SALT LAKE CITY – The CSU Rams two-game road trip got off to a very slow start Saturday afternoon. The Ram’s (3-4 1-2) fell to the University of Utah (8-0 4-0) 49-16 in front of a crowd of 44,000 that filled Rice-Eccles Stadium. The defeat ranks as CSU’s most lopsided conference loss of the season.
Ram’s head coach Steve Fairchild explained that he thought his team had opportunities to hang with the Utah, but failed to execute enough to stay in the game.
"We came in here and played a very good football team and hung in their during the first half," the first year Rams head coach said. "I was pleased with our physicality and effort, but in the end we didn’t make enough plays. It kind of got out of hand there in the second half."
The Rams came out of the gates strong, scoring a touchdown on their first drive of the afternoon for the second week in a row. Quarterback Billy Farris connected with Dion Morton on a 32 yard score, evening the game at 7-7 mid way through the first quarter. CSU’s offense would stall from there, as Utah held the Rams to three field goals the remainder of the afternoon.
Wide Receiver Rashaun Greer said that it was a tough game to lose, especially after a promising beginning.
"It’s a real tough loss, especially with how good we played in the first half," the junior said. "Then in the second half we didn’t come out and execute. This is going to go down as another game we should have preformed a little more."
CSU was outscored 21-3 in the second half.
Utah back up quarterback Corbin Loucks rushed for two second half touchdowns including a 69 yard romp to put the Ute’s up by 33. Utah scored on 7 of 11 opportunities, posting five rushing touchdowns and adding two more through the air.
Ram’s linebacker Jeff Horinek was disappointed in how CSU’s defense played, giving credit to Utah for putting together a game plan that caught the Ram’s off guard.
"They were able to draw up a scheme we weren’t quite ready for," the senior said. "We weren’t able to adjust enough to come out with a win. They just outplayed us today."
Utah quarterback Brian Johnson said he came into the game hoping to prove what the Utes were capable of offensively.
"We heard and over and over for the majority of the season how inconsistent we were, so we just wanted to come out and make a statement today," the senior said. "This team was focused and ready to play."
Up next for the Rams is a trip to the west coast to face San Diego State. Fairchild explained that it’s critical to forget the loss to Utah and focus on the Aztecs.
"We’ll go back to work and we can’t let this be more than what it is, just one loss. Our goal now is to go to San Diego State and find a way to be 4-4."
Football beat reporter Adam Bohlmeyer can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Click here to visit Sports Blog