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Michigan hockey tabbed as CCHA favorite in preseason media poll

Michigan edged both Western Michigan and Notre Dame to claim the top spot in the CCHA preseason media poll.

Gregory Shamus - Getty Images

Despite being topped by rival Notre Dame in the coaches' poll, Red Berenson's Michigan Wolverines earned 50 out of 87 first-place votes to claim the No. 1 overall spot in the CCHA preseason media poll released on Wednesday.

The Wolverines picked up exactly twice as many votes as Western Michigan, the second-ranked team heading into the season, according to the media. The No. 2 Broncos won the CCHA Tournament last season and were given a significant amount of respect en route to picking up 25 out of the 87 first-place votes. Checking in at No. 3 overall with nine first-place votes was Notre Dame, a team unanimously voted a preseason No. 1 by the conference's 11 coaches.

Hoping to reach their 23rd consecutive NCAA Tournament, the Wolverines will feature three Preseason All-Conference performers in junior defenseman Jon Merrill, sophomore forward Alex Guptill and senior defender Lee Moffie. As many as 20 letterwinners will also be back for Berenson's powerhouse program, including seven of the team's top 10 scorers from a year ago.