Former Derry player Paul McFlynn is acutely aware that a lot of water has flowed under the bridge since the Oak Leaf County last had reason to celebrate a meaningful landmark.
That was in 1998 when the Ulster title was captured but since then Derry, while boasting an enviable vibrant internal Club Championship competition, have remained among the also-rans on the inter-county stage.
Yet even though 2020 to date has offered no substantial evidence that this malaise can be eradicated, there is a growing feeling within the county that the shackles of mediocrity may be loosened.
Several former players and officials have stepped up to the mark recently in urging an Oak Leaf revival and among the most strident voices in this regard is that of McFlynn.
No one, indeed, has a stronger reason for recalling that 1998 provincial triumph. Not only did McFlynn, a lecturer at the University of Ulster, Coleraine, earn his provincial medal but he also walked off with the man of the match award following the dramatic final win over Donegal.
Since then, Donegal have gone on to win their second All-Ireland crown and five Ulster titles while Derry have remained in the shadows.
Right now, McFlynn, still passionately committed to his native county, is hopeful that this coming autumn will help rekindle memories of more vibrant days.
"We can't live in the past," said the Loup clubman. "For too long now, Derry have been in the shadows. But now we have a chance to do something, I feel.
"For a start, we have two outstanding league games to play before we meet Armagh in the quarter-finals of the Ulster Championship and with the right preparation and maybe a little rub of the green we could get something from these encounters."
Derry will face Longford at home and Offaly away in their Division Three league assignments in mid-October and should they manage to beat Longford in particular then they will leapfrog the midland side in the table to ease into second place behind promotion certainties Cork.
This would fuel confidence for a trip to struggling Offaly and should further comfort be gained in Tullamore, then a hot reception could await Kieran McGeeney's men in Celtic Park for a scheduled Ulster quarter-final.
"Obviously we have to see how things pan out in relation to the coronavirus but the hope is that we might be able to make a pitch for promotion in the first instance and then maybe have a good rattle at Armagh," insisted McFlynn. "We have seen many seasons that were filled with hope come to nothing but at the same time we must be positive. There are good players in this Derry team, Rory Gallagher is very dedicated to giving the side a lift and the supporters are anxious to get back on board again."
And McFlynn is adamant in his belief that promotion would be "a very good thing for Derry".
"Every team will be chomping at the bit to try and improve their status when action resumes," asserted McFlynn.
"I have no doubt that promotion would be a very good thing for Derry. It would greatly encourage the manager, players and fans and it would also mean that the team would participate in the All-Ireland Championship proper next year."