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The Dam Links 9/17/2013: First Place*

*Insert caveat of your choice here

Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

It's true, Oregon State is in first place in the Pac-12 North, tied with WSU. Technically, they're in first place overall. Let's treasure that for a minute or two, then get back to the business of San Diego State. San Diego State has not looked good this season. In addition to getting blown out by Ohio State in Columbus (a forgivable offense), they lost decisively at home to an FCS team, Eastern Illinois. Not that we can exactly point and laugh at that, but I do believe it's a good sign. Lindsey Schnell provides a sneak peek of the Aztecs; notable amongst the statistics is that they give up 218 rushing yards a game. Let's not hope for a let-down before the game next weekend against undefeated and uber-well rested Colorado.

Sean Mannion and Trevor Romaine were named Pac-12 Offensive and Special Teams players of the week, respectively. Mannion also won the ESPN Pac-12 Blog's Player of the Week award (Brandin Cooks get an honorable mention in a competition with no second place).

Speaking of Mannion, he's got his name all over the NCAA stats leaderboard. Second in total offense, second in passing yards, second in total points responsible for, and tied for first in the country with 12 TD passes. He also finds himself at #10 in ESPN's Total Quarterback Rating. Brandin Cooks is second in receiving yards, and has two more receiving TD's than anyone else in the country. Not bad, Miss Corningstone, not bad at all.

It would be nice to see some amazing defensive stats, but I'm pretty sure that would only work if you turned the list upside down. And speaking of defense, OSU players are defending embattled coach Mark Banker.

Lots more from the ESPN Pac-12 Blog. Weekend rewind, which says Oregon State-Utah was the best game of the weekend. This makes sense, since it was one of the two nail biters, and the only one of the two where the lead story was not an officiating gaffe. The Pac-12 Power Rankings show an upward trend for Oregon State. Their Bowl Projections stay about the same as last week, although I definitely feel better about it; Oregon State vs. BYU in the Kraft Fight Hunger bowl. They have 10 teams projected to go bowling, though, which seems fairly ambitious to me. Finally, they provide a quick look at Week 4 games involving Pac-12 teams.

The Sporting News places the Beavs as #9 in the Pac-12.

O-live's Connor Letourneau reports that the Beavers have not given up on the run game, even though they are likely to be without Storm Woods this weekend. Kevin Hampton of the G-T provides a different report on the same topic. If there's a team we can work out some kinks in the running game left on the schedule, it's probably San Diego State.

As you might remember from 2005, the Biletnikoff Award is for the nation's best wide receiver, and the fans have one collective vote in the process. Not that it will likely matter in the grand scheme of things for the award, but you can vote for Brandin Cooks every day between now and the end of the season. Because mid-September is the time to be making these decisions.

This week's episode of the Illegal Participation podcast is out.

The Beavers mens' golf team is tied for third (out of 15 teams) at the Husky Invitational.

The mens' soccer team completed a weekend sweep over Seattle and Air Force. They are now 5-1 on the season. The women did not fare as well.

Also over the weekend, volleyball won three matches in two days at the University of Portland's tournament.

For today's short, let's look over some highlights from last year's-Arizona weekend's game. I don't know about you, but it feels good to watch this again. And less stressful.

And then there was this miracle:

(if someone can find a better embeddable version of the above, let me know and I will swap it out).

EDIT: Full video can be found here, but it will also be plugged in to Friday's TDL.

As always, vote in the poll below. If I missed anything (likely, since my entire Sunday was spent in Seattle and at Century Link field), post it in the comments below.