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Colorado scored on its first three possessions of the game, never looking back in a 45-13 rout of Colorado State in Denver. Steven Montez was almost perfect on the night, completing 22-of-25 passes for 338 yards and four touchdowns as the Buffs won the Rocky Mountain Showdown for the fourth straight time.

In rolling up 596 yards of total offense, there were many heroes for the Buff offense. Sophomore wide receiver Laviska Shenault set Rocky Mountain Showdown records, both with his 11 receptions and his 211 yards receiving. Virginia Tech graduate transfer running back Travon McMillian had 103 yards rushing (equaling the total rushing yards for CSU on the night) on only ten carries. K.D. Nixon also hit triple digits, with six receptions for 112 yards, highlighted by a 46-yard touchdown reception in the first quarter.

How big a night was it for the Buff offense? For the first time in school history, the Buffs had a 300-yard passer (Montez; 338), a 200-yard receiver (Shenault; 211) and a 100-yard rusher (McMillian; 103) in the same game.

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It’s been a long nine months.

Last November 25th, the 5-6 Buffs traveled to Salt Lake City to take on the 5-6 Utah Utes. The winner of the game would receive a bowl invitation and a chance to finish off the 2017 season with some momentum. The loser would stay home with a 5-7 record.

Utah raced out to a 28-0 halftime lead against Colorado, coasting to a 34-13 win. The Utes went on to beat West Virginia in the Heart of Dallas Bowl – the only Pac-12 team to win their bowl game – carrying momentum from those two wins into the 2018 campaign.

The Buffs, meanwhile, limped home with half as many wins as the year before, going from worst-to-first-to-worst in the Pac-12 South.

It’s been an off-season of criticism, of doubt, and of self-reflection.

While one game does not a true sample make, what the Buffs accomplished with their 45-13 rout of Colorado State in the 2018 Rocky Mountain Showdown is worthy of note.

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No. 9 Auburn scores late to defeat No. 16 Washington, 21-16 … No. 15 USC overcomes slow start to defeat UNLV … Oregon State falls to No. 5 Ohio State, 77-31

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Welcome to a new feature! “SAQ” has reviews of the Rocky Mountain Showdown (e.g., “CU rushing offense v. CSU rushing defense”) as well as the premier of my “Pac-12 Power Rankings” …

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Game Day! … Video: BuffStampede.com preview show … Steven Montez: ” I can’t wait to get out there and show what we have been working on, on offense” … New Buffs looking to make their mark: “The coaches did a great job finding the right guys, guys who want to come play”

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Neill Woelk’s Fast Five Keys for Rocky Mountain Showdown … All-time CU/CSU series history … Ticket sales for the 2018 Rocky Mountain Showdown … Recap of the 2017 RMS, a 17-3 victory for the Buff win

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First preview of the season!! … Which CSU team will show up Friday – the team which fell behind Hawai’i 37-7, or the team which out-scored the Rainbow Warriors 27-6 the rest of the game? … CU has won three straight Rocky Mountain Showdowns – will the Buffs make it four in a row?

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