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No. 5 Kansas State 44, Colorado 21
Associated Press


BOULDER, Colo. -- Jonathan Beasley threw three first-half touchdown passes and No. 5 Kansas State opened its Big XII campaign by overwhelming Colorado 44-21 on Saturday.

Josh Scobey
Kansas State running back Josh Scobey celebrated one of his two touchdowns Saturday against Colorado.
Josh Scobey ran for two touchdowns for the Wildcats (5-0), who scored three straight TDs after Colorado (0-4) had reduced the deficit to seven midway through in the second quarter.

Safety John McGraw returned an interception 71 yards for another score late in the third quarter, putting Kansas State ahead 41-13.

After going 0-11-1 against Colorado from 1985-96, Kansas State has won four straight meetings. It also was the Wildcats' 30th straight victory in the month of September, a streak that dates to 1991.

The 44 points were the most Kansas State has scored in the 56-game series, eclipsing the 38 points it scored in beating Colorado 38-6 in 1984.

Colorado got a glimpse of its future when highly recruited freshman quarterback Craig Ochs made his first collegiate appearance. Ochs, who did not want to redshirt, replaced Bobby Pesavento early in the second quarter and played the remainder of the game.

Ochs promptly led Colorado to a touchdown on his first series, scoring on a 17-yard scramble. He completed 7 of 7 passes on a fourth-quarter scoring drive culminating in his 2-yard TD pass to John Minardi.

Ochs scrambled and completed a 50-yard pass to Javon Green in the closing minutes on a drive that fizzled at the Kansas State 25.

Ochs completed 15 of 24 passes for 208 yards with one TD and one interception. Beasley was 15-for-25 for 293 yards.

Beasley's three TD passes gave the Wildcats a 34-13 lead at intermission.

The Wildcats, striking quickly, had a trio of three-play scoring drives in the half, including their first two possessions which produced a 13-0 lead.

Two minutes into the game, Aaron Lockett returned a punt 49 yards to the Colorado 25. Three plays later, Beasley hit tight end Shad Meier on a 10-yard scoring pass.

Lockett's 50-yard reception set up Scobey's 3-yard run for another quick score, but Jamie Rheem's extra point, pushed back 5 yards by a false start, was blocked.

Pesavento, making his second straight start, passed 40 yards to Minardi to set up Jeremy Flores' 41-yard field goal.

After the Wildcats' Quincy Morgan fumbled the ensuing kickoff, Flores kicked a 48-yarder, making it 13-6 with 6:18 left in the opening period.

Beasley drove the Wildcats 59 yards in nine plays early in the second quarter, carrying three times for 32 yards and passing 10 yards to Morgan to beat a blitz for a 20-6 lead.

Ochs then entered the game and drove Colorado 80 yards for its first touchdown. He passed 41 yards to tight end Daniel Graham before scrambling the final 17 yards.

But Kansas State countered with another three-play scoring drive. Running back Chris Claybon got open along the left sideline and turned a short pass into a 74-yard gain to the 3, and Scobey made it 27-13.

Following Flores' shanked punt that traveled only 8 yards, the Wildcats, despite having no timeouts, went 43 yards in the closing seconds for another score -- Beasley's 8-yard pass to Lockett.

 Jonathan Beasley hits Aaron Lockett for the TD.
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 Aaron Lockett gives K-State good field position with a 50-yard kick return.
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 Jonathan Beasley hits Chris Claybon for 74 yards to set up a score.
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 Craig Ochs puts Colorado in the end zone with a 17-yard TD run.
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