Alamo Bowl Recap: Buffaloes dominated by Oklahoma State

It took nearly a decade to see the Colorado Buffaloes back in a bowl game. It took a little more than a quarter to see that it wasn’t going to be their night.

Oklahoma State left San Antonio with a 38-8 victory over Colorado in a game that was never close. The Cowboys outplayed Colorado in every phase of the game and it had to leave fans of the Buffaloes thinking of their last performance, a lopsided loss to Washington in the Pac-12 Championship Game.

It was close to a mirror image of that game, but from a Colorado perspective, this game may hae been worse.

Oklahoma State got out to a 3-0 lead after kicking a field goal on their first possession. Colorado would then go on a 14-play, 65-yard drive and come away with no points after Chris Graham missed a 47-yard field goal. It was all downhill from there.

Oklahoma State would respond with two quick touchdowns, the second of which a 5-yard pass from Mason Rudolph to James Washington. The Buffs struggled to contain Washington from the moment the game started, and his stats would have been even bigger had he not have to leave the game with what appeared to be a dislocated finger. Still, he had nine receptions for 171 yards and a touchdown.

Colorado, which prided itself on its pass defense all season, could not stop the air attack led by Rudolph. When the Buffs had the ball, they struggled mightily to even get a first down and just before halftime, Colorado quarterback Sefo Liufau had to leave the game after re-aggravating the ankle injury that has bothered him much of the season.

Steven Montez came into the game and faced a 3rd-and-27 situation on his first play. He tossed a screen pass to Phillip Lindsay who made moves and broke tackles for a 38-yard gain down to the Oklahoma State 38-yard line. It looked like the Buffs could get some points before halftime, but on the very next play, they tried to get cute. The pulled a double reverse and tossed the ball back to Montez who threw it to the end zone, but it was short and intercepted by Ashton Lampkin.

Oklahoma State took a 17-0 lead to the break.

Following the break, ESPN sideline reporter Molly McGrath reported that Liufau would not be returning to the game. Montez started the half but after two three-and-out possessions followed by another Oklahoma State score, Liufau returned to the game. If nothing else, the senior quarterback showed his toughness in his time with the school.

Unfortunately, the game was pretty much over by this point. Colorado did finally get on the board with 5:28 to play in the game on a 6-yard run by Liufau. He then found Lindsay on a pass for a 2-point conversion. The Cowboys tacked on another touchdown to put the icing on the cake and provide the final score.

VS.

1 2 3 4 T
Buffaloes 0 0 0 8 8
Cowboys 3 14 14 7 38

Colorado gave up 527 yards of total offense and Rudolph had 314 yards passing for Oklahoma State. Though the performance against Washington was bad, this one may have been worse.

Still, Colorado had a terrific season and will finish at 10-4, the school’s best season in quite some time. Coach Mike MacIntyre is still up for the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Award, so there’s plenty to be happy and optimistic about.

It’ll just be difficult to make some fans see that after having the bad taste of these last two losses in their mouths. o

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