Football reports for camp
The 2009 JU football team will meet for the first time on Thursday as 105 players report for preseason camp.

The Dolphins will open their practice schedule tomorrow with the freshmen practicing at 2:30 p.m. The veterans will start their first practice at 3:30 p.m.

“I’m excited to get the season started,” said JU head coach Kerwin Bell. “This group has a lot of potential to build on the success we had last season. Today is a rough day with paperwork and meetings, but I’m looking forward to getting on the field tomorrow to work on getting this season going.”

DOLPHINS PICKED TO CONTEND: The preseason publications are split on where the Dolphins will finish this season in the Pioneer Football League.

The Sports Network has the Dolphins picked to repeat as the PFL champions, with San Diego in second and Dayton in third.

Phil Steele’s Pigskin Preview has JU tied for second with Dayton behind San Diego. The Dolphins had five players named preseason first team all-conference by the publication, as well as five players receiving second team honors.

Running back Rudell Small was a first team selection on the offense, with defensive lineman Shaun Lewis and defensive back Jason Wood representing the defense. Kicker Donovan Curry and return specialist Elliott Finkley earned first team honors for special teams.

Quarterback Josh McGregor, offensive linemen Leonard Payton and Ian Osking were joined by defensive lineman Rolando Fines and linebacker Joseph Fennell on the second team.

TOP 25 OPPONENT AGAIN: Last year, JU faces the top-ranked team in the country when they faced Appalachian State in the second game of this season.

This year, the Dolphins will be put to the test against another top 25 team from the Southern Conference – Samford.

The Bulldogs are ranked 23rd in several preseason publications and are expected to be a contender in the Southern Conference.

“One of our goals in scheduling every year is to play a game against a high-caliber program that we can test ourselves,” Bell said. “Samford is a great program that has made a lot of progress and is where we want to be – a nationally ranked program.”