Shedeur Sanders leads No. 18 Colorado past Colorado State in OT thriller

Sep 16, 2023; Boulder, Colorado, USA; Colorado Buffaloes quarterback Shedeur Sanders (2) passes the ball against the Colorado State Rams during the first half at Folsom Field. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Wevers-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Andrew Wevers-USA TODAY Sports

Shedeur Sanders threw two touchdowns in overtime to Michael Harrison as No. 18 Colorado recovered from an 11-point, fourth-quarter deficit to post a 43-35 double-overtime victory over Colorado State on Saturday night in the Rocky Mountain Showdown at Boulder, Colo.

Trevor Woods’ interception in the end zone ended Colorado State’s last chance as the Buffaloes (3-0) remained unbeaten under first-year coach Deion Sanders.

Shedeur Sanders completed 38 of 47 passes for 348 yards, four touchdowns and one interception for Colorado. Jimmy Horn Jr. and Xavier Weaver (nine receptions, 98 yards) also had scoring receptions and Shilo Sanders returned an interception for a touchdown.

Tory Horton set a Colorado State record with 16 receptions and had 133 yards and one score and also threw a touchdown pass to Dallin Holker for the Rams (0-2). Holker had two scoring catches.

Colorado drove 98 yards on seven plays and moved within 28-26 on Shedeur Sanders’ 45-yard touchdown pass to Jimmy Horn Jr. with 36 seconds left in regulation. Harrison then caught the ensuing two-point conversion pass to tie it.

In overtime, Shedeur Sanders found Harrison in the center of the end zone for a 3-yard score. But Colorado State answered with Brayden Fowler-Nicolosi’s 8-yard scoring pass to Horton to tie it at 35.

Shedeur Sanders threw an 18-yard scoring pass to Harrison in the second overtime and tacked on a two-point pass to Weaver. Woods then picked off Fowler-Nicolosi to give Colorado its sixth straight win in the series.

Fowler-Nicolosi completed 34 of 47 passes for 367 yards, three touchdowns and three interceptions for the Rams. Louis Brown IV had 10 receptions for 131 yards and a touchdown and Holker had six catches for 109 yards for Colorado State.

Ron Hardge III returned a fumble for a touchdown for the Rams.

Colorado two-way standout Travis Hunter exited the game and was taken to a local hospital for further evaluation. The school didn’t immediately announce Hunter’s ailment but he took a massive shot to his midsection from Rams safety Henry Blackburn with 4:53 left in the first quarter.

Holker’s second touchdown gave the Rams a 28-17 lead with 11:22 remaining in the contest. The tight end made a nice grab of a low toss by Fowler-Nicolosi and raced for a 35-yard touchdown.

The Buffaloes moved within eighth with 7:33 left on Alejandro Mata’s 41-yard field goal.

Earlier, Shilo Sanders intercepted Fowler-Nicolosi and returned it 80 yards for a touchdown with 8:09 left in the first quarter.

Less than a minute later, Horton caught a backward pitch from Fowler-Nicolosi and tossed a 30-yard touchdown pass to Holker.

On the Buffaloes’ next possession, Hunter lost a fumble and Hardge picked it up and raced 45 yards to give the Rams a 14-7 lead with 6:16 left.

Colorado knotted the score when Shedeur Sanders tossed a 24-yard touchdown pass to Weaver with 3:41 left in the period.

In the second quarter, Fowler-Nicolosi connected on a 15-yard scoring pass to Brown to give Colorado State a 21-14 lead with 4:08 left.

Mata made a 20-yard field goal with 14:24 left in the game to cut Colorado’s deficit to four.

–Field Level Media

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