The sports pundits declared the Colorado Buffaloes national championship contenders in the first month of the season. Celebrities came out to Boulder to support coach Deion Sanders and the team as it was the place to be for the first four or five weeks of the year.
Times have changed dramatically.
Washington State handed Colorado its fifth straight loss on Friday night, 56-14. It’s the Buffaloes’ seventh loss in the last eight games after starting the year 3-0 with an upset win over No. 17 TCU and then gave No. 8 USC all it could handle.
“We’re falling short of what we’re capable of, that’s the part of this that’s tough to digest. We’ve got high expectations here, so this is tremendously disappointing,” Sanders said after the game.
Colorado quarterback Shedeur Sanders left the game with an injury in the second quarter. Coach Prime said his son “couldn’t grip the ball,” and after a second hit they kept him off of the field.
Sanders was 6-of-10 with 86 passing yards and a touchdown pass. But after seven points in the first quarter, the Buffaloes wouldn’t score again until the fourth.
Cougars quarterback Cameron Ward was 18-of-30 with 288 passing yards and two touchdown passes. Josh Kelly had six catches for 130 yards. Kyle Williams and Nakia Watson each had a touchdown catch.
“They came to play from start to finish. They executed early, they executed often, they came to play,” Colorado coach Deion Sanders said. “And with Shedeur out on top of that, it was tough.”
The Buffaloes fell to 4-7 on the year with each loss coming against Pac-12 opponents. Washington State improved to 5-6. Each team has one game left in the regular season.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.