order):

Bangor, Pen Argyl, Notre Dame – Green Pond, Wilson, Catasauqua, Salisbury, Saucon Valley, Northwestern, Northern Lehigh and Southern Lehigh.

Be sure to check back to the “upcoming events” section here on our website and check it frequently for any changes and for our ongoing broadcast schedule information throughout the postseason.

 

The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Astound Broadband or any other agency, organization, employer or company.

HS Football Polls ‘23 – Week 9

October 23, 2023 By Chris Michael Leave a Comment

Before we look at this week’s high school football polls, here’s a look at recent games seen on ATVN.

Astound Sports: Northwestern Lehigh vs. Northern Lehigh (9/23)

Astound Sports: Parkland vs. Freedom (9/23)

Astound Sports: Nazareth vs. Freedom (9/23)

https://youtu.be/4S5n05jkkP0

Keep checking back to the “SportsTalk Shop” in upcoming weeks for additional highlights of our recent games as seen on the Astound TV Network (video customers can see these games again for free through Video-On-Demand for up to two months from the initial airdates!)


Now here’s a look at our polls along with our criteria that we use.

This year, we are once again going to break down the two polls into EPC and Colonial League schools, within the Astound TV broadcast area.  With the Colonial teams cross-scheduling and playing teams from the Schuylkill League and the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference playing different “cross-over” teams, our poll will be an interesting barometer for teams in the Lehigh Valley since many local teams will not have the same opponents throughout their schedules.

Below we have high school polls for both leagues in the ATVN viewing area, along with the listing of all of the teams that are included in our respective categories.

EPC TOP 5
  1. Parkland
  2. Nazareth  
  3. Northampton
  4. Central Catholic
  5. Freedom

Eligible Teams (in no particular order):

Northampton, Bethlehem Catholic, Easton, Freedom, Liberty, Dieruff, Allen, Allentown Central Catholic, Parkland, Whitehall, Emmaus, and Nazareth.

COLONIAL TOP 4
  1. Northwestern
  2. Southern Lehigh
  3. Notre Dame
  4. Bangor

Eligible Teams (in no particular order):

Bangor, Pen Argyl, Notre Dame – Green Pond, Wilson, Catasauqua, Salisbury, Saucon Valley, Northwestern, Northern Lehigh and Southern Lehigh.

Be sure to check back to the “upcoming events” section here on our website and check it frequently for any changes and for our ongoing broadcast schedule information throughout the upcoming postseason.

 

The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Astound Broadband or any other agency, organization, employer or company.

New ATVN Broadcasters: Winter 2023

October 19, 2023 By Chris Michael Leave a Comment

The last couple of years we have been blessed with the opportunity to add some significant talent to the Astound TV Network’s lineup of great on-air talent to both our sports coverage and regular programming staff.

I’m proud to say that our on-air family will continue to grow as we prepare for the upcoming “winter” campaign!

As we get ready for the new season, we wanted to reveal some of our new personalities and roles that you will be seeing on ATVN over the next several months.

First of all, we’d like to welcome in new talents to our annual Dream Come True telethon coming up in a few weeks (be on the lookout to check out this year’s on-line auction items for some great specials/gifts and ways you can help our a great local charity).

Artie Freeman, the host of ATVN’s hottest new show “Cultural Bridges” and also does a great job hosting the “Movie Vault” features and as guest host on “Community Spotlight” on our network, will be joining our telethon on-air team as a co-host.  Artie will be providing great interviews with DCT families to share their stories and let you know how much your donations mean to children who are seriously, chronically and terminally ill.

Lilly Moss Hercik will join our on-air staff officially for this December’s telethon.  She made her debut with the Astound TV Network last winter by performing a live song, but this year the singer/pianist will not only be providing several musical performances on the program but will also join Scott Barr at “Auction Central,” working with Scott to feature the many great auction items we have available.

