Growing up, everything was a competition for the Goblirsch brothers.
“There was a lot of smack talk and heated conversations when we played video games,” Derrick said. “There was controller throwing. That’s just the way it was. We didn’t want to lose at anything.”
“We were close enough in age we’d play football, baseball and basketball in the front yard,” Clinton said. “It was always competitive. It was fun, too. We both wanted to be successful.”
Clinton (Ceres High) and Derrick (Central Valley) will match coaching wits when their respective prep football teams clash this fall.
Clinton, 35, earned a promotion after second-year leader Matt Chachere stepped down in November.
Derrick, 33, was promoted after Scott Edwards retired at the end of the 2019 season to spend more time with his family.
“We didn’t envision this happening,” Derrick said. “Both of us have worked really hard to get to where we’re at. It’s going to be a lot of fun, not only this year, but for years to come.”
“We’re both excited for the opportunity,” Clinton said. “It’s something we wanted to do. But you can’t expect it. Both of us have high expectations for ourselves and teams.”
Clinton started coaching at Ceres High School in 2006.
He was varsity offensive coordinator for six seasons (2006-09, 2018-19).
He was varsity defensive backs coach for one season (2014).
He was junior-varsity head coach for five seasons (2010-11, 2015-17).
Derrick served as head coach of Central Valley’s junior-varsity football team for five seasons (2012-15, 2019).
He worked with quarterbacks and running backs at the varsity level in 2019. Goblirsch was defensive coordinator from 2016-18.
Clinton faces a tall task in trying to rebuild Ceres High’s football program.
The Bulldogs failed to make the playoffs and compile a winning record for the 15th straight year last fall.
Central Valley amassed a 32-30 overall record, won one league title and participated in the playoffs twice during Edwards’ six-year tenure.
The Hawks have an all-time record of 12-2 versus the Bulldogs in varsity football.
“I think he’ll do a lot of great things for that program,” Derrick said.
“He’s going to put the time and work in to be successful,” Clinton stated.
“Our coaching styles are a little different,” Derrick added. “He’s fierier. That’s a good way to describe it. I’m a little more laid back.”
Clinton and Derrick graduated from Ceres High in 2002 and 2005, respectively.
Derrick earned eight varsity letters, including four in basketball, two in baseball and two in football.
Clinton earned six varsity letters: two in basketball, two in baseball and two in football.
Clinton and Derrick played one season of basketball together.
“That was one of the most memorable sports experiences we had together,” Clinton said. “We were already close. That brought us even closer. I always tried to lead by example.”
“Growing up, he was older,” Derrick stated. “He was always better. That drove me to get better. He helped build me into the athlete I was.”
“It (working hard) was instilled in us from our parents,” Clinton added.
Derrick (2004, 2005) and Clinton (2002) were both named Ceres High Male Athlete of the Year.
Father Rick (1976) also won the same ward.
Mother Kimli (class of 1977) was a standout athlete with the Bulldogs as well.
Clinton teaches social studies at Ceres High.
Derrick teaches math at Central Valley.
“You have a lot more vested in a community that you grew up in,” Derrick said.
The Bulldogs and Hawks will face off during the third week of the 2020 season.
“It will be a first for the both of us,” Clinton said. “Our parents are excited. They’ll sit with our wives and families. They’ll root for both of us.”
“Our parents have supported us through everything,” Derrick said. “They’ll try to stay as neutral as they can. My mom works there (at Ceres High) so every Friday she wears Bulldog gear.”
Derrick and Clinton have been coaching varsity baseball at Central Valley and Ceres High for seven and five years, respectively.
“Being an athlete growing up, you know at some point you’re not going to be able to play anymore,” Derrick said. “That (coaching) is our way of staying involved in sports. To get to the level we’re at coaching two varsity sports, I don’t think either of us saw that coming.”