Twenty-nine years ago, Ross Carr was making an unexpected return to Down duty. Championship was approaching and he hadn't been feeling the same buzz before a strong showing with his club Clonduff, under the management of Frank Dawson, put his name back in Pete McGrath's thoughts.
Carr was approached about coming back into the fold. He was informed everything was going swimmingly and a team was ready to win an Ulster title and more.
The first session he turned up, there was barely more than a dozen fit and available to train. They ended that season with a most unlikely All-Ireland title.
The likelihood of that ever happening again is minuscule. In the modern game, teams and formations and fitness is not even a season-long development but career-long. The chances of a team performing such a smash and grab are long gone.
Under the new reality of intercounty Gaelic games, success requires capital and it's no surprise that Down had turned to one of their most favoured sons in Carr to spearhead the relaunch of 'Club Down', raising funds for the preparation of county teams and improving structures throughout the underage system.
However, having studied a number of other counties' methods, their scheduled mid-March launch had to be cancelled due to the outbreak of coronavirus.
The subsequent economic effects are set to - at best - disrupt businesses, while many will fold.
When Carr looks at it now, he believes Club Down can be a success, but the level of funding for intercounty teams - which topped €30 million in 2019 - has to fundamentally change.
"The amount of money that it actually costs to run a county is phenomenal. It is nearly bordering on extortionate," says Carr in that typically forthright manner of his.
"Not wanting to get into it, but somebody is going to have to sometime delve down into the nitty-gritty and ask if we are getting bang for our buck?
"Because that is touched on in any business. Unfortunately now, this is a sporting business and it has its debits and credits. You have to be able to financially survive. I am just not 100% sure a lot of counties are getting bang for their buck in their expenditure."
He adds: "That's for another day. Our job is to raise funds to help with the coaching and development of games within the county.
"Hopefully if we get back to some sense of normality, or what normality might be, we will go again."
Just because commerce has halted doesn't mean the promotional work of Club Down has to stop.
They currently run a newsletter every fortnight. In recent weeks, they had an enlightening contribution from Dr Aidan Cole, a son of the 1968 All-Ireland winner Mickey, who is on the frontline in the battle against Covid-19.
On a Sunday, they host a web programme called 'Down Time' where they invite prominent players and figures from Down's past for a light-hearted chat, starting at 3.30pm, a time when people might normally have been watching a ball thrown in at a game.
The first week they had a few old stagers from the 90s team and last week it was the turn of a selection of the side that made it to the All-Ireland final in 2010.
"So we are just trying to lighten the mood and keep our name out there but it is a totally different world out there for fundraising bodies because those goals, the figures we might have had six months ago, we don't know what is going to come out of this," says Carr.
One thing that may develop is the lack of demand for the usual pre-Championship training weekends away to the likes of Carton House, or even Portugal, which has become such a popular venue for aspirational county teams.
Although Carr isn't entirely convinced that when things eventually do resume, it will be the same for all.
"I think the gap will increase," he adds.
"I think there are a few counties, I am not going to say they are recession-proof, but because of their current strength, if you take football, obviously Dublin, Kerry, possibly Donegal and Tyrone, they have all had their internal struggles for the last six to eight months, so you don't know what way they are going to come out of it.
"Galway, probably, are a county that would have good resources and with current performances you could argue the point they are at the top table.
"And in hurling you have the Limericks, Tipperarys, Kilkenny, Wexford, throw into the mix Cork, Clare and so on. You can be quite sure the All-Ireland semi-finals in both codes will come out of those teams.
"After that, there is going to have to be a serious recalculation of expenditure goals."
One thing that you cannot put a price on is loyalty and ability and Carr readily acknowledges the huge part that James McCartan Jnr played in his time as Down manager from the end of 2009 to 2014.
"Down were incredibly lucky, considering where we sit in the pecking order. Since 2015 and whenever James left, James had us dining at the top table and, while we didn't win anything, we got to an All-Ireland final and were playing Division One football," he states. "That's an incredible success when you look at it logically. We are now battling at the bottom of Division Two and the top of Division Three for the last three or four years with the odd big Championship outing."
He continues: "Therefore, anybody who can attract financial help with that sort of performance record, and I mean strong financial help, is faced with difficulty.
"I would say the Canal Court are the most loyal corporate sponsor any county ever had. Constantly there despite never having a success at seniors.
"Along with that, there are loads of small businesses that keep supporting Down. I think we are just so, so lucky.
"I don't know how it will be when we - if we - go back. But I don't know if you could have a lot of the same money at your disposal, put it like that."
Like an awful lot of things, we will have to wait and see how it all plays out.