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The Philadelphia Public League (PPL) is the interscholastic sports league for the public high schools of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The league traces its origin to 1901, with the formation of the Philadelphia Interscholastic League, a conference encompassing all the city's high schools, public and private. Prior to this, the public and private schools in the area had been competing among themselves for several years in a number of sports, including football and basketball. Basketball and track and field were the first recognized sports in 1901, but football, although not formally on the schedule, engaged all the same teams, and newspapers usually recognized the school with the best record as the informal interscholastic champion. In 1902, baseball and crew were added to the schedule.


Initially, the Public League comprised the four public schools that withdrew from the Interscholastic League—Central, Central Manual, Northeast, and Southern—as well as West Philadelphia High. Germantown Academy, a private school, joined a few years later. Overbrook, Frankford, Simon Gratz, Olney, and Roxborough would join the league over the next couple of decades.

Football, basketball, rifle, outdoor track, crew, and baseball were offered in the first school year of competition, 1911-12. Crew was especially popular in Philadelphia, as the University of Pennsylvania sponsored interscholastic meets for the sport and encouraged its adoption by the city high schools. Soccer and cross country were added just before World War I, and the 1920s saw the introduction of swimming, gymnastics, golf, and tennis. The league experimented with indoor track (1915–21), ice hockey (1922), and bowling (1930–32), but these sports drew insufficient interest to sustain them. Crew was dropped by the league in 1919, which was a great blow to Central High, which for decades had one of the strongest rowing programs in the country.


The football team members in the Philadelphia Interscholastic League included St Jerome's, St Matts and others in the first few years, and beginning in 1909 Southern. that were members—secular, Quaker, and Catholic the public school members withdrew from the league to form the Philadelphia High School League.

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Tue, 09 Feb 2016 18:26:15 -0800

3. Minersville (11) 22-0 — Idle. Next game: Wednesday vs. Class 3A honorable mention Blue Mountain in Schuylkill League semifinals. 4. Imhotep Charter (12) 19-3 — Idle. Next game: Philadelphia Public League playoffs. 5. Bishop McCort (6) 20-1 — Idle.


Tue, 09 Feb 2016 04:00:00 -0800

Next game: Philadelphia Public League playoffs. 5. Bishop McCort (6) 20-1 — Idle. Next game: Wednesday at Westmont Hilltop. 6. Holy Redeemer (2) 18-3 — Won vs. Lake-Lehman 92-34. Next game: Wednesday vs. Elmer L. Meyers. 7. Holy Cross (2) 20-1 ...

CBS Local

CBS Local
Thu, 04 Feb 2016 11:52:30 -0800

Valentin finished as an all-state and all-city player, who was part of a history-making team that became the first Philadelphia Public League squad to ever win a state title. The Panthers also have an argument as the greatest Philadelphia Public League ...

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Tue, 22 Dec 2015 06:46:43 -0800

Philadelphia Public League boys coaches met at Fels High School on November 13, 2015 to determine the league's all star players. The following players emerged as the A Division first teamers. Adin Hernandez-Carrera (Northeast) was named MVP of the ...

The San Diego Union-Tribune

The San Diego Union-Tribune
Wed, 03 Feb 2016 06:59:43 -0800

Notable: He helped the Panthers to three straight Philadelphia Public League championships and blocked on line for an offense that produced 702 points. Donnell Greene, OL, 6-6, 340, Coffeyville (Kansas) CC. Notable: He comes to SDSU as a junior out of ...


Tue, 02 Feb 2016 19:11:15 -0800

The 5-foot-10, 170-pound Watson played high school basketball for his father, Maurice Watson Sr., at Boys Latin, where he scored 2,356 points, the second-highest total in Philadelphia Public League history. He spent two years at Boston University ...


Tue, 19 Jan 2016 14:21:06 -0800

En route to their state championship, the Panthers capped a 6-0 league record to win the Philadelphia Public League crown with a 64-0 blowout win over West Philadelphia in their last league matchup. The following week No. 13 Imhotep (11-0) opened up ...

CBS Local

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Thu, 14 Jan 2016 12:15:00 -0800

In four years at Imhotep Charter, all Crosby has done is compile a 53-6 record, one PIAA Class AA state runner-up trophy and this season a PIAA Class AAA state championship, the first state football title for a Philadelphia Public League school. There ...

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