Aziz Atiyeh joins the ATVN Sports Staff as an announcer for our local soccer and volleyball coverage.  Aziz excelled in three scholastic sports (football, soccer and volleyball) at Whitehall High School and went on to play the latter two sports successfully at Kings College in Wilkes-Barre. Atiyeh brings his experiences with all three sports to the Astound sports family as a commentator.

Dawn CIpolla is one of the most decorated women coaches in the Lehigh Valley over the last ten years, and now she will be commenting on high school sports for ATVN.   Cipolla, who won four District 11 championships and four East Penn Conference titles in her 7 years as head coach at Parkland High School. She also earned several coach of the year and team of the year awards during her tenure with the Trojans.

 

Also, we are pleased to announce that all of last year’s “newbies” will be returning for this winter sports season:  Cameron Nunez, Adrianna Dias, Jarrett Carnes, and Brittany Thomas will all be back.

 

Please welcome – and welcome back – our winter on-air team!

 

The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Astound Broadband or any other agency, organization, employer or company.

 

The Elephant In the Room by Melvin Thomas, Jr.

October 17, 2023 By Chris Michael Leave a Comment

Over the course of the past eight weeks in high school football there have been lots of ups and downs. Some teams have not measured up to pre-season expectations. Other teams have exceeded them. Some teams have been unable to jump start a championship run.

To me it seems that the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference has more parity in the south division than in recent history. But I feel that there is an elephant in the room. It is noticeable that there is one team who continues to shine.

One team that displays an amazing amount of sportsmanship and grit.

In my assessment, modern day high school football players have begun to sensationalize themselves. The mannerisms I see displayed are young men acting as if they are professional or “the main attraction” and it is not the case. This is a team sport which is being galvanized on high school teams. I have noted that some of these young players are displaying behaviors that would not have been tolerated in years past including throwing helmets, cussing on the sideline, arguing with coaches, and even receiving taunting penalties. 

When agreeing to write this blog, I had not envisioned how the season would unfold. I find myself sitting at my desk pondering my observations about a specific team and how they have shown an enormous amount of sportsmanship and discipline since the start of this season. But once I saw it, it became glaring to me. 

The elephant in the room is the Parkland Trojans.

I have watched the integrity of this team during one sided games. They have respect for the opposing players and fans and do not necessarily let off the gas pedal but instead encourage their opponents to keep grinding. I have noticed their sideline to be absolutely organized with every player locked into what was happening on the field and not just spectating.

I don’t want any of my readers to mistake the point that I am making. I am a football guy and I believe that the game should be played with a degree of reckless abandon.

For the benefit of today’s blog, I just want to give the Parkland coaches and the players their flowers for playing the game on a high level. Thank you for having enough respect for the game to emulate sportsmanship and build character on and off the field. Your efforts are noted.

Folks … whenever you can, please take note of this team because they have been the elephant in the room this entire season.

Football is Life! This is the game where young men are taught through adversity to become better versions of themselves.

 

The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Astound Broadband or any other agency, organization, employer or company.

HS Football Polls ‘23 – Week 8

October 16, 2023 By Chris Michael Leave a Comment

There continues to be very little movement in our high school polls this year–which is just fine to the top teams in each of the Astound TV Network’s EPC and Colonial Leagues polls.

Parkland, Nazareth, Northampton, Northwestern, Southern Lehigh and Notre Dame all won again – and won big – last weekend and continued playing well heading into the last two weeks of the regular season. Central Catholic had to come from behind but still won by 16 and Emmaus won their game by 15.

Once more, most of the above mentioned teams will likely be favored to win their remaining games before the playoffs.  (Keep an eye on the cross-league game between Blue Mountain and Bangor coming up, which could go a long way in shaping the District XI 4A playoff picture.)

That being said, there’s still some great individual efforts and a number of players that are nearing milestones to keep an eye on for the next few weeks.

Before we look at this week’s high school football polls, here’s a look at recent games seen on ATVN.

