The Dam Links:  2/26/2014

Bob Stanton-USA TODAY Sports

In case you missed it, Oregon State's women's basketball team is turning out its best season in almost 20 years and likely is Tourney Bound.

(And I'm not talking about the CBI tourney)

185 days until kickoff...

The womens' basketball team has earned the leadoff spot in this week's TDL.

The team beat up the Huskies, 77-57, in Seattle on Sunday. Had they lost that game, the two teams would have been tied in the standings. Instead, they won by 20. The Huskies are really good; they provided Stanford their only conference loss of the year, also in Seattle. Scott Rueck's team is the pleasant surprise of OSU's winter slate (and probably all school year), and is now projected as a #10 seed in ESPN's latest Bracketology. The Beavers are 19-9 overall, 11-5 in conference. One more win, in two home games against the Arizona schools this weekend, would give the Beavers their best record since 1995-96. Their current seven game win streak is tied for the longest conference win streak in school history. The Beavers' website has a preview of Friday's game against Arizona; the women Wildcats are as bad as the men are good -- they are 5-22 and 1-15 on the season. Sunday's game against Arizona State will likely be more competitive, and will likely amount to the conference's third place game.

Steve Gress of the Gazette Times points out the womens' team is playing its best ball when it counts the most.

What's this? An Oregon State basketball team that's actually good? Total protonic reversal.

Brandin Cooks ran a 4.33 40-yard dash at the combine last weekend, and he was the fastest player to do it wearing Adidas. On Sunday, Adidas gave him the prize for being the fastest player in his position group -- $10,000. Thursday, after the combine was finished, it turned out he was the fastest player overall wearing Adidas -- the prize for that? $100,000. Not bad for 4.33 seconds of work; that works out to just over $83 million per hour.

And his prize was given as all cash prizes should be given: a suitcase full of cash. Kent State running back Dri Archer was the fastest overall at the combine (4.26), but apparently was not wearing Adidas shoes; I wonder if he regrets that decision now.

Rashaad Reynolds also had a very good combine, although not nearly as (immediately) lucrative as Brandin's.

Now that the combine is over, expect another flurry of mock drafts. SB Nation's Dan Kadar projects both Cooks and Crichton to be late first round picks.

ESPN's Pac-12 blog is highlighting one player from each team who is expected to step up in the offseason; WR Richard Mullaney is their choice for Oregon State.

The once and future Independence Bowl has been renamed; yet another reason for Oregon State to avoid going to Shreveport for their post-season destination.

Angus Brandt provides a steadying influence for the Beavers. They could use that this weekend in Los Angeles, where they need to salvage at least a split to keep an outside shot at an NIT berth alive. OregonLive compiled video of Brandt, Craig Robinson, Roberto Nelson, and Devon Collier, looking at their Thursday game against the Trojans. The OSU website has the official preview.

The first pitch for Friday's baseball home opener against Wright State got moved to 5:05pm

Ben Wetzler and OSU are appealing his suspension for violating the "no agent" rule, which would make him elgible immediately instead of on Sunday. In case you missed it last week, here's full release from OSU's full response to the NCAA regarding the Ben Wetzler situation.

The baseball polls are out after Oregon State's 1-2 weekend in the Pac-12/Big 10 Challenge (the polls were released before Monday's game). Baseball America drops the Beavers to 4th. Perfect Game drops them to 6th, and Collegiate Baseball drops the Beavers to 8th. The National Collegiate Baseball Writers (who had the Beavers first last week) drop them all the way to 7th. The fifth major poll, the USA Today Coaches' Poll, doesn't start until later in the year.

The 14th ranked gymnastics team hosts a big meet Saturday at 6pm -- opponents include Arizona State and #7 Nebraska.

The Pac-12 wrestling championships are this Sunday in Palo Alto. The wrestling team put together a video to try to help and explain the sport: Wrestling 101.

The softball team heads down to California for 6 games this weekend, include two against teams ranked in the top six in the country.

Arguably the best horse racing call ever:

I'm sure you heard that Harold Ramis, director and/or writer of several of my favorite comedies of all time -- Ghost Busters, Caddyshack, Stripes, Multiplicity, National Lampoon's Vacation, and more, passed away this week at the age of 69. I wish he'd written Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure, because that would give me an appropriate joke here. He will be missed. He also acted in his films, most famously as Chief Nerd Egon Spengler in Ghost Busters. One of my favorite SFW exchanges from the movie:

Don't forget to vote in the poll below, and if I missed any Beaverage, leave it in the comments.

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