Fort Collins-Steve Addazio’s first full season as head coach of the Colorado State Rams began with the roar of the Canvas Stadium on Friday night.
The Rams, which led 1-3 in the 2020 season shortened by COVID, are usually treated roughly by South Dakota, which is a football championship division (formerly Division I-AA).
The Hare, who lost to Sam Houston in the FCS National Championship on May 16th, defeated the Rams 42-23 in a game that was delayed after a violent thunderstorm.
SDSU accumulated 466 yards against FBS’s veteran defense, who returned to the entire defensive line. Running back Pierre Strong Jr. and wide receiver Jadon Janke each scored two touchdowns. Quarterback Chris Oladokun, a graduate transfer, pitched two TDs and then rushed the other.
Jackrabbits’ defense limited CSU’s running game to 80 yards until the reserve team was late.
This is the third time the Rams have lost to an FCS opponent in the past 10 years. They lost to North Dakota State 22-7 in 2012, and lost to Illinois State 35-19 in 2018.
CSU trailed 21-10 at the end of the half, and early in the second half, when Addazio refused to play in the 4th and 1st positions of the Rams’ 38-yard line, he helped himself dig a hole. The Addazio staff asked for a middle road, and David Bailey, a senior transferred from Boston College, was suspended for no reason and SDSU took over.
After two games, the Hare leads 28-10. Oladoquin hit the near-end Tucker Kraft on the left plane to gain a 21-yard gain, and then Oladoquin found Janke on the right plane for a 17-yard touchdown.
Late in the third quarter, Colorado State University quarterback Todd Centeo fumbled near the midfield. Linebacker Carden Johnson recovered from the Rams’ 46-yard line. After seven games, Isaiah Davis scored a 2-yard run with 1:29 left in the third quarter, rewriting the score to 35. -10.
Since most of the 32,327 spectators had watched enough and left the stadium, the team traded for touchdowns early in the fourth quarter.
SDSU used a balanced offense to accumulate 280 yards and entered halftime with a 21-10 lead. After a three-pointer out in their first series and a 39-yard field goal was missed in their second series, Jackrabbits scored touchdowns in the next three rounds.
First, Strong rushed 48 yards TD from the left sideline and completed three games of 71 yards with 2:22 left in the first quarter. At the time, the Rams had an offensive distance of only 19 yards.
Strong’s TD may have sounded the alarm for CSU, and CSU responded on the subsequent drive. Bailey, a game after getting two yards in the fourth and first quarters, completed an impressive 17 games with 11:51 left in the second quarter, 75 yard kickoff, 1 yard TD Running.
Jackrabbits responded with their own long distances, running 75 yards in 12 games, leading 14-7. Yank opened wide in the apartment on the right and easily completed a 10-yard touchdown.
After CSU reduced the score to 14-10 on a 35-yard field goal with 1 minute 27 seconds left in the second quarter, SDSU scored 38 seconds later. Two games after Oladokun and Janke made a 46-yard pass to CSU’s 12-yard line, Strong scored from that position while running in the middle.
The Rams trailed the Hare’s 22-yard line 21-10, but chose to attempt a shot with 9 seconds left in the game. Kicker Cayden Camper’s 40-yard attempt went wide.