LARAMIE, Wyo. — On a night when both offenses struggled in rain and snow, Wyoming’s attack came alive just in time, with Josh Allen driving his team 69 yards late and handing off to Kellen Overstreet for a 3-yard touchdown run, the difference in a 16-13 win over Colorado State on Saturday night.
Allen atoned for a lost fumble on the Cowboys’ previous possession and began the go-ahead, seven-play drive with a 17-yard completion to a diving Drew Van Maanen. Overstreet followed with a 16-yard run aided by a face-mask penalty to put the ball at the CSU 21. He and Allen covered the final 21 yards on the ground.
Colorado State, which led most of the contest, was then forced to punt with under three minutes to play and never got the ball back, as Allen and Overstreet rushed for first downs to run out the clock.
Allen completed 10 of 20 passes for 138 yards and ran for a team-high 60 yards for Wyoming (6-3, 4-1 Mountain West Conference).
“The previous drive before I fumbled I felt that we were establishing something good on the ground,” Allen said. “I was angry that I made that mistake, but our defense kept us in it and I was able to redeem myself.”
Wyoming coach Craig Bohl said the Cowboys often shun their indoor facility and practice in inclement weather to be prepared for games like this one. “We talked about weather in our pregame meal,” he said. “If you are going to play in Wyoming, you have to train in Wyoming.”
Dalyn Dawkins ran for 154 yards — his second-highest total of the season — and went over 1,000 yards for the first time. He ran his season total to 1,050 yards and moved past Gartrell Johnson into sixth place on Colorado State’s career rushing list with 2,836 yards.
Nick Stevens was 8 of 14 passing for 110 yards for Colorado State (6-4, 4-2). Stevens was averaging 306.1 passing yards per game, 12th in the FBS.
“It wasn’t too bad,” he said of the conditions. “There were a couple throws affected. I think it was more straight drop-back rhythm stuff — kinda hard to get footing out there.”
Izzy Mathews’ 1-yard TD run with 6:50 left in the second quarter broke a 3-3 tie, and early in the fourth, the Rams led 13-9 after Wyatt Bryan’s 27-yard field goal with 10:39 to go. Two plays later, Colorado State’s Shun Johnson forced a fumble by Allen, and the Rams’ Max McDonald recovered.
But on 4th-and-6 from the Wyoming 35, Colorado State’s Raashad Boddie was stopped by Carl Granderson and Javaree Jackson two yards short of a first down with just over seven minutes left, setting up the Cowboys’ only touchdown drive.
“We had a good play call. We tried to get them to jump,” Stevens said. “You can’t really question your coach’s decision. You have to execute and we didn’t execute the play.”
Colorado State coach Mike Bobo said the decision to run instead of pass was based on the conditions and the fact the Rams had two timeouts and could possibly get the ball again.
“We felt like we had the numbers in the box,” he said, adding that the game plan changed when the rain turned to snow late in the first half. “It was really hard footing out there for both sides. It just turned into an inside running game for both teams.”
Dawkins wasn’t ready to celebrate his yardage totals after losing two years in a row to the Rams’ arch-rival. “It hurts, knowing you laid everything on the line and still not come out on top,” he said.
CSU’s Michael Gallup, the nation’s leader in receiving yards and receiving yards per game, was limited to four catches for 29 yards, both season lows.
Colorado State finished with a 345-294 edge in yardage. Despite the wintry conditions, Allen’s fumble was the only turnover.
COLORADO STATE: The Rams are 0-4 against Front Range rivals Air Force and Wyoming over the last two seasons, and hopes for a conference title are all but dashed.
WYOMING: The Cowboys became bowl eligible for a second straight season — after four non-bowl seasons — and remain one game back of Boise State in the Mountain Division standings.
COLORADO STATE: The Rams host Boise State Saturday at 8:30 p.m. but are two games behind the Broncos with two games to play.
WYOMING: The Cowboys travel to Air Force on Saturday for an 8:15 p.m. kickoff.