Rams football closes road trip with bad loss to San Jose


Collegian | Sara Shaver

Members of the Colorado State University football team enter the field for their game against California State University, Sacramento Sept. 24. CSU lost 41-10.

Braidon Nourse, Sports Editor

The highlight reel of Colorado State University’s late night football matchup against San Jose State University was packed with long, exciting plays from the Rams. But it was the Rams’ consistent penalties and continued struggles in the red zone that sealed their 28-16 loss to the Spartans.

While the Rams’ offense looked as solid as it has been all season, the penalties racked up to the tune of 13 total penalties for 101 yards. Most of the penalties on offense were preventable ones that came before the snap, tallying six false starts and four illegal formation calls, two of which were declined.


The Rams opened the game with a touchdown on their first drive for the first time this season. On his first rushing attempt of the game, junior Avery Morrow took off down the middle, broke a tackle and sprinted the rest of the 56 yards into the end zone. Morrow rushed for over 100 yards in a game for the fourth time this season, totaling 124 for the night on 17 carries.

The Spartans eventually tied the game a full quarter later with a 2-yard pass over the top of the Rams’ defense. Late in the half, CSU senior Michael Boyle kicked a 26-yard field goal to take what would turn out to be Colorado State’s last lead of the night at 10-7.

Errors in the Rams’ secondary allowed for two of the Spartans’ three scores in the second half, and the 21-6 scoreline sealed the deal for the Rams despite their first half success.

Fort Air Raid looked as solid as ever whenever the Rams’ quarterbacks had enough time to attempt a pass. As a unit, the Rams threw for at least 40 yards on three separate plays, with the most spectacular being a 40-yard touchdown from quarterback Jackson Stratton to wide receiver Tory Horton on fourth and 24 late in the fourth quarter.

Stratton — who ended the game three of 10 with 72 yards, a touchdown and an interception — was given the reins after quarterback Clay Millen collided with his own teammate while trying to extend the play to find an open receiver. With the hit occurring with just over four minutes left in the game, Millen did not return to the field. His impact was felt, however, finishing the game with 261 yards and an interception.

Horton finished the night with nine receptions for a career-best 196 yards. Horton had plenty of big plays against the impressive Spartans defense, including multiple receptions for over 30 yards each.

Next week, the Rams will take on the University of Wyoming for the annual Border War rivalry game. The rivalry will be the first such matchup for head coach Jay Norvell, who looks to get his team back on track on home turf following two tough road losses.

Reach Braidon Nourse at sports@collegian.com or on Twitter @BraidonNourse.