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Rivalry Reflections Pt. 2

In part two of our look at how former Wildcats feel about the rivalry, we get feedback from players who played under Dick Tomey, Larry Smith and Mike Stoops.

Former Wildcat safety Brandon Sanders (1992-95):

“I didn’t understand it until I got out there. I was so upset about the year I redshirted. I didn’t care about the scoreboard, I just wanted to hurt somebody.

“I almost broke Eric Gulliford’s back. Coach Lynn gave me a thumbs up. I am going to exit the field and Eric Gulliford comes up to me and says ‘You almost killed me.’

“What’s funny is year’s later when I’m in New York playing for the Giants Felipe Sparks comes up to me and says ‘I remember watching that game and you almost broke Eric Gulliford’s back. I thought his career was over.’

“That was one game where I did not care about the score, I just wanted to hit someone and let them know I was there.”

Former Wildcat linebacker LaMont Hunley:

“I remember a game where ASU came down here with a chance to go to the Rose Bowl. It was 1984 I think. The fans came down here with Roses. The whole city of Phoenix was down here I think. They did have more fans than we had because they knew they were going to the Rose Bowl for some time.

“Brian Holland had like an 80 yard touchdown and Max Zendejas kicked a bunch of field goals to win the game. You could just see their expressions on their faces as the ASU fans got as low as they could ever be.

“As a player you keep those memories with you forever. Hopefully you can pass on to the players now and I only hope they create some of those memories for themselves.”

Former UA offensive lineman Eben Britton:

“We hate those guys. There are no ifs, ands or buts about it.

“It’s bitter, man. As a young guy, you come in and you don’t really understand that hatred.

“It’s a lot of fun to play those guys. It gets nasty. Especially in the trenches. That’s what it’s all about.

“You name it, it’s getting said. People are spitting on each other. It’s nasty. That’s how this rivalry is. That makes it fun. It’s awesome for that.”

Note: both the Sanders and Hunley interviews were conducted a few year ago, while the Britton interview was conducted by Anthony Gimino this lst year. For more of Anthony's work check out WSR's media partner TucsonCitizen.com.

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