Dolphins begin home stretch on Thursday

Jan. 29, 2008

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - While there are no championships given away in January, the JU men's basketball team is going to be sad to see the month come to a close.

After a disappointing 0-7 record in December, all on the road, the Dolphins have rebounded with a 7-1 mark thus far in January and begin the stretch run with five of the next seven games at home, starting with Thursday against Campbell.

In a year that saw the Dolphins play on the road for an entire month, this is the longest home stretch of the season.

Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena. The game will be broadcast on 1010XL, with Barry Milligan calling the play-by-play.

The Dolphins red-hot January has lifted them to the top of the Atlantic Sun Conference standings, sporting a 6-1 mark and a one-game lead in the standings. Predicted to finish fifth by the coaches, the Dolphins are one of the surprises of the league so far.

That 6-1 mark in conference play equals the best start ever to the conference schedule for the Dolphins, matching the 1986-87 team that started 6-1 in the old Sun Belt Conference.

"While we're off to a good start in conference, we can't rest on our laurels," said JU head coach Cliff Warren. "We've got to keep working hard and improving as a team because we haven't accomplished anything yet."

The surge by Jacksonville can be attributed to the increased level of team play. JU has put at least three players in double figures every game but one. To go along with that, JU has won the rebounding battle in every game but one as well.

"For us to be successful, everyone on the team has to contribute," Warren said. "We need everyone on the team to be focused at all times because your number could be called at any time."