ARIZONA STATE FOOTBALL

Winless ASU, Arizona ready for fan-less Territorial Cup

Dec 10, 2020, 5:17 PM
Head coach Herm Edwards of the Arizona State Sun Devils shakes hands with head coach Kevin Sumlin o...
Head coach Herm Edwards of the Arizona State Sun Devils shakes hands with head coach Kevin Sumlin of the Arizona Wildcats following a 41-40 ASU victory during the college football game at Arizona Stadium on November 24, 2018 in Tucson, Arizona. (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)
(Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)

One of the longest rivalries in college football will continue on Friday when the Arizona State Sun Devils visit the Arizona Wildcats.

The rivalry began in 1899 when Arizona State was the Normal School of Arizona. Since then, the all-time series favors Arizona 49-43-1, with ASU having a current win streak of three games.

“I just think when you have a rivalry game, it’s what makes college football so special,” coach Herm Edwards said.

Because Arizona State’s team is so young, many are just learning the rivalry for the first time. So, too, is first-year offensive coordinator Zak Hill.

“I’m excited to see the rivalry,” he said. “It’s always fun to get your rivalry game. Me, being a new staff on this program, you learn about it … and you try to take it all in.”

The Arizona defense that the Sun Devils face is a “tough crew,” Hill said. “They play hard … up front, they are big.”

Offensively, Arizona has a big, dynamic back leading the run game — Gary Brightwell. The senior has 341 rushing yards on the season and one touchdown while averaging 4.8 yards per carry.

“He runs mad. He runs angry. He’s elusive,” said Arizona State co-defensive coordinator Antonio Pierce, who has seen both sides of the rivalry having played for Arizona.

With all that history of the Territorial Cup, nothing in the rivalry’s past looks quite like this year. No fans will be allowed to attend due to COVID-19 protocols.

“It’s about the fan base … sad part is the passion and the energy of the fans [and what they] bring to the stadium [will be missed], and that’s hard on everybody. The fans will be yelling at the televisions and the monitors and we can’t hear them,” Edwards said.

Adding to the weirdness this year: Both teams are winless.

The Sun Devils are 0-2 after requiring a three-week break due to COVID-19 cases on the team. They lost their season opener to USC and last week’s game against UCLA.

The Wildcats are 0-4 and lost their first game against Utah to a cancellation.

“They have not won a game and we have not won a game,” Edwards said. “All bets are off … They want to win one and we want to win one.

“This is a big one. This one has been going on a long, long time … You have bragging rights for a whole year, so it’s kind of important.”

Comments

Comment guidelines: No name-calling, personal attacks, profanity, or insults. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate comments by reporting abuse.
comments powered by Disqus

Arizona State Football

Cam Johnson #7 of the Vanderbilt Commodores runs after a reception against the Kentucky Wildcats in...
Arizona Sports

Arizona State lands Vanderbilt WR transfer Cam Johnson

Arizona State continued to add to its roster through the transfer portal, landing a commitment from Vanderbilt receiver Cam Johnson.
10 days ago
Emory Jones #5 of the Florida Gators throws a pass during the first half of a game against the Samf...
Jake Anderson

Florida transfer QB Emory Jones announces commitment to Arizona State

The Arizona State Sun Devils football team added another quarterback to its roster on Thursday in Florida transfer Emory Jones.
12 days ago
Arizona State quarterback Jayden Daniels (5) passes to running back Rachaad White (3) during the fi...
Wills Rice

A look at Arizona State football’s transfer portal exodus

Here is a list of the Arizona State players who have hit the transfer portal and where some of them have ended up.
13 days ago
Tight end Curtis Hodges #86 of the Arizona State Sun Devils runs with the football against the Colo...
Jake Anderson

ASU tight end Curtis Hodges signs with Washington Commanders as UDFA

Former Arizona State Sun Devils tight end Curtis Hodges signed as an undrafted free agent with the Washington Commanders on Saturday.
17 days ago
Offensive lineman Dohnovan West #61 of the Arizona State Sun Devils celebrates with the Territorial...
Arizona Sports

Arizona State OL Dohnovan West signs with San Francisco 49ers as UDFA

Arizona State Sun Devils interior offensive lineman Dohnovan West signed with the San Francisco 49ers as an undrafted free agent on Saturday.
17 days ago
Darien Butler #LB07 of Arizona State runs a drill during the NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium on Ma...
Arizona Sports

Arizona State LB Darien Butler signs with Las Vegas Raiders as UDFA

Arizona State Sun Devils linebacker Darien Butler signed as an undrafted free agent with the Las Vegas Raiders on Saturday.
17 days ago
Winless ASU, Arizona ready for fan-less Territorial Cup