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Besides their obvious love of basketball, the 14 men and the coach of Western Kentucky University's Hilltopper squad are brought together by a spirituality that transcends individual religious beliefs.

Seven different faiths are represented among the team members, who gather before each game for prayer. First, they express the "Team Affirmation" that all have agreed on, and that includes a request for safety for both teams during the game. Then they each have a moment for their own prayer or private thoughts.

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On the sports beat
September 17, 2001
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