Melissa shocked and surprised many North Texas football fans in 2012 when it took down a Goliath of an opponent in Celina in the season opener. The game that was held on the biggest of high school stages — the $60 million Allen Eagle Stadium.

Now the Cardinals get the chance to do it again.

With two scrimmages and a months worth of practices under their belts, the Cardinals will kick off their season on Thursday night with a rematch of last years season opener.

In preparation, Melissa scrimmaged Aubrey on Aug. 22 and were able to get their offense going. The Cards also had several key defensive stops, but Head Coach Seth Stinton said that even when the team looks good there are ways to improve.

"The scrimmage against Aubrey showed us where we need to get better," Stinton said. "They exposed us a little, and we have to try to improve in those areas."

Stinton said that he wants his team to fight hard in this opener but even more importantly, "we want to be healthy after this week."

With 18,000 seats to choose from, Cardinal coaches are hoping that the Big Red Machine will pack their side of the field on Thursday with fans cheeing the team on to a season-opening win.