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N’Keal Harry won’t play in ASU’s Las Vegas Bowl

Arizona State wide receiver N'Keal Harry runs for a touchdown against Utah in the second half during an NCAA college football game against Utah, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018, in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

N’Keal Harry will not play in Arizona State’s Las Vegas Bowl matchup against No. 21 Fresno State, head coach Herm Edwards initially told ESPN’s Edward Aschoff.

The junior wide receiver announced his intentions to forego his senior season and declare for the 2019 NFL Draft last Monday. He said then that he’d not yet made a decision about whether he would play in ASU’s bowl game.

Edwards told Doug & Wolf on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station earlier that day that he had already discussed Harry’s bowl game eligibility with the receiver.

“I always side on the side of the player,” Edwards said. “I’m going to do what’s best for the football player every time.”

Edwards and ASU released a statement Monday regarding Harry’s official decision to not play:

After thorough consideration and consultation regarding N’Keal Harry’s future prospects with our coaching staff, administrative staff and N’Keal himself, we have collectively determined it is in his best interest to forego the Mitsubishi Motors Las Vegas Bowl game and focus on his transition. We wish him the best and know that he is a Sun Devil for Life.

Harry, who has signed with an agent, is considered a first- or second-round prospect in the upcoming draft. ESPN has him ranked as the second-best receiver, behind Marquise Brown of Oklahoma.

Harry made 73 catches for 1,088 yards and nine receiving touchdowns in 2018.

He finishes his Arizona State career third in school history with 213 receptions and 2,889 receiving yards. Harry is also fifth in ASU history with 22 touchdown receptions.

A local product out of Chandler High School, Harry earned a comparison to NFL receiver Dez Bryant from Edwards.

“Big strong physical guy, can make a contested catch,” Edwards said on Nov. 26. “There’s a lot of boxes that he checks off. Probably biggest box that he checks off — and I’ve discussed it with the pro guys — he loves to compete. It’s no longer a hobby, it’s your career. You have to go take someone’s job.

“This becomes your life. You have to invest in it. He’s done that. He’s done that as a college player.”

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