Friends turned foes this weekend ahead of NDSU vs. UND

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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) -- This weekend could be a contentious one for football fans, but, it could also be contentious for two best friends who find themselves lining up on opposing sidelines.

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Running backs Ty Brooks and James Johannesson used to terrorize defenses at Fargo South High School.

“It was great to have him [at South]. We were sort of in high school the 1-2 punch. He’s a great competitor,” Johannesson said.

Saturday when North Dakota visits North Dakota State for the first time since 2015, the old teammates will be on much less friendlier terms.

After the two finished high school they each went their separate ways with Brooks signing to NDSU and Johannesson to Minnesota.

"I was happy for him then and I’m happy for him now, the way he went and the way I went,” Brooks said.

Johannesson re-opened his recruitment and eventually transferred to UND.

"I told him to come to NDSU. I wanted him to be here," Brooks said. "Obviously he’s my best friend. I wanted him to come here but he chose to go up to UND, happy for him there, and now we get to play each other.”

The two still exchange text messages before they take the field each week.

With both playing on offense they won't see each other on the field Saturday, which means communication between the lines will be limited.

Actually, they won't talk at all this week leading up to the game.

"I told him don’t text me until after we get done playing. But yeah it’ll be fun to get back on the same field as him,” Brooks said.

"This week we might not be talking, but we’ll be friends on Sunday,” Johannesson said.

UND and NDSU will meet for the 121st time Saturday. You can watch exclusive coverage of the game on the KVLY KFYR Bison Football Network beginning with the Farmers Union Insurance Bison Football Pregame Show starting at 1 p.m.

Kickoff will follow at 2:30 p.m.