The seed was planted for this nearly two years ago.
It was Nov. 19, 2010, at Lamonica Stadium, where Clovis High defeated Edison 38-18 for its first Central Section football playoff victory in four years.
The Cougars, 5-26 in the previous three seasons, would reach the Division I semifinals with an 8-5 team that had established a defensive foundation that remains today.
But Clovis didn't leave that night without taking some shots from a Tigers sophomore flashing future brilliance at quarterback -- Khari McGee.
Tonight, McGee returns to the same site, as does Cougars three-year starting safety Jason Black in a season-opening matchup of not only two of the section's premier players, but two of the top teams as well.
Fifth-ranked Edison and No. 7 Clovis are each coming off 10-2 seasons.
Bee All-Star McGee, whose college offers include Arizona, Oregon State and Utah, has two-year totals of 4,546 passing yards, 5,351 yards of total offense and a combined 57 touchdowns passing and rushing.
"I feel the same way everyone else does -- he is unbelievable and a great player," Cougars coach Rich Hammond says.
Then there's his own Bee All-Star in Black, a 6-foot, 200-pounder with a 3.9 grade-point average.
"I haven't had a player with that combination of academics and ability," says Hammond, who is in his fourth season at Clovis and ninth overall as a head coach.
"I've never had a player get a (major college) scholarship out of high school, either, but that's going to happen for Jason. He's a really intelligent player who plays extremely fast. He has a real knack of getting in the right place, and he can hit."
Black, who aspires to become an engineer, is being pursued by Pac-12 and Mountain West conference schools, Hammond says. But the coach expects him to land at Air Force or Cal Poly because of their academic reputations.
Clovis lost Bee defensive All-Stars in Jeff Caton, Dakota Gordon, Nate Palomino and Ryan Davies to graduation. But Hammond is hardly any less confident on that side of the ball this season.
"Obviously, you can't replace those guys," he says, "but I think we're pretty close to where we were last year in talent and ability."
Impact players remain for Clovis on all three levels of defense with lineman Nick Nevills, three-year starting linebacker Jordan Harper and Black, C.J. Broussard and Adrian Salas in the secondary.
They'll have to bring their "A" game while opposing McGee and an electric supporting cast featuring receivers Preston Scott, Deondre Howard and Tyrone Smith, as well as running backs Kevin Nutt and Blake Wright.
The reporter can be reached at (559) 441-6366, email@example.com or @beepreps on Twitter.