Read this story at

The Colorado State Rams saw their fourth-quarter comeback bid fall just short on Saturday afternoon, falling 31-24 at Minnesota before an announced crowd of 44,854 at TCF Bank Stadium. Colorado State fell to 2-2 with the loss, while Minnesota improved to 3-0.

“I told our guys I’m proud of the way they fought,” said Colorado State head coach Mike Bobo. “It was what I asked for, to keep fighting and give us a chance to be in the game in the fourth quarter, which we were.”

The Rams pulled to within one score of the Gophers with 6:24 to play when freshman quarterback Collin Hill connected with junior Michael Gallup for a 15-yard touchdown. CSU then forced a three-and-out to take possession at its own 24-yard line with 4:19 on the clock. Colorado State moved the ball across midfield but the drive stalled at the Minnesota 45 when Hill could not connect with tight end Dalton Fackrell on 4th-and-5, turning it over to the Golden Gophers with 1:50 remaining.

“At the end of the day, they made more plays on third down, they secured a little bit better, but I believe we are close to becoming a pretty good football team,” Bobo said. “The improvement from week 1 to week 4 is what you look for as a coach. I believe we are getting better. You like to get better and have a reward with a victory on the road against a Big Ten opponent, but that’s life sometimes. Like I told the guys, sometimes you don’t get what you want. You’ve got to answer and you go quit or go back to work and I expect us to go back to work.”

Colorado State’s final touchdown drive was kept alive by a bold call by Bobo for a fake punt, after the Rams appeared headed toward a three-and-out, facing 4th-and-5 at their own 30-yard line, trailing 31-17. Bobo sent the punt team onto the field, but All-America punter Hayden Hunt, after fielding the deep snap, completed a pass over the middle to safety Braylin Scott for a 29-yard gain to the Minnesota 41-yard line. Six plays later the Rams were in the end zone and trailing by just a touchdown with under five minutes to play.

Colorado State trailed Minnesota’s 17-7 at halftime, but chipped away at the lead by outgaining the Golden Gophers 190-182 in the second half, and earning 15 first downs to Minnesota’s 10. The Rams’ defense held the Golden Gophers in check over a five-series stretch from the second quarter into the early third, allowing just 44 total yards and just 3 points—as CSU pulled to within three at 17-14—before surrendering 76- and 81-yard touchdown drives.

The Rams’ offense scored on three consecutive second-half drives of 53, 59 and 75 yards, including two touchdowns wrapped around a 41-yard Wyatt Bryan field goal, but were unable to punch in the tying touchdown late in the game.

Hill, making his second career start, completed 15 of 30 passes for 182 yards and one touchdown, with one interception. He rushed for 28 yards on nine attempts and was sacked three times. In the second half, when CSU outscored Minnesota 17-14, Hill was 11-for-17 for 102 yards and his only touchdown.

Gallup was Hill’s top target with six receptions for 53 yards and the one score, his second in as many games. Six Rams combined to rush for 158 yards, led by sophomore Izzy Matthews with 47 yards on 7 carries (6.7) and Marvin Kinsey, Jr., with 43 yards on 8 carries, including an 18-yard first-quarter touchdown that tied the game at 7.

Sophomore linebacker Josh Watson led the Rams with 12 tackles (9 solo), including two for lost yardage. Junior safety Jake Schlager added 10 stops (6 solo) and senior linebacker Kevin Davis added 9 (2 solo), including a tackle for loss.

“I see improvement,” Bobo said. “I talked about what you look for as a coach is improvement. You are going to improve from week 1 to week 2, week 2 to week 3, week 3 to week 4. Are we even close to where I want to be as a football team? No, but we’ve got one ingredient that you look for as a football coach, is that they keep coming back, keep working, keep fighting.”

The Rams return home next Saturday, Oct. 1, to begin Mountain West play with the annual Border War vs. Wyoming. Kickoff is set for 8:15 p.m. and the game will be televised by ESPNU.

It was announced Friday that a limited number of tickets remain available for the game. Fans may purchase tickets online by visiting either or Beginning at 8 a.m. Monday, tickets also may be purchased by phone at 800-491-RAMS (7267) or in person at the McGraw Center Ticket Office or the Ram Zone retail store in Old Town Fort Collins (172 N. College Ave.) during normal business hours. Students may pick up their free tickets at the McGraw Center or the Lory Student Center box office, or online at