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Mohawk Bowl: Amir Richardson, Jestohn Moore are best friends on opposite sides

Many often refer to the American Civil War as “brother against brother.” In today’s Mohawk Bowl, it won’t exactly be to that extent, but two particular players have a rich history from the cross-town rival schools.

Amir Richardson plays for University High and Jestohn Moore plays for Morgantown, but the two have known each other since early childhood and have been best friends since third grade.

“I remember watching our brothers, John and Tony, play on this field (Pony Lewis Field) in little league football when Amir and I would just sit there and run around in the stands and stuff,” Moore said. “That’s where our love of football came from.”

The two even talk on the phone just about every day and spend some time bonding through the “Call of Duty: Black Ops 4” on Xbox One.

“The man is not good,” Moore said, jokingly.

Jestohn Moore, left, and Amir Richardson have been friends since they were young. They are on opposite sides for the Mohawk Bowl.

The two friends were split up in eighth grade when Moore’s family decided to transfer to MHS for personal reasons. For him, though, this rivalry is a little personal.

“There were comments made about me leaving and, obviously, my quarterback (Logan Holgorsen) left me twice. I don’t let it go to my head. I just see it as a another game, personally,” Moore said. “I haven’t regretted my decision. We have a great family feel here. It’s a great program. I’m close with every coach I have. I can talk to them about everything. It was just better for us.”

Moore and Richardson don’t let the rivalry between the schools come between their friendship.

“It never really made a difference with us. We still hang out all the time. We still call each almost every single day,” Richardson said. “So, the rivalry never really affected our friendship. It never really affected us as people. At the end of the day, it’s still a game and it’s still just two schools. So we never really let it get between us.”

Moore mentioned that some people have said that the two of them have lessened the significance of the Mohawk Bowl because of their close friendship.

“Him and I are like, ‘We don’t care,’” Moore said. “Our friendship is gonna stay the same through college and high school. Even through all this Mohawk Bowl crap,  him and I have talked every single night. We even watch each other’s film together.”

Both have helped support each other in their quest to play at the next level, even though some people doubted them.

Amir Richardson and Jestohn Moore have been friends since they were young guys playing in youth leagues.

“We both have big dreams,” Moore said. “That’s one thing me and him have gone through together.”
When it comes to college ball, though, Richardson is  committed to West Virginia and Moore is  undecided . He plans to announce his decision Dec. 3, having collected eight Division I offers.

Today’s  game will be special, not just because of the friendship between Moore and Richardson or the rivalry between MHS and UHS, but because it’s  a game that will likely decide the playoff fate for both teams.

“I don’t have to say anything or do anything different. We approach it the same way than we do with the other nine (games),” UHS  coach John Kelley said. “Obviously, it means a little more and, obviously,  it has a lot on the line as far as playoffs and conference standings. I’ve never used that kind of motivation or locker room stuff. That’s silly to me. If you’re not ready to play this game, something is wrong with you.”

The winner of  Mohawk Bowl is going to the playoffs. The Hawks currently sit at No. 13 in the WVSSAC Playoff Ratings. Even with a loss, they might be able to squeak in depending on some upsets. MHS will be eliminated with a loss, though, dependent on Greenbrier East’s remaining two games.

“We’ve been in playoff mode for about three weeks now,” MHS head coach Matt Lacy said. “We told them before John Marshall that it was win or go home. They took care of business last week and we have to do the same thing this week to get into the playoffs.”

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