Members of the media who cover Pac-12 Conference football think Oregon is still the team to beat, while the defending Rose Bowl champions Stanford was a close second choice.
The Ducks received 14 of the 25 first-place votes for the North Division, earning 139 points. The Cardinal received 11 first-place votes and 134 points.
The Pac-12 media poll has predicted the conference winner in 11 of the past 13 seasons, although they voted for USC last year.
Stanford coach David Shaw thinks his team could repeat as North Division champs since Oregon plays at Stanford Stadium this season.
The Cardinal won the Rose Bowl while using two starting quarterbacks during the season. Josh Nunes opened the year as the starter. Stanford was 7-2 in games he started, with losses coming in overtime at Norte Dame and by four points in Washington. He led the Cardinal to a win over then No. 2 USC.
Kevin Hogan took over for good during the Colorado game, leading the Cardinal to five consecutive wins, four of them over ranked opponents.
"The big thing for Kevin, we like to talk about taking it to the next level," Shaw said. "This year we are going to give him a whole bunch and see how much he can handle. We want to overload him for almost the entire training camp. We're going to push the limits and we'll see how he comes out of it."
Stanford lost 10 starters from last season's team, which went 12-2 and beat Wisconsin in the Rose Bowl. That doesn't seem to bother Shaw.
"This year we have gotten notoriety about a possible national championship chase," Shaw said. "But I like to say three years ago we were one game away, and two years ago we were one game away, and this past year we were less than 10 points away."
Stanford hosts the Ducks on Thursday, Nov. 7, at 6 p.m. ESPN will televise the contest.
The Pac-12 championship game will take place Saturday, Dec. 7, to be televised nationally by ESPN or ABC.
"This year we anticipate being in the hunt, and for the foreseeable future," he said. "That's how we recruited and that's how we approach it, and to say that this year is any different than any other, it's just not how we look at it."
The Pac-12 also announced new practice policies limiting its teams to two full-contact workouts per week during the regular season and spring ball. The rules also limit contact during two-a-day workouts in preseason camp.
The league's coaches helped to write the new practice rules, which are designed to keep players healthier and away from serious head injuries.