BOULDER, Colo. (AP) - Laviska Shenault Jr. ignited a lethargic Colorado with a 55-yard score when he picked up a teammate's fumble on a punt return and the Buffaloes rolled late in a 37-3 win over Texas State on Saturday.
Steven Montez threw a touchdown pass and ran in another score for Colorado (2-0). Leading 14-0 at halftime, the Buffaloes pulled away in the third quarter against the Bobcats (1-1), who were a 35-point underdog.
Stagnant on offense, the Buffaloes received a game-changing boost from the special teams late in the first quarter. Returner Isaiah Oliver fielded a punt, tried to break a tackle and had the ball ripped away. Shenault was there to pick it up and race 55 yards for the score.
Colorado's defense was supposed to be a work in progress this season. Instead, it's holding things together as the offense tries to find a rhythm. The "D'' allowed a 55-yard run by Anthony Taylor on the first play and then settled down.
Texas State finished with 283 total yards and two turnovers.
This defensive performance comes on the heels of holding Colorado State to three points the week before. It's the ninth time since 1950 the Buffaloes have held their opening two opponents to under a combined 20 points.
Colorado turned in two dazzling one-handed catches. The first was by receiver Bryce Bobo, whose reception set up a 2-yard TD by Montez in the second quarter. The other was from Oliver as the cornerback reached over a receiver to pick off a Damian Williams pass. Oliver's play in the third quarter led to a score to give Colorado some breathing room.
Texas State: The Bobcats represented well until the third quarter in their first game against a Pac-12 squad. On top of that, the school pockets a $900,000 paycheck for visiting Boulder.
Colorado: The Buffaloes are knocking on the door of the AP Top 25 poll and should pick up a few more votes. They haven't been ranked in September since 2003.
THIS & THAT
The Buffaloes have been on the right side of calling 15 of 16 coin tosses dating to the start of last season. ... Colorado is 18-10 all-time against Texas schools in Boulder. ... The freshman Shenault becomes the 15th player in school history with a TD on his first touch.
Texas State: Host Appalachian State next Saturday, the third meeting between the schools and the first at Bobcat Stadium in San Marcos, Texas.
Colorado: Meet Northern Colorado in the first game between the Buffaloes and Bears since 1934. Northern Colorado was supposed to play at No. 22 Florida this weekend, but it was canceled because of Hurricane Irma.