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Denver Pioneers men's basketball picked third in WAC

In a new-look Western Athletic Conference, media members believe that the Denver Pioneers will be making some noise.

Andrew Fielding-US PRESSWIRE

The Denver Pioneers were picked by the media as the third-best WAC team in the 2012-13 preseason poll. Utah State was chosen as the team to beat in the restructured conference, and New Mexico State came in second ahead of the Pioneers.

In its first season in the WAC, Denver received one first-place vote in the media poll and 181 points overall. Utah State earned 232 total points and 15 first-place votes while New Mexico State garnered eight first-place votes and 223 points.

The Pioneers have a good number of returning players and CBS blogger Matt Norlander even gave them the nod as the best team in the new-look WAC. The team went 22-9 last season.

Here's a peek at the entire preseason poll:

1. Utah State (15) 232

2. New Mexico State (8) 223

3. Denver (1) 181

4. Louisiana Tech 162

5. Idaho 144

6. UT Arlington (1) 137

7. UTSA 104

8. Seattle U 77

9. San Jose State 61

10. Texas State 54