Facing one of college football's most prolific passers, Colorado's defense made the bigger plays.
Safety Medford Moorer intercepted a Kliff Kingsbury pass and returned it 51 yards for a touchdown, and tackle Tyler Brayton returned Kingsbury's fumble 14 yards for another score as the No. 21 Buffaloes beat Texas Tech 37-13 Saturday.
"That was a heck of a defensive effort," Colorado coach Gary Barnett said. "I can't remember another one like that - maybe the last time we played Oklahoma (a 38-24 win in 1999)."
Chris Brown ran for 149 yards and a touchdown, and Robert Hodge passed for two scores as Colorado (6-2, 4-0 Big 12) overcame critical penalties to post its fifth straight victory. Colorado scored the last 27 points after Tech took a 13-10 lead in the second quarter.
The Buffaloes defense limited Texas Tech to 359 total yards - 125 yards below the Red Raiders' season average - and 25 points below their average.
Texas Tech (5-4, 2-2) crossed midfield only once in the second half, a drive that ended when freshman safety Akarika Dawn swatted away Kingsbury's fourth-down pass.
On Tech's next series, Brayton sacked Kingsbury, forcing a fumble that Brayton picked up and returned for a TD with 4:22 remaining.
Kingsbury, the nation's leader in completions, attempts, yards passing and touchdown passes, was 36-for-65 for 268 yards and no TDs.
Kingsbury, who had been intercepted only six times in 419 attempts coming into the game, was picked off a career-high four times, including Moorer's runback that put the Buffaloes ahead 30-13 late in the third quarter.
"It was a total collapse on offense, a total collapse on special teams, a great game by our defense," Tech coach Mike Leach said. "We can't be in this business and just play on one side of the ball. Anybody on offense and special teams should be ashamed of themselves."
Asked if Kingsbury, who required eight stitches to close a wound on his throwing forearm during practice this week, was affected by the injury, Leach said, "I don't think so."
Leach declined to allow the media to talk to his offensive players after the game.
Brown, the nation's leading rusher, had his fifth straight 100-yard game despite missing part of the second half with a hip pointer. He raised his season total to 1,303 yards.
Moorer's interception return made it 30-13 with 1:46 to go in the third quarter.
"I just read the quarterback's eyes," Moorer said. "When you put pressure on the quarterback the way we did, it makes it easier."
Colorado led 16-13 at halftime despite its penalties. The Buffs were flagged five times for 49 yards in the first quarter alone and 11 times for 103 yards overall.
On its first possession, Texas Tech, helped by two Colorado penalties, went ahead 3-0 on Robert Treece's 22-yard field goal. An offside penalty on a punt on fourth-and-4 enabled Tech to retain possession, and a subsequent personal foul moved Tech to the Colorado 31.
Rod Sneed's 46-yard kickoff return helped set up Pat Brougham's 48-yard field goal to make it 3-3.
Moments later, Kingsbury was hit by Brayton, and his pass fluttered to linebacker Kory Mossoni, who returned the interception 41 yards to the 5. Brown scored from the 3.
Tech tied it late in the period after Joselio Hanson's interception near midfield. Facing fourth-and-26, Treece kicked a 48-yard field goal, but Colorado was whistled for another personal foul, giving Tech a first down at the 16. Henderson scored on a 2-yard run.
Colorado was pinned deep in its own territory after a holding penalty on the kickoff, but Mark Mariscal's 66-yard punt got the Buffs out of trouble.
Treece's 42-yard field goal put Tech ahead 13-10 midway through the second period. Colorado freshman defensive back J.J. Billingsley left the game with a sprained ankle during the series, depleting an already thin secondary.
Clinton Greathouse's 16-yard punt set up Colorado for a go-ahead drive late in the half. Hodge passed 14 yards to Derek McCoy for the TD.