Even Flyboys Can Jump

College basketball players usually get e-mail from adoring teenage girls or trash-talking students from a rival school. So how does Nick Welch, star player at the Air Force Academy, feel when alums in Iraq send notes that say his team inspires their squadrons? "It's a great honor," says Welch. "But we have it easy. I have much more respect for what they're doing."

Modesty is just one virtue of Air Force's surprising basketball team, which ended its season with a 22-6 record, ensuring it a postseason-tournament berth for the first time since 1962. Air Force hasn't even had a winning season...

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