The year was 1988.
Ronald Reagan was president, Bobby McFerrin ruled the music charts with his single "Don't Worry Be Happy" and "Rain Man" was the nation's top grossing movie.
It also was the year that Dos Palos High last changed its head football coach, with former star quarterback Mike Sparks taking over for Tom Scheidt – who had replaced Sparks' father, Bill, 12 years earlier.
A year later, on the other end of the Central Valley, John Yavasile took over at Redwood for 20-year coach Roger Kelly.
Now, those two tradition-rich Central Section football programs have new coaches for the first time in more than two decades.
Frank Lemos (Dos Palos) and Shaun Ball (Redwood) are two of the 23 changes at the top across the section, one of the largest turnovers in recent memory.
It is an upheaval that has seen veteran coaches Pat Plummer (Hoover) and Tim Simons (Clovis North) step down, and a switch of schools for Jim O'Brien (Edison to Hoover), Justin Fowler (Mt. Whitney to Hanford West), Marty Martin (Kerman to Mt. Whitney) and Bonner Cunnings (Fresno Christian to Lemoore).
There are also first-timers such as Joe Schey (Fresno), John Lourenco (Roosevelt), Cory Hall (Clovis North), Paul Preheim (Golden West), Stevan Chamalbide (Tulare Western), Alex Pittz (Chowchilla), Chris Melgoza (Kerman), David Muro (Parlier), Jamie Chavez (Avenal) and Beto Mejia (Mendota).
"I'm finding out rather quick that it's a tremendous commitment," said Lemos, who spent the past 13 years as Sparks' defensive coordinator and 22 years overall as a coach in Dos Palos.
Lemos is the 11th head coach in 88 seasons of Dos Palos football, which has won 47 league titles and 15 section crowns to date.
By contrast, perennial power Clovis West had five coaches over the previous five seasons and Clovis three since Simons ended a 24-year tenure there with a section title in 1999.
"It's an honor and an extreme privilege," Lemos said of following Sparks, who went 209-68-2 with the Broncos. "I don't feel any pressure, but I do feel a great sense of responsibility to the kids and the community and to coach Sparks to continue all he has done, and all his father and coach Scheidt did. I am going to do the very best I can for these kids."
After 11 seasons in Lemoore, where he went 62-55 with six playoff appearances, one West Yosemite League title and one section Division III championship, Ball decided to toss his name in the hat of applicants looking to follow in the footsteps of Yavasile and Kelly. Yavasile won 209 games with 18 league titles and one section crown in 22 years in charge at Redwood.
"There was some apprehension because those are big shoes to fill," Ball said. "Redwood football is a big deal. I played for coach Kelly at COS and played against and coached against coach Yavasile. I knew what I was getting into, but it made sense for me and my family."
Right off the bat, Ball, a Visalia resident and Golden West graduate, saw his daily commute drop from 26 minutes one way down to 6.
He'll also have the opportunity to coach his sons Tyler, 10, and Bryson, 7, as the Ball family – which includes wife Tiffini – live in the Redwood district.
And then there are the family ties. Tiffini, as well as Ball's parents, Gary and Sherran, and two uncles and two aunts are all Redwood graduates.
"I don't see myself going anywhere else," Ball said. "For my family and everything, this is about as good as it's going to get. It's a great fit. I know I'll be really happy here. This is a place I can spend the rest of my career as a teacher and a coach, if they'll have me."