TUESDAY, DECEMBER 15, 2009
Dolphins return to the court against Bethune-Cookman on Wednesday
Whether it was the first five games that comprised the hardest schedule in the country or fall semester exams, the JU men’s basketball team has been facing a lot of tests.

With a 12-day layoff since their last game, the Dolphins (0-5) start a five-game road trip on Wednesday as they travel to face Bethune-Cookman (6-4). Tipoff is set for 7 p.m., with the game being broadcast on 1010XL. The Bono’s Barbecue Pregame Show airs at 6:45 p.m. with Barry Milligan and Artis Gilmore calling the action.

The Wildcats picked up a 66-64 win last year in Jacksonville as the Dolphins had one of their worst offensive performances of the season.

“We’ve made some progress in practice since exams have ended and the guys are ready to get out on the court again,” said JU head coach Cliff Warren. “Bethune has a good team that plays well at home. This is a good test to get us ready to open conference play on the road this weekend.”

The Dolphins are looking to get a consistent effort for 40 minutes, something that has evaded them thus far.

JU gave up two big runs late in each half in the loss at Florida and saw South Carolina’s Devan Downey score 17 of his game-high 34 points in the final five minutes to lead the Gamecocks to a 97-93 win.

But the offense hasn’t always been clicking for JU. In fact, the Dolphins have been held to less than 60 points twice this season – equaling last season’s total.

One of the bright spots so far for the Dolphins is winning the battle on the boards. JU has held an advantage on the glass in each of the last four games – including games against Florida, South Carolina and Cal.

DOLPHINS FACE HARDEST SCHEDULE: JU has never backed down from facing a tough schedule in the Cliff Warren era, but this year it has gone to a new level. The Dolphins have faced the toughest schedule in the country according to the Sagarin ratings, with four of the first five on the road. Before the second home game of the season on Jan. 2, JU will have played nine of its first 10 away from the First Coast.