LEROY —  Josh Jackson and the Pine River Bucks are confident they're on the verge of something special this football season.

A 6-foot-3, 206-pound junior, Jackson has been helping out the Bucks who enter this week at 4-3. They have already passed their win total from a year ago.

For the Bucks, Jackson has been at right offensive tackle and defensive end. He starts on offense.

The transition from junior varsity has been a successful one for Jackson.

The best line play, he said, was against Benzie Central in week two.

Jackson has been a lineman since the sixth grade.

"I fill space," he smiled, while adding that he wants to improve on "pass blocking. We really need to work on the passing game and coming off the ball."

Pine River started off 2-0 and then lost to two tough opponents in Beal City and Wyoming Godwin Heights.

"We played well in those games," Jackson indicated, adding that "we should have won" the close game against Godwin Heights, a 26-21 loss.

The Bucks got their third and fourth wins against Lake City and Evart.

"We want to win our (remaining) games and go to the playoffs," Jackson said, adding that it could happen "if we play hard. They will be decent teams."

The Bucks have been disciplined when it comes to limiting mental errors, Jackson indicated.

"We don't have many penalties," he said. "To get a win, we just have to stay together and not argue."

Pine River will be 5-3 next week when they play at McBain. The Bucks get a forfeit win this week against Marion.