Arizona State knows it has a major challenge in its first Pac-12 game as Arizona heads to Tempe, but ASU coach Bobby Hurley is happy with the way his team has practiced.
"I think we have a lot of respect for Arizona and what their program has been and what they have done this year," Hurley said.
"We respect that challenge in front of us and the guys are showing me in practice they need to be sharp, we need to execute, we need to play tough, and all the things we have done. The guys are very attentive to what we are trying to get done here in practice."
Hurley is aware that emotions will be high on Sunday, but also believes that there is enough room for both teams to be successful at a high level.
"I know the emotions from being in games like this and the meaning of it in the state and two programs," he said.
"We feel like we are program on the rise and there is plenty of room for multiple programs to compete at a really high level and that is exciting for college basketball and the state of Arizona."
Arizona poses a unique challenge for the Sun Devils due in large part to the Wildcats' overall size.
"They are bigger and they rebound as well as anybody in the country," Hurley said. "They play the right way. They play hard on defense and make you earn everything, so certainly it is going to be a very difficult game."
It is unknown if ASU will shoot well, but Hurley is confident that the Sun Devils will play hard.
"We have had games where we have shot it well and our percentage has been good, but we have had some other games where we have struggled," he said.
"You don’t always shoot well, but you can control your effort and how you pursue the basketball. We have players that want to go after the ball."