CSU football continues to struggle, falls to Washington State 38-7

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Collegian | Reuel Indurkar

Colorado State University football players lock arms during the CSU alma mater song at the end of the game against Middle Tennessee State University at Canvas Stadium Sept. 10.

Kaden Porter, Staff Reporter

In the third game of the 2022 season, Colorado State University football took on undefeated Washington State University in Pullman, Washington, Sept. 17. The Rams struggled on both sides of the ball and fell to the Cougars 38-7.

Protection issues that have plagued the Rams this season continued against Washington State; Millen was sacked seven times throughout the game. Until Millen is able to be consistently protected, it will be difficult for the air raid offense to find momentum.

The first half was full of mistakes and missed opportunities by Colorado State.

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Washington State dominated to open the game, scoring two touchdowns in the first six minutes as the Rams’ offensive struggles allowed the Cougars great field position.

On their third drive of the afternoon, CSU’s offense clicked enough to drive down the field and attempt a field goal, but senior kicker Michael Boyle missed a 44-yard try. Boyle was the replacement for former kicker Cayden Camper, who left the program last week.

After the Cougars scored again to increase their lead to 21-0, it appeared as if the Rams would be in position to attempt another field goal, but a muffed snap took CSU out of range and the team punted instead. 

Trailing 28-0, Colorado State got one more opportunity to score before halftime after forcing a fumble, but quarterback Clay Millen was sacked again on fourth down. 

Colorado State remains scoreless in the first half this season.

Unlike the Rams’ comeback attempt last week against Middle Tennessee State University, CSU’s offense largely continued to struggle through the second half.

The Rams’ sole score of the afternoon came early in the fourth quarter on a 14-yard reception by true freshman receiver Justus Ross-Simmons, his first collegiate career touchdown.

CSU showed improvement defensively in the second half, allowing just 10 points after allowing 28 in the first half.

Defensive back Jack Howell set up a possible scoring opportunity with an interception deep in WSU territory midway through the fourth quarter, but the Rams’ offense was shut down in the red zone and turned it over on downs.

Protection issues that have plagued the Rams this season continued against Washington State; Millen was sacked seven times throughout the game. Until Millen is able to be consistently protected, it will be difficult for the air raid offense to find momentum.

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The Rams, now 0-3, will host 2-0 California State University, Sacramento at 2 p.m. Sept. 24 for an Ag Day orange out at Canvas Stadium.

Reach Kaden Porter at sports@collegian.com or on Twitter @kqporter5.