If the North Callaway football team was feeling a little brash coming off its Class 3 quarterfinal appearance in 2011, the Thunderbirds received a humbling reality check earlier this summer.
North Callaway competed in the Central Methodist University team camp back in June at Fayette, opening play with a pair of emphatic victories. Just as quickly, though, the Thunderbirds discovered what it was like on the down side after dealing with deflating losses.
"The first thing we did was pop off a bunch of touchdowns and beat a couple of teams pretty handily," North Callaway head coach Mike Emmons said Tuesday morning. "Then it really reared its ugly head and that Friday night we just got pounded by some teams.
"Hopefully that taught us a lesson. We definitely use that as a learning tool."
Emmons will find out soon enough when his Thunderbirds - who return eight starters on both offense and defense from last year's 8-5 squad - open the 2012 season at home tonight against South Callaway. Kickoff is at 7.