Another rivalry game, another loss for the Colorado State Rams. Five straight rivalry losses, in fact.

Colorado State couldn’t slow down, let alone stop, the Air Force Falcons Saturday in Fort Collins, allowing a rushing attack of 413 total yards, with four rushing touchdowns. The Rams defense forced one, single punt all afternoon, and that came with mere seconds remaining on the game clock as Air Force did anything and everything they wanted.

“My message to the team? We got our asses kicked,” Bobo said to the media after the loss.

It wasn’t just a loss, like Bobo said, the Rams got their butts whooped and, as the head coach continued, “It should hurt. It ought to be embarrassing. I’m embarrassed. That was what we put on the field today and I’m in charge of that. I’m also in charge of getting us ready for Wyoming next week and I plan to be ready.”

Nick Stevens and Michael Gallup, two of the most important players on the offensive side of the ball, agreed they were embarrassed after the loss.

“Everybody’s down [in the locker room],” Gallup said. “I guess you could say it’s embarrassing.”

While Bobo has done a good job pushing his team this season, to a 6-3 record overall after this loss and 4-1 in conference, his Rams are 2-6 in all-important rivalry games during his tenure. Things don’t get any easier, either, with yet another one of those trophy games on the horizon with the Wyoming Cowboys in Laramie next week.

Colorado State possesses three rivalries and they face all three of those teams every year in the Rocky Mountain Showdown against Colorado (loss), this game versus Air Force (loss) and Wyoming (next game). The Centennial Cup? It remains with the Buffs, whom Bobo is 0-3 against and has lost by a combined score of 88-34. As little as that game seems to matter to Colorado fans – they’re “supposed” to beat CSU every year – it means a whole lot to the Rams fanbase.

For some, Air Force is a more hated rival, and the Rams have never done well against that maddening, terrible, triple-option offense. CSU lost 45-28 today and literally couldn’t stop Air Force – outside of the early interception by Anthony Hawkins – which was laughably bad. The Ram – Falcon Trophy? It’s not “ours” as Marvin Kinsey tweeted earlier in the week, it remains with the cadets in Colorado Springs.

Meanwhile, Air Force players went to twitter proclaiming “We run this state” while CU likes to call it “Our state” and CSU is left with an empty trophy case with one more chance to put some shiny hardware inside.

Because, next up the Rams play for the coveted Bronze Boot, which means the most to another section of the Rams contingent. It is, of course, the opponent Colorado State has faced the most times at 108 in total, with their inaugural meeting even being contested between the two schools. And, no matter the teams’ records, Laramie, Wyoming is always a difficult place to play, with cold winds regularly whipping around War Memorial Stadium at 7,215 feet above sea level.

When it comes to Wyoming, Bobo is 1-1, winning in Laramie in 2015 but losing the last ever battle for the Bronze Boot inside Hughes Stadium last year. After jumping to a 14-3 lead, Bobo’s team was outscored 35-3 to lose that game 38-17. Sound a little like this Saturday’s game? It should.

Bobo’s not buying into the “trophy game” concept, even if his opponents seemingly are finding a little more juice from playing in a rivalry game, while his team is simply not.

“Every game’s a damn trophy game,” the fired-up Bobo responded when asked if the loss hurt more to a rival. “Every game is. We came ready to play but they came ready to play more than us. And whipped us.”

Bobo’s “never satisfied,” his catchphrase since joining the program in 2015, and he clearly wasn’t happy with the whooping his team took on their home field Saturday. Especially considering the green and gold are in serious contention for the Mountain West Championship, a goal Bobo laid out since Day One in Fort Collins.

But, Bobo’s Rams aren’t just 2-6 against rival teams, they’re 0-2 in bowl games and 1-3 against Power 5 conference schools not named the University of Colorado. Add it all up and the Rams are 3-11 in the biggest games they’ve played under Bobo, who’s 20-15 overall.

The loss Saturday was a brutal blow to Bobo’s boys for three reasons. First and foremost, they lost the Ram-Falcon Trophy, which was created by an ROTC Commander at Colorado State in 1978. Secondly, it helped Air Force bounce back, being their third straight win and, now at 4-4 (3-2 MW), they’re still in competition in the Mountain Division.

And most importantly, the loss for the Rams dropped CSU out of first in that Mountain Division, where they were leading, and Wyoming is up 42-0 at halftime as this is written, so the Cowboys will be right on the Rams’ tails, too. Colorado State was cruising in the lead, now they face a hot Wyoming team on the road and then come home to play Boise State – a team the Rams have never beaten – in what will likely be a key game if Bobo’s Rams want to win the conference. Or, even have a shot at making the title game.

It’s early in Bobo’s tenure, sure, but if the Rams can’t find a way to win a key, rivalry game on the road next Saturday, and if they can’t beat Boise, those high expectations and dreams of winning the Mountain West will vanish like the thin smoke from the cannon at the on-campus stadium.