Coaches of the Western Collegiate Hockey Association are picking Minnesota to repeat as the regular-season champion.
The Gophers received 11 of 12 first-place votes in the annual Grand Forks Herald preseason coaches' poll. North Dakota, last year's WCHA playoff champion, got the other first-place vote and finished second in the poll.
The rest of the top five is Denver, St. Cloud State and Wisconsin. Minnesota-Duluth is sixth in the poll, followed by Colorado College, Nebraska Omaha, Michigan Tech, Minnesota-Mankato, Bemidji State and Alaska-Anchorage.
The Mavericks open the 2012-13 season October 12th in Kansas City against Army. UNO faces Lethbridge in an exhibition game Monday night at the CenturyLink Center.