Astound Sports: Whitehall vs. Bethlehem Catholic (9/23)

Astound Sports: Wilson vs. Pen Argyl (8/23)

Astound Sports: Nazareth vs. Emmaus (9/23)


Now here’s a look at our polls along with our criteria that we use.

This year, we are once again going to break down the two polls into EPC and Colonial League schools, within the Astound TV broadcast area.  With the Colonial teams cross-scheduling and playing teams from the Schuylkill League and the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference playing different “cross-over” teams, our poll will be an interesting barometer for teams in the Lehigh Valley since many local teams will not have the same opponents throughout their schedules.

Below we have high school polls for both leagues in the ATVN viewing area, along with the listing of all of the teams that are included in our respective categories.

EPC TOP 5
  1. Parkland
  2. Nazareth  
  3. Northampton
  4. Central Catholic
  5. Emmaus

Eligible Teams (in no particular order):

Northampton, Bethlehem Catholic, Easton, Freedom, Liberty, Dieruff, Allen, Allentown Central Catholic, Parkland, Whitehall, Emmaus, and Nazareth.

COLONIAL TOP 4
  1. Northwestern
  2. Southern Lehigh
  3. Notre Dame
  4. Bangor

Eligible Teams (in no particular order):

Bangor, Pen Argyl, Notre Dame – Green Pond, Wilson, Catasauqua, Salisbury, Saucon Valley, Northwestern, Northern Lehigh and Southern Lehigh.

Be sure to check back to the “upcoming events” section here on our website and check it frequently for any changes and for our ongoing broadcast schedule information throughout the regular season and postseason.

 

The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Astound Broadband or any other agency, organization, employer or company.

HS Football Polls ‘23 – Week 7

October 9, 2023 By Chris Michael Leave a Comment

The next few weeks will be a very important series of games on the local high school football scene as a number of teams in our polls will be playing each other, and the teams just BEHIND those in our poll are jockeying for the remaining positions for the upcoming playoff season.

Among those big ball games will be our #1 team in our EPC poll (Parkland) playing our #4 squad (Bethlehem Catholic) live on Friday night.  Two teams tied for our #5 spot (Whitehall/Central Catholic) squaring off against each other live on Saturday night on the Astound TV Network.

Before we look at this week’s high school football polls, here’s a look at recent games seen on ATVN.

Astound Sports: Central Catholic vs. Northampton (8/23)

Astound Sports: Catasauqua vs. Northern Lehigh (9/23)

Astound Sports: Dieruff vs. Liberty (8/23)


Now here’s a look at our polls along with our criteria that we use.

I’m proud to say (and no, I don’t vote myself) our football polls have proven to be among the most accurate, year after year, among all media organizations that attempt to rank teams in our coverage area each fall.  (Check out our archived polls from previous years if you’d like proof).

We never announce nor release the names of our non-media voters to get their honest opinions on the local football landscape while avoiding any thoughts of retribution or potential “bulletin board” material.  Our “media voters” usually reveal themselves when we have the pleasure of having them on our weekly SportsTalk program, seen on Thursday nights on the Astound TV Network and available to watch at any time for free through ATVN on Demand.

This year, we are once again going to break down the two polls into EPC and Colonial League schools, within the Astound TV broadcast area.  With the Colonial teams cross-scheduling and playing teams from the Schuylkill League and the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference playing different “cross-over” teams, our poll will be an interesting barometer for teams in the Lehigh Valley since many local teams will not have the same opponents throughout their schedules.

Below we have high school polls for both leagues in the ATVN viewing area, along with the listing of all of the teams that are included in our respective categories.

EPC TOP 5
  1. Parkland
  2. Nazareth  
  3. Northampton
  4. Bethlehem Catholic
  5. (Tie) Whitehall/Central Catholic

Eligible Teams (in no particular order):

Northampton, Bethlehem Catholic, Easton, Freedom, Liberty, Dieruff, Allen, Allentown Central Catholic, Parkland, Whitehall, Emmaus, and Nazareth.

