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Denver Picked Third in Both 2012-13 WAC Coaches and Media Polls
Courtesy: Denver Athletics  
Release: 10/24/2012
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DENVER - The 2012-13 Western Athletic Conference men's basketball coaches and media both picked the Pioneers to finish third in the conference, the WAC announced today.

The media tabbed Utah State as this year's favorite, while the coaches selected New Mexico State. Both selected Utah State junior guard Preston Medlin as Preseason Player of the Year.

"It's pretty clear what the media and coaches polls are saying: the WAC is a two-team league and everyone is trying to catch Utah State and New Mexico State," head coach Joe Scott said. "They are the class of the league and have been to the NCAA Tournament. The key question will be if our team and other schools contend with them? Louisiana Tech has everyone coming back from an 18-win season. Idaho and UT-Arlington had good years and have players back. This is a very good league with a lot of depth. Hopefully our tough nonconference schedule will help prepare us for a competitive league schedule."

Junior Chris Udofia (Irving, Texas) was selected as a Preseason All-WAC First Team. Udofia returns after earning the 2011-12 Sun Belt Conference Defensive Player of the Year, All-SBC First Team and NABC All-District 24 honors. Udofia, DU's Male Co-Athlete of the Year, finished last season ranked third in the SBC and 30th in the nation in blocked shots per game (2.3), and fourth in the conference in points per game (14.5) and field goal percentage (.537).

"Obviously, this recognition is well earned for Chris, coming off winning the Sun Belt Conference Defensive Player of the Year award and helping us to a 22-win season," Scott added. "Hopefully, he will be able to pick up where he finished last season and keep improving."

The Pioneers finished 2011-12 with a 22-9 overall record, the best season in its Division I history. Lone senior Chase Hallam (Mesquite, Texas), and sophomores Royce O'Neale(Killeen, Texas) and Brett Olson (Highlands Ranch, Colo.) join Udofia as key returners for the Pioneers.

2012-13 Preseason Men's Basketball Coaches Poll

Rank   Teams (1st Place Votes)       Points

1.         New Mexico State (5)           77

2.         Utah State (5)                        76

3.         Denver                                  65

4.         Louisiana Tech                      54

5.         UT Arlington                          48

6.         Idaho                                      45

7.         UTSA                                       31

8.         Seattle U                                 22

9.         San Jose State                        18

10.       Texas State                            14

Preseason All-WAC Teams

First Team

Raheem Appleby, So., G, Louisiana Tech

Chris Udofia, Jr., F, Denver

Kyle Barone, Sr., C, Idaho

Preston Medlin, Jr., G, Utah State

Daniel Mullings, So., G, New Mexico State

Second Team

Kevin Butler, Sr., F, UT Arlington

Jeromie Hill, Jr., F, UTSA

James Kinney, Sr., G, San Jose State

Kyisean Reed, Sr., F, Utah State

Tyrone Watson, Sr., F, New Mexico State

Player of the Year: Preston Medlin, Utah State

2012-13 Preseason Men's Basketball Media Poll

Rank   Teams (1st Place Votes)       Points

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

Preseason All-WAC Media Team

Raheem Appleby, So., G, Louisiana Tech

Kyle Barone, Sr., C, Idaho

Preston Medlin, Jr., G, Utah State

Daniel Mullings, So., G, New Mexico State

Chris Udofia, Jr., F, Denver

Preseason Player of the Year: Preston Medlin, Jr., G, Utah State

Newcomer of the Year: Jarred Shaw, Jr., F/C, Utah State



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