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ESPN Ranks Oregon Ducks No. 2 in Initial Pac-12 Power Rankings

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“Running back Royce Freeman is outstanding, the offensive line is quietly good and the receiving corps is definitely going to be a plus.”

Oregon State v Oregon Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images

The Worldwide Leader has released the first 2016 edition of its Pac-12 Power Rankings, placing the Oregon Ducks just outside the top spot.

Oregon got the No. 2 ranking, just behind Stanford and right in front of Washington and Washington State. The North division is clearly expected to be more competitive this season than the South.

Here’s what the network’s Kevin Gemmell had to say about the Ducks:

Much like the Cardinal, the Ducks warrant some benefit of the doubt, seeing as beside Stanford, they are the only other team to actually win a Pac-12 championship under the current setup. Running back Royce Freeman is outstanding, the offensive line is quietly good and the receiving corps is a definitely going to be a plus. Much of Oregon's success will hinge on the defense.

The full rankings are as follows.

  1. Stanford
  2. Oregon
  3. Washington
  4. Washington State
  5. UCLA
  6. USC
  7. Utah
  8. Arizona
  9. Cal
  10. Arizona State
  11. Colorado
  12. Oregon State