FORSAN, Texas (KMID/KPEJ) – 2021 was a good year to be a Forsan Buffalo.

Forsan went 10-2 overall, 4-1 in district play, and captured a playoff win for the first time since 2016.

Head coach Jason Phillips has already seen the effect of last year’s success on this year’s team.

“Those kind of years, I mean they can turn your program and get it going in the right direction,” said Phillips who has been in Forsan since 2005. “I think it’s done that. The energy level that our kids this year have shown, because a lot of those kids were on that team [last year]. The energy and the excitement from last year has carried over.”

Although the Buffaloes lost top end talent to graduation, Phillips expects this group to be a playoff team.

“We’ve never considered this a rebuilding year because of the talent that we have back, the talent that we had on the JV. We’re looking at this more as reloading,” said Phillips.

A strong defensive front and secondary return for one of the top 2A defenses in the state who still have a handful of upperclassmen.

However in order to get back to where they were last year, less experienced players will have to seize those open spots, and the seniors believe they can and will.

“Our defensive line is pretty good, but we lost a few offensive line. I think that we’re going to get there to where we’re going to be as good as last year,” said senior offensive and defensive lineman Weston Thomas.

“We lost a lot of seniors, but we got a lot of guys that were behind them that didn’t get to show off their talent. And so we’re still we’re still going to be really good this year,” said senior quarterback and linebacker Cade Wallis.

Realignment will force the Buffaloes to adjust to different opponents but a returning core and a deep bench give Phillips reason to believe, their new district could be theirs for the taking.

“We’re in a new district this year. A lot of teams that we’ve played, but it’s been several years. We’re excited about our new district,” said Phillips. I think it’s going to be competitive. I think it’s going to be fun.If we play the way we’re capable and stay healthy we’ll be right in the middle of it.”

Forsan begins their 2022 schedule facing Coahoma in the Howard County Bowl on August 25th in Big Spring.