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THURSDAY, OCT. 4, 2012, 6 A.M.

Mannion, Mason and links


FROM PULLMAN -- Washington State will practice for the last time on its own field today before departing for Corvallis tomorrow. We'll do the same, though far more driving will be involved. And also a decent amount of linking. Read on.


Sean Mannion, Oregon State's sophomore quarterback, is off to a strong start for the Beavers, so we wrote about him for today's newspaper. We made our Pac-12 picks as usual, too. Also, we wrote about the revelation that Marcus Mason might see some time at running back this week on the blog last night. ... Mike Leach was a guest on John Canzano's radio show, and you can listen to his segment here. ... From Oregon State: Brandin Cooks and Storm Woods are good friends, though one of them has an odd toenail painting superstition. ... OSU wants its linemen a little lighter.

Around the Pac-12 ... Arizona's backup center was happy to see some playing time last week. ... Arizona State's quarterback doesn't mind handling the team's punting duties. ... Oregon's Kenjon Barner is running with more aggression. Good story here about Washington's defensive coordinator returning "home," in a sense, this week. ... Stanford is trying to reignite its passing game. ... There's a tough stretch upcoming for Colorado's defense, which hasn't exactly had an easy time of it so far. ... The memories of Washington's last win over Oregon are fading. (I was at that game, the same weekend I saw Simon and Garfunkel with my parents at the Rose Garden. Still the best show I've seen. Funny the way we remember things.) ... UCLA's kicker is working on his technique.

There is one Pac-12 game tonight -- USC at Utah, 6 p.m. (ESPN). This is the first road game of quite a few this month for the Trojans. Utah says it's up for the challenge of facing "mighty" USC. It's the Trojans' first trip to Salt Lake City in nearly a century. USC wants one of its star receivers to get untracked.

Christian Caple can be reached at Twitter: @ChristianCaple

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