COLONIAL TOP 4
  1. Northwestern
  2. Southern Lehigh
  3. Bangor
  4. Notre Dame

Other teams receiving votes: Pen Argyl

Eligible Teams (in no particular order):

Bangor, Pen Argyl, Notre Dame – Green Pond, Wilson, Catasauqua, Salisbury, Saucon Valley, Northwestern, Northern Lehigh and Southern Lehigh.

Be sure to check back to the “upcoming events” section here on our website and check it frequently for any changes and for our ongoing broadcast schedule information throughout the postseason.

 

The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Astound Broadband or any other agency, organization, employer or company.

“It’s Really Just a Game” by Melvin Thomas Jr.

October 4, 2023 By Chris Michael Leave a Comment

As I plan my weekend and, of course, my Friday adventures to attend a high school football game, I find myself wondering why there are so many games being played on Thursday nights?

At first, I considered that maybe, like in the southern states, Pennsylvania has decided to play on Thursday in addition to Friday nights to offer fans a full complement of football that they can enjoy over the course of a long weekend, including Saturday early afternoon games. 

Well, then I discovered that many Saturday games are scheduled for 7pm instead of early afternoons like in past years. Initially, it seemed odd to me that this is happening. Was the PIAA really looking to grow the game? But to my surprise, it is a reaction to what has been a problem in amateur sports for several years. 

There is a shortage of officials to officiate games.

I would like to take this time to speak to the parents and fans of this great sport of football and address our ability to help make changes and to treat officials with the dignity and respect they deserve. My passion for the sport as a former player, coach and a parent of a formal player has contributed to personal “not-so-great” moments – yelling at an official about what I perceived to be a blown or missed call. On those occasions, I have felt embarrassed after the fact. After calming down, I was able to recognize that the officials can sometimes make mistakes and make bad calls. 

After all, they are human and it’s really just a game.

In order for this dynamic to change and inspire more people to become officials without the threat of being belittled or subjected to verbal and potentially physical violence, I want to encourage fans and parents to contemplate their input, and how little it actually matters.

Your child/athlete has more control of the final outcome than any blown call an official can make. These officials are not compensated enough to tolerate feeling belittled or to put up with threats of violence when they make a call. 

To the parents who are upset about not being able to attend their athletes’ Thursday games, please be mindful that these games are a direct result of the actions of the fan base which has contributed to the officials shortage. The vast

majority of officials have full-time jobs and chose to officiate because of their love for the game and are often committed to do their best to demonstrate excellence and proficiency when officiating. 

To the fan or parent in the stands that berates and belittles the officials, the PIAA is hiring and looking for officials. Please apply if you can do a better job.

Let’s get back to the basics and just enjoy the game.

Folks, it is really just a game. Please be respectful of the men and women who dedicate their time to officiate high school football. Football is Life!

 

EDITOR’S NOTE: Be on the lookout for ways to help support local referees and officials during the PIAA initiative, “Officials Appreciation Week” across the state of Pennsylvania, from October 9th through October 15th!

 

The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Astound Broadband or any other agency, organization, employer or company.

HS Football Polls ‘23 – Week 6

October 2, 2023 By Chris Michael Leave a Comment

A few people asked me last week why we were not going to broadcast the Parkland vs. Whitehall football game last Friday.

There were actually several reasons, but the shortest explanation–and the biggest reason–came down to one word…research.

I’ve seen Parkland a few times and talked to people very familiar with the Trojans program.   Same for Whitehall.  And the overwhelming opinion AND feedback was that the Zephyrs simply do not match up with Parkland well this year.

It’s not a knock against Whitehall.  Plus, to be honest, we probably will do that game next year.  But this year, the timing wasn’t quite right and all the signs pointed to a Parkland big victory.

