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2016 PFN Preseason Rankings – Class 6A & 5A

Written by: on Wednesday, August 24th, 2016

 

With the PIAA moving from four classifications to six, the Pennsylvania Football News has adjusted its rankings to reflect the recent changes. PFN will rank the Top 8 in all six classifications with five teams named honorable mention in each class. In the past, 40 teams would be named in the rankings and with a move to six classifications, we thought 60 was too many.  Therefore , 48 teams will be named each week.  We will start with the preseason rankings for Class 6A and Class 5A

Class 6A

Pittsburgh Central Catholic is the Class AAAA defending champ and even know they lost a lot of great players and Division 1 blue-chippers, the Vikings are stacked again for 2016. They will be especially good on defense with the return of David Adams and Kurt Hinish. St. Joe’s Prep, reeling after being upset in the Philly Catholic League championship last season, wants to get back to Hershey again. The Hawks definitely have the bodies, highlighted by one of the nation’s top running back prospects in D’Andre Swift. LaSalle was hit hard by graduation, but will have enough to be relevant again.  However, can they get past St. Joe’s again to make a run at a state title? Neshaminy is a slight favorite to win District 1 over North Penn and Perkiomen Valley. The Redskins are very balanced on both sides of the ball. Finally, a quarterback can take you a long way in the postseason and junior signal caller and Notre Dame recruit Phil Jurkovec is one of the best in the country.

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Class 5A

If you look at the preseason rankings in 5A, you don’t see a lot of teams that were highly ranked at the end of 2015. The reason is simple. Most of the teams were playing with the big boys in Class AAAA last season. Now, these teams have their own division and it will be very interesting. Archbishop Wood is the favorite and why not? They have been one of the best teams in the state the last several years no matter the school size. Upper St. Clair is going to make one more run for veteran coach Jim Render. Yes, the Panthers were a .500 team last year, but USC is a slight favorite over Woodland Hills to win the WPIAL. The Wolverines were hit hard by graduation, but they never have trouble finding a new batch of high impact players.  Also, watch out for a resurgent Harrisburg team. Its roster is full of Division 1 prospects and this could be a special year for them.  Manheim Central who is one of the former Class AAA teams to move to 5A should be relevant at this level and challenge the Cougars for the District 3 title.

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