Three point underdog Washington State brought its defensive swagger to Colorado and shut down 3 critical Colorado drives to allow WSU to beat Colorado 31-27 for its first conference win. The Cougars 3-1 are now off to their best start in the Coach Paul Wulff era.
After a quick WSU early score, Colorado came right back in the first quarter to put up a quick 7, followed by a 3 point feild goal to take a 10-7 lead. Both teams put another 7 point on the board allowing Colorado to close the half with the lead.
WSU’s offense can out flat in the second half and Colorado’s adjustments seemed to shut down the Cougars high flying offense along with some very questionable PAC12 zebra calls. In the meantime, Colorado’s QB Tyler Hansen kicked their offense into gear. Buff running back Rodney Stewart ripped off some big chunks of real estate to close the game with 132 yards and his 15th game of over 100 yards rushing.
While the Cougars did not seem to have an answer for Stewart, Wazzu, WSU came right back for a 10-play, 80-yard drive with fullback Jared Byers hauling in a 11-yard touchdown pass with 6:27 remaining in the third quarter to cut the Colorado lead back to three at 20-17. The Cougars led by Sr LB Alex Hoffman-Ellis cranked up the D and refused to let Colorado spoil their PAC-12 opener by shutting down the next couple of Colorado drives.
Finally late in the came Colorado seemed to take control of the game on an 52 yard run by Stewart putting the Buff’s up 27-17 with roughly 6 min left in the game. The Cougars were not done and senior QB Marshall Lobestall was not going down without a fight. With helpful face mask call and a key run by Winston, WSU marched down the fidld. Lobestall then hit WR Isiah Barton with a 19 yrd pass with 2:35 left in the game.
Down 27-24, the Cougar Defense once again stopped Colorado and the Cougs took posession of the ball. The Cougs could not move it and got hit with another questionable pass interferance call. The Cougs then turned the ball back over to Colorado. The Buff’s went 3 and out after another strong defensive stand. With 1:51 to go, the Cougs went down field with Lobestall hiting Wilson on a beautiful pass as he ran into the end zone to put the Cougs up 31-27. Colorado got the ball back with 1:15 to go. The Coug D caused a fumble regained the ball to close out the game with Lobestall taking a knee.