Thus, we went with Nazareth vs. Central and Becahi vs. Emmaus.

The results?

Nazareth/Central was 7-7 with under three minutes left in the game and Emmaus had a 10-0 lead but with Becahi driving deep into Hornet’s territory midway through the fourth quarter.

Meanwhile, Parkland mercy-ruled Whitehall 36-7.

My point in explaining this is that we do take people’s opinions very seriously.  We also put a lot of time and effort and use several different methods into selecting, what we believe, will be the best possible games for as many of our viewers as possible.  This weekend, I feel very confident in saying that we made the right decisions.

And fear not, Parkland and Whitehall fans…we’ll have Whitehall coming up twice over the next two weeks and we’ll have Parkland coming up at least two more times in the regular season (and probably see both of these teams quite often come postseason time as well!)

As always, your feedback is welcome – feel free to email me at chris.michael@astound.com with any questions or suggestions for upcoming sports programming decisions!


 

We had a very spirited conversation with new ATVN announcer/blogger Melvin Thomas Jr on last Thursday’s “SportsTalk” show, with one segment focusing on issues facing football programs at inner-city schools and another segment discussing the negative effects of the NCAA’s new transfer/portal process and how it will make things tougher on high school prospects going forward.

If you missed that show or watch to hear Melvin’s wise observations again, Astound video customers can watch the show for free through ATVN on demand (look under “Sports” then “SportsTalk” on our VOD tab.)


 

Now here’s a look at our polls along with our criteria that we use.

I’m proud to say (and no, I don’t vote myself) our football polls have proven to be among the most accurate, year after year, among all media organizations that attempt to rank teams in our coverage area each fall.  (Check out our archived polls from previous years if you’d like proof).

This year, we are once again going to break down the two polls into EPC and Colonial League schools, within the Astound TV broadcast area.  With the Colonial teams cross-scheduling and playing teams from the Schuylkill League and the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference playing different “cross-over” teams, our poll will be an interesting barometer for teams in the Lehigh Valley since many local teams will not have the same opponents throughout their schedules.

EPC TOP 5
  1. Parkland
  2. Nazareth  
  3. Bethlehem Catholic
  4. Central Catholic
  5. Whitehall

Other teams receiving a vote: Northampton

Eligible Teams (in no particular order):

Northampton, Bethlehem Catholic, Easton, Freedom, Liberty, Dieruff, Allen, Allentown Central Catholic, Parkland, Whitehall, Emmaus, and Nazareth.

 

COLONIAL TOP 4
  1. Northwestern
  2. Southern Lehigh
  3. Bangor
  4. (Tie) Notre Dame/Catasauqua

Other teams receiving votes: Pen Argyl

Eligible Teams (in no particular order):

Bangor, Pen Argyl, Notre Dame – Green Pond, Wilson, Catasauqua, Salisbury, Saucon Valley, Northwestern, Northern Lehigh and Southern Lehigh.

Be sure to check back to the “upcoming events” section on our website and check it frequently for any changes and for our ongoing broadcast schedule information throughout the postseason.

 

The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Astound Broadband or any other agency, organization, employer or company.

  • Watch Astound TV Network:
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  • UPCOMING EVENTS

    🏀HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL
    2/21 at 6pm:
    Tamaqua vs. Northwestern LIVE
    2/21 at 7:30pm:
    Lehighton vs. Central Catholic LIVE
    2/23 at 5pm:
    Executive Charter vs. Catasauqua LIVE
    2/23 at 6:30pm:
    Liberty vs. Nazareth LIVE
    2/23 at 8pm:
    Dieruff vs. Easton LIVE

    🏀LAFAYETTE BASKETBALL
    2/24 at 6pm:
    Mens – Lehigh vs. Lafayette

    🥇HIGH SCHOOL WRESTLING
    2/24 at 4:30pm:
    District XI Boys 3A Individual Wrestling Championships

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