Tens are wild for former Gophers forward Rick Rickert, who said Saturday he expects to play his 10th year of professional basketball next season in either in Japan or Europe.

"Played in almost 10 different countries, as well as probably 10 different states. Pretty crazy," Rickert, 29, said of his pro career.

Last season, Rickert averaged 14 points and 11 rebounds a game for Kyoto, Japan, in the BJ league.

. . .

It's safe to say that the Duluth Air Show will be once again be the largest air show in Minnesota this year, and for good reason. Muscling their way in, among other sleek and small aircraft, at the Air Show on September 22-23 will be several beefier aircraft.

Air Show attendees will have a unique opportunity to view five of the largest aircraft in the United States:

· The Lockheed P-3 Orion is a four-engine turboprop anti-submarine and maritime surveillance aircraft developed for the United States Navy and introduced in the 1960s.

· Fed Ex will have on display one of its Boeing 757 aircraft, Boeing's largest single-aisle passenger aircraft.

· The C-130 Hercules are older aircraft but have proven their worth as cargo and war planes in the skies during several conflicts, as well as humanitarian relief operations.

· The North American B-25 Mitchell is a medium bomber used widely by U.S. forces in World War II, serving in the famous "Doolittle Raid" against Japan in 1942, the United States' first strike against Japan after Pearl Harbor.

· The C-5 Galaxy cargo aircraft is aptly named as it is one of the largest aircraft in the world. This aircraft provides the U.S. Air Force with heavy intercontinental-range strategic airlift capability.

"I have flown on most of the Air Force cargo and re-fueling planes during my military career, but the C-5 was unique," said Dave Boe of the Duluth Air Show. "How that behemoth got into the air with all that weight, and its own size, is a mystery, but it did. It's a testament to its design and structure, and to its Air Force pilots."

Ryan Kern, president of the Duluth Air Show, says placing all these large aircraft will be a challenge, but it can be done.

"We have had our operations group working these types of logistics for more than 12 years, and we have managed to get things arranged rather well," said Kern. "The C-5 has been our biggest challenge to date, but we are confident it will fit -- barely."


Sources: Duluth Air Show. C-5 Galaxy. Published with permission, Duluth Air Show/US Air Force.

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