Colorado State completes comeback, beats Arkansas 34-27

Mike Bobo coaching his team up. Credit: Isaiah J. Downing, USA TODAY Sports.
Mike Bobo coaching his team up. Credit: Isaiah J. Downing, USA TODAY Sports.

Winner winner, chicken dinner.

The Colorado State Rams scrapped and fought for the entire 60 minutes against the Arkansas Razorbacks Saturday night, coming back from 18 down to win 34-27 in Fort Collins.

It was one of the greatest comebacks in Colorado State history, against an SEC opponent, in Fort Collins.

“First of all, I want to give thanks to God,” Mike Bobo said after the win. “Probably a lot of people out there thought we couldn’t get it done…But our team kept fighting, kept playing for each other…I’m proud to be a CSU Ram.”

Defensively, the Rams did everything well in the first half, limiting Arkansas to a mere 13 points. Unfortunately, the offense of Colorado State struggled and couldn’t get into the end zone, settling for three field goals.

Still, through one half, they trailed by only four points and were in the game.

Things started looking bleak for CSU in the third quarter when Arkansas was able to score two touchdowns and push their lead to 27-9, but the Rams wouldn’t roll over and die.

Graduate transfer K.J. Carta-Samuels led three, fourth quarter touchdown drives to propel the Rams to a victory over the Razorbacks. It was Carta-Samuels to Preston Williams — who had 12 catches for 154 yards and two touchdowns — Olabisi Johnson, Cam Butler and more in the comeback. What CSU couldn’t do was run the ball worth a darn, but it didn’t matter thanks to the hot passing attack.

Rewind to the first half and Colorado State started out on fire. They forced pressure, had a tackle for a loss and Jordan Fogal picked off Ty Storey on Arkansas’ first drive of the day. After one first down, the Rams elected to kick a 55-yard field goal, which Wyatt Bryan nailed to take the 3-0 lead.

Arkansas finally struck pay dirt on their third drive of the day. Colorado State actually held the Razorbacks to a 49-yard field goal attempt, but Anthony Hawkins jumped offsides, allowing Arkansas to march down for a rushing touchdown by Devwah Whaley and the 7-3 lead.

Arkansas pushed their lead to 10-3 and then 13-3 as Colorado State’s defense was more bend-don’t-break on Saturday afternoon than we’ve seen all year long, stopping the Razorbacks when it was needed most.

While Colorado State’s defense played much better to start the game, the offense was the no-show unit, recording all of two first downs for most of the first half. Later in the half, they gained three first downs in one drive, although, they had to again settle for a field goal, this time from 46 yards out.

Again, just before the break, the Rams defense came up with a huge stop when Emmanuel Jones picked off Ty Storey when Josh Watson rushed him, but the Rams again had to settle for a field goal to go into half trailing 13-9. It was, without a doubt, the best defense CSU played all year long.

After the half, Colorado State couldn’t put points on the board with their initial drive, but Arkansas could; Cole Kelley threw a beautiful touchdown to La’Michael Pettway to push their lead to 20-9.

After K.J. Carta-Samuels was stripped on a sack, Arkansas pushed the lead to 27-9 on a one-play, 64-yard drive and amazing run by T.J. Hammonds past every CSU defender.

Finally, Colorado State answered. Carta-Samuels found Cam Butler for a 54-yard pass and catch combination that set up a throwing score to a wide open Preston Williams. The Rams went for a two-point conversion and scored again, bringing the game to 27-17 with 2:46 left in the third quarter.

But the Rams weren’t done yet, they marched 94 yards to score when Carta-Samuels connected with Williams on a 31-yard pass and then the huge touchdown to bring the game within three points, at 27-24. And then, they tied it up at 27-27 with 5:19 to go.

Then, Carta-Samuels and the offense marched down field to score, with Izzy Matthews getting in, to win 34-27.

The Rams were 0-2 entering the game and are now 1-2 after the victory.


  • This was only the third time in CSU Football history they played an SEC team in Fort Collins.
  • Wyatt Bryan’s three field goals in the first half helped him go into the lead as first all-time in Rams football history in scoring. He now has 295 points in his career, passing Steve Bartolo with 294 points.