The No. 4 Washington Huskies scored first and last and too many times in between as they ran away with the Pac-12 Conference Championship, defeating the No. 8 Colorado Buffaloes 41-10 in Santa Clara.

It was a bad omen when the Buffs sent the opening kickoff out of bounds, then took a pass interference penalty on the first first play of the game. Things didn’t get much better for Colorado when they lost their starting quarterback, Sefo Liufau, on the opening series of the game with a leg injury. The CU defense and backup QB Steven Montez kept things close through the first half and the Buffs trailed 14-17 at the break.

It was all Washington in the second half, though, as Liufau returned and threw a pick-six to open the half. Things didn’t get better from there. Liufau was intercepted again on the very next possession and again as the third quarter came to a close. Washington scored three touchdowns in the quarter and added another 10 points in the fourth to run away with the Pac-12 title.

The Huskies outgained the Buffaloes 383 to 163, limiting Colorado to just nine first downs. Liufau and Montez combined to go just 8-for-25 with Liufau’s three interceptions. Heisman Trophy candidate Jake Browning was not much better at 9-for-24, but two of his completions found the end zone.

Washington did most of its damage by running backs Miles Gaskin and Lavon Coleman. Gaskin rushed for a game-high 159 yards on 29 carries, while Coleman also eclipsed the century mark at 101 yards. Coleman found the end zone on Washington’s first drive.

It was a disappointing end to a season almost no one expected. The Buffs were picked to finish last in the Pac-12 South, yet won the division with an 8-1 record. Their only losses on the season came to Michigan, who may also end up in the playoff, USC, by four points on the road with Montez at the helm, and to Washington.

The loss runs Colorado’s record to 10-3, their best finish since 2001 when they won the Big 12 and were ranked as high as No. 3 in the AP poll. With the defeat, any hopes of a College Football Playoff berth came to an end. Now, the Buffs must hope that the ranking committee looks favorably upon them despite the lopsided loss. Washington is likely headed to the playoff, while the Buffs will go to the Rose Bowl if, and only if, they do not slip below USC in the rankings.

Despite the disappointing end, Colorado has much to be proud of at season’s end.