Saturday night’s showdown in Seattle will be headlined by two former teammates.
“It’s a matchup I’ve been looking forward to all off season,” said Sun Devils receiver N’Keal Harry. “I’m excited to see how it goes.”
Harry became friends with Washington cornerback Byron Murphy their freshman year at Marcos de Niza High School in Tempe.
“Sophomore year he lived with me. I lived right by our school, Marcos de Niza High School,” said Murphy, who had four pass break ups last week vs Utah. “Me and N’Keal we always compete against each other. It’s always a thing between me and him. Once he wins, I gotta go again. I’m going to win this time. “
Following a coaching change at Marcos, the two friends separated. Harry went to Chandler. Murphy went Saguaro. The two initially planned to play together again at ASU but Murphy chose to leave Arizona.
'“I honestly thought he would have committed here,” said Harry. “But when he committed to Washington I completely understood where he was coming from.”
“Some people thought we were a packaged deal,” said Murphy. “We went our separate ways, doing what’s best for each other.”
Murphy didn’t play in the first meeting between their two schools, still recovering from foot surgery. He returned to the Valley for the Fiesta Bowl, vs Penn State, and wowed the crowd with an early interception. Harry leads the Sun Devils with 21 catches and four touchdowns.
So who will come out on top on Saturday night? Murphy says he’s got a pretty good idea of how to stop his friend.
“But he got some tips, so we’re going to see,” said Murphy.
We will see on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. in Seattle.