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Rams football looks to regroup, refine during early bye week

Collegian | River Kinnaird
Despite the loss, the Colorado State University Rams show some good work as they fall short to the Washington State University Cougars at Canvas Stadium Sept. 2. CSU lost 24-50.

Disappointment was a theme in the locker room after Colorado State football lost to Washington State Saturday. The mood rolled over to Monday as the Rams looked to their bye week. 

It’s an uncharacteristic two-week bye for the Rams, something that head coach Jay Norvell said he can’t recall ever having so early in the season in the span of his coaching career. 


“I definitely think it’s something different but a blessing at this time, as we were able to just come together as a team in these two weeks,” tight end Dallin Holker said. “And like Jack (Howell) was saying, get ready for the rival game.”

A blessing is also the term Norvell also used to describe the bye week. 

A lot went wrong for the Rams, and Norvell said that he shoulders the blame for the rough start to the season. 

“I want to take responsibility for what happened this weekend,” Norvell said. “We had some real issues a year ago where we made a lot of negative things happen, and we really wanted to go into this season not beating ourselves, and I probably got to take the brunt of that responsibility.”

Despite what the team felt after the game, they’re keeping their heads up and looking for ways they can improve themselves during this week of work. 

One of the areas of concern for the Rams moving forward are the big plays through the air that have seemed to haunt the secondary. While the Rams defense showed poise and grit in the red zone, it was too easy for the Cougars to drive the field up to the point.

“I’m definitely proud of the defense for stepping up,” defensive back Jack Howell said. “I know that I let up a big slant that got down to the (red zone) and then chased him down (and) tackled him. And then we stood up for downs and got them off the field, but it’s a lack of execution really.”

There was a lot of anticipation for this game from fans and the team alike. Having two weeks to sit and reflect can be challenging. Despite that, Norvell said he isn’t discouraged. 

“I feel better about the group of guys that we have and what we can accomplish, and so we’re going to use this bye week to get better,” Norvell said. 


One thing the Rams will do over the next couple of weeks to prepare for their game against Colorado is adjust practice times. 

Though normally in the mornings, practices will now take place at night. Norvell said this will allow the players to adjust to the later game against the Buffaloes. 

Norvell said that this week gives them a chance to look at a few things and to adjust in practice what might have gone wrong in their week one loss. 

“That’s the beauty of having a bye week,” Norvell said. “Bye week is always an opportunity to go back and refine our football and to also look at a couple of schemes that we think can help us against our next opponent.” 

The team didn’t take the loss lightly and are looking to attack the bye week and do whatever it takes to improve their football and give them the best chance in their games. 

CU looked like one of the most electric offenses in their win over Texas Christian. Going into a hostile environment will make it a tall task for the Rams to come out victorious.

Despite the mountain left to climb, the players are ready to work hard and give it their all. 

“Watching the film, there’s some good and some bad — we’re close, we’re right there,” Holker said. “We’ll be good. We’ll regroup this week and keep going over film and definitely learn from it.”

Reach Damon Cook at or on Twitter @dwcook2001.

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About the Contributor
Damon Cook, Sports Editor
Damon Cook is the 2023-24 sports editor for the The Collegian and has been at the paper since August 2022. He started doing coverage on volleyball and club sports before moving onto the women's basketball beat. He is in his third year and is completing his degree with a major in journalism and media communication and a minor in sports management. As The Collegian's sports editor, Cook reports on CSU sports and helps manage the sports desk and content throughout the week. After having a year to learn and improve, Cook will now get to be part of a new age under the sports desk. The desk moved on from all but one other person and will now enter into a new era. Damon started school as a construction management major looking to go in a completely different direction than journalism. After taking the year off during the COVID-19 pandemic, he quickly realized that construction wasn't for him. With sports and writing as passions, he finally decided to chase his dreams, with The Collegian helping him achieve that. He is most excited to bring the best and most in-depth sports coverage that The Collegian can provide.

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