The kids are back in school, both the little ones and the college ones, the temperature has dropped a few degrees and yet, there is something in the Lehigh Valley air... Football.
Big rivals Lafayette and Lehigh are Patriot League stalwarts and in the last ten years at least one of their names has been inscribed on the Patriot League Championship six times, which includes their shared Championships in 2004 and 2006. It also includes Lafayette's championship last year. So whether you watch at Fisher Stadium in Easton or Goodman Stadium in Bethlehem, you'll be watching two teams that are looking to be at the top, yet again.
The other big rivalry in Lehigh Valley of Moravian and Muhlenberg are also both expected to have exceptional years. Muhlenberg is one of the odds-on favorites to win the Centennial Conference having been chosen second in the preseason poll, with six first-place votes. Regardless of the outcomes, there will be some great plays to be seen on Saturdays at Scotty Wood Stadium in Allentown or Rocco Calvo Field in Bethlehem.
Not to be outdone, in western Lehigh Valley, Kutztown Football is poised for another postseason run, with returning starters and coming off of an off-season that saw one of their own, Andre Reed, become enshrined in the Football Hall of Fame.
It isn't just collegiate football, Lehigh Valley natives have long known that our High School football is something to take note of. And the rest of the state is catching on. Parkland is ranked No. 8 in the State in the Harrisburg Patriot-News Class 4A Top 10 and Bethlehem Catholic is ranked No. 7 in Class 3A. Something else to consider is the Lehigh Valley Conference expanded to include East Stroudsburg North and South, Pleasant Valley, Pocono Mountain East and West, and Stroudsburg this year. Which just means more talent has been added to the pool.
It doesn't matter where you take in a game or at what level you are watching. The gridiron action in Lehigh Valley is some of the best you'll see anywhere.