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Air Force freshman undeterred by injury

Air Force suffered a double whammy this offseason when it learned that center Sammy Schafer would miss the entire year as would his projected backup, freshman Ethan Michael.

Michael tore an anterior cruciate ligament, but coach Jeff Reynolds told the Denver Post that the 6-foot-8 forward isn't that letting the injury get in the way of his duties at school.

Michael suffered the injury early in basic cadet training. Instead of going home and feeling sorry for himself, Reynolds said Michael insisted on participating in the survival training portion of BCT. "He was in Jacks Valley crawling around in the mud for two weeks."

Now that's toughness.

Air Force will have to carry on as well, and it doesn't help that the Falcons are projected to finish last in the Mountain West Conference.

"He was such a versatile player," Reynolds said on media day. "Not only was he good on the offensive end, he was extremely good on the defensive end, where he could go out and guard anybody. We have a couple of other skilled guys we're going to try at that spot, but because they're young they're going to have be thrown to the dogs, and in this league that's not easy."