WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 14, 2009
Men's basketball set to face UNF on Thursday
There’s an old saying that you should toss out the record books with rivalry games.

On Thursday, the JU men’s basketball team will have to put that out of its mind as the Dolphins (6-8, 5-1 A-Sun) put their share of first place in the Atlantic Sun Conference on the line Thursday against rival UNF (3-13, 1-5 A-Sun) on the Ospreys home floor.

Tipoff for the first meeting in this season’s SunTrust River City Rubmle is set for 7:45 p.m. The game will be broadcast on 1010XL, with Barry Milligan calling the play-by-play.

After a 0-5 start to the season against one of the toughest schedules in the country, the Dolphins have won six of their last nine – including their current three-game winning streak.

“From the beginning of the season, we have talked about getting better each day,” said JU head coach Cliff Warren. “Despite a slow start, our guys have stayed the course and now it is paying off when it matters the most in conference play.

“While we have been playing well lately, we know that UNF is a well-coached team that has some talented players. They are going to be fired up for this game and we have to bring our best effort on Thursday.”

Jacksonville has seen a scoring outburst of late, putting up 80 points or more in four of the last five games – with 79 in the one that didn’t reach that plateau.

Aiding the high-scoring outburst is the diversity of how JU has scored.

On Sunday against Kennesaw State, the JU bench provided a season-best 28 points while the Dolphins hit just two 3-pointers. Against East Tennessee State, JU hit 12 3-pointers and had six players score in double figures.

The balanced scoring attack has three of JU’s starting five averaging double figures in points in A-Sun play, with two others averaging just more than nine per game.

With the diversity in scoring, the Dolphins have blossomed to move into the thick of the A-Sun title hunt.

“While we’re happy with where we at right now, we know that they don’t give out championships in January,” Warren said. “We’ve got a lot of basketball left to play and have a lot of room for improvement.”

JU FANS SET TO “GO GREEN”: JU fans making the trip to the UNF Arena on Thursday are asked to “Go Green,” and not for the environment, but to the support the Dolphins in the doubleheader against the Ospreys. The women’s team opens the doubleheader at 5:30 p.m.