THURSDAY, AUGUST 02, 2007
Men's basketball to face grueling schedule in 2007-08

Aug. 2, 2007

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Complete Schedule in PDF Format

Jacksonville University will face three top-25 programs, including two of last year's Final Four participants, three former conference rivals and a month-long December road trip as the Dolphins released their schedule on Thursday.

The Dolphins schedule is highlighted by three trips to top 25 teams, all within a week. JU will face Michigan State on Dec. 1, Florida on Dec. 3 and Georgetown on Dec. 9.

JU will also play a 16-game schedule in the Atlantic Sun Conference, playing Mercer, Kennesaw State, Stetson, UNF and Florida Gulf Coast twice. The Dolphins will travel to Lipscomb, Belmont and USC Upstate while hosting ETSU, Campbell and Gardner-Webb.

The Dolphins also will renew rivalries with Georgia State and Troy, two former A-Sun members, as well as South Alabama - a rival dating back to JU's days in the Sun Belt.

In the first year of a two-year deal, JU will host Georgia State and go to Troy this season.

"This is going to be a challenging schedule for our program," said JU head coach Cliff Warren. "We have a lot of young players that are going to be getting experience early in the season against some of the top teams in the country, which we hope will prepare them to be ready once we enter conference play in January."

After an exhibition game at Swisher Gym on Nov. 2, the Dolphins will open the season on Nov. 11 against Savannah State in the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena - which will serve as the Dolphins home court for the second consecutive season.

JU will then face South Carolina State on Nov. 14 before coming home to play Concordia (N.Y.) on Nov. 17.

The Dolphins will make a Thanksgiving road trip to UAB on Nov. 24 and return to face Georgia State on Nov. 28 at the Arena.

December will be a long road trip for the Dolphins as they are out of town the entire month. The month-long trip starts with Michigan State (Dec. 1), followed by Florida (Dec. 3), American (Dec. 7) and Georgetown (Dec. 9).

The Dolphins get a week to recuperate before their last pre-Christmas game at Troy (Ala.) on Dec. 17. JU returns to the court after Christmas at former Sun Belt rival South Alabama (Dec. 29).

JU jumps into conference play for the first time at home on Jan. 3 against Stetson, followed by Florida Gulf Coast on Jan. 5.

The Dolphins then hit the road for four straight games - at Kennesaw State (Jan. 10), at Mercer (Jan. 12), the final non-conference game of the season at Savannah State (Jan. 15) and wraps up the road trip at UNF (Jan. 19).

The Dolphins get their first A-Sun "Game of the Week" on Jan. 25 against East Tennessee State, which is followed by a road trip to USC Upstate on Jan. 27.

Jacksonville then gets five of the next seven games at home - starting with Campbell on Jan. 31. JU then faces Gardner-Webb at home (Feb. 2) before a road trip to Belmont (Feb. 7) and Lipscomb (Feb. 9).

The A-Sun "Game of the Week" returns to the Arena for the final time on Feb. 15 against UNF, followed by Mercer (Feb. 21) and Kennesaw State (Feb. 23).

The Dolphins wrap up the regular season at Florida Gulf Coast (Feb. 28) and at Stetson (March 1). JU will then head back to Nashville, Tenn., for the A-Sun Tournament hosted by Lipscomb.

Head coach Cliff Warren's third season sees the Dolphins return three starters from a year ago - all of which have earned A-Sun all-freshman team honors - junior Marcus Allen along with sophomores Ben Smith and Lehmon Colbert.