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Colorado State celebrates 14th annual Grill the Buffs

CSU students Taylor Millson and Linzhi Douglass welcome students to the annual Grill the Buffs barbecue outside the Lory Student Center Aug. 28, 2019. (Anna von Pechmann | Collegian)

In anticipation of the Rocky Mountain Showdown, the Associated Students of Colorado State University hosted Grill the Buffs on Friday on the Lory Student Center West Lawn.

This year was the 14th annual Grill the Buffs, a pep rally to hype up students for the game between Colorado State University and the University of Colorado Boulder. This tradition is another one of many that haven’t been celebrated since the outbreak of COVID-19 in 2020.


The events coordinator, Meron Siyoum, ASCSU director of traditions and programs, expressed her excitement for being able to bring this event back to life.

“The maintenance of tradition is really important,” Siyoum said. “Being here and seeing everyone come out for the burgers and for this tradition … truly means a lot.”

The event started off with a bang as the Marching Band and the Spirit Squads performed together, followed by a string of speeches, which were kicked off by the ASCSU President Nick DeSalvo, who made commentary on CU’s head coach.

“Deion Sanders is building a brand, but coach (Jay) Norvell is building good men — they are not the same,” DeSalvo said.

The next to make a speech was Senior Associate Athletic Director and Football Chief of Staff Tim Cassidy, who spoke in Norvell’s stead.

“Coach Norvell’s leadership is so fitting for CSU,” Cassidy said. “(CU) might be Gucci, but we are blue-collar workers.”

Head coach Emily Kohan of the women’s volleyball team made her speech, marking the victory of the team in Boulder the night before.

“We reversed-swept them, which means we won the last three sets,” Kohan said.

Finally, CSU President Amy Parsons joined the scene, expressing her excitement for the game.


“We’re going to show them that we are the best university in the state one of the best universities in the country,” Parsons said. “We’re going to do that through our hearts, through our comradery, through our spirit we’re going to show them what we’ve got. Let’s gear up for next year.”

Funding for the event was provided by a mixture of the Coca-Cola grant ASCSU funding and some outside sponsors to help with setup.

“We planned with the LSC, we planned with Flexx Productions (and) they provided the grills and the tents,” Siyoum said.

Unfortunately, not everyone was able to get burgers, as they quickly ran out; however, there was still plenty of fun to go around, with people playing games and listening to music. Kindasoso, a contemporary R&B band from Fort Collins, joined the event at noon, staying until the end of the event at 2:30 p.m.

What would a CSU pep rally be without the appearance of the beloved mascot himself, CAM the Ram? CAM showed up on the scene to take pictures and get the crowd ready for the game on Saturday.

This event is a time-honored tradition for those who have seen more than their fair share of Rocky Mountain Showdowns. To be brought back after four long years and to become such a success is a testament to the rivalry and the students of CSU’s pride in their team.

“This rivalry is really important, and it’s really fun, and the fact that I get to be a part of bringing this back and hopefully keeping it on campus and not having it stop ever again just means the world to me,” Siyoum said.

Reach Ayla Sanchez at or on Twitter @CSUCollegian.

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About the Contributor
Ayla “AJ” Sanchez is an editor for the news desk at The Collegian starting the fall semester of 2023. She hopes to bring accurate and positive news to The Collegian and get coverage on the things that matter to Colorado State University and Fort Collins as a whole. Sanchez is new to CSU and The Collegian, having no experience in news writing before joining. A transfer from the Community College of Denver, Sanchez hopes to learn more about university life and the traditions surrounding CSU. Her goal is to thrive in this new environment and make a new start for herself. Sanchez is a double major in journalism and political science with a minor in history. Her goal is to become a representative of Colorado to bring change within the state and the country as a whole. She hopes to gain experience while at CSU that will help her reach her goal. Outside of work and school, Sanchez loves to hike, visit various bodies of water — City Park’s lake being her favorite — and walk to 7-Eleven for a nice cold Slurpee. She's excited for the winter since building snowmen and snowball fights are her favorite activities. Sanchez is excited for the kick-off of the new school year and to be one of this year's news editors.

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