EL PASO, Texas (KVIA) -- The Franklin Cougars are looking to make a splash this year in Class 6A and they think they have the tools to go up against powerhouses like Pebble Hills and Eastwood.
"We think we're going to be pretty good every year, but we think we have some special kids this year so we'll see if they jell and come together," Franklin head coach Daren Walker said. "The goal is the district championship and we know there are some great teams out there that put it on us last year so it's one game at a time trying to get to that district championship."
In 2022 the Cougars went 6-5 and made it to the playoffs before seeing a first round exit. But that experience has made them a better team.
"We were a young team last year going through a lot of those adversity moments," Senior quarterback Shay Smith said. "It taught us a lot. We grew up as a team. This year we're just focused on brotherhood."
In the offseason, the Cougars lost one-of-a-kind player Beau Sparks (Utah Tech) and a lot of size up front on both sides of the ball, but with half of their starters returning and an offense led by one of the best players in the city in Shay Smith (threw for 3,727 yards and 42 touchdowns in 2022 and has offers from UTEP, Houston, Texas Tech and SMU), the Cougars are a chance of matching it with some of the 6A heavyweights.
"I think we can achieve a lot this year, second round of playoffs, district championship," senior running back and defensive end Jordan Morales said. "We have the potential to do all of that, all we have to do is stay together we can't be selfish one bit we have to play together."
The Cougars kickoff their season at home on Friday, Aug. 25th against the Centennial Hawks, one of the best teams in New Mexico last year.
You can catch all of the action that night on the Borderland Blitz starting at 10.35 p.m. MT only on ABC-7.