Cliff Notes 2006-07
The JUSN takes you inside the JU men's basketball program with "Cliff Notes" - where the staff at the JUSN will answer your questions as well as provide insight into the upcoming season.
Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: - Oct. 17, 2006 - Welcome to the 2006-07 edition of "Cliff Notes" - the official blog of the JU men's basketball program.

We will be taking questions from fans throughout the season as well as providing insight, analysis and notes from the JU men's basketball program.

Feel free to use the form above to submit a question that we will get to as soon as possible.

Now, for a recap of the first weekend of practice...The Dolphins hit the practice floor for the first time last Friday and have been hard at work ever since.

It's almost like watching a new team out there with all of the new faces on the floor. There are six freshmen working to get a spot in the lineup - and all of them bring something different and special to the team.

Coach Warren and his staff have done a great job of working the players during their individual workouts to prepare them for the season.

I'm really excited to watch this team grow throughout the season as they gain experience with each passing day.

Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Oct. 24, 2006 Today we get our first question to Coach Warren as well an update on how practice is going thus far.

Maxim Afinogenov (Amherst): Oct. 24, 2006 - Last year you ran a lot of flex in the half court. Will you be changing your half court offense now that you will have several new players in the line-up?
Cliff Warren, JU Head Coach: Maxim, thanks for the question. We will make some adjustments to our offense based on personnel but we will run some form of the flex.

The energy level of practice has been very high. All of our Freshmen are starting to understand how hard they need to play.

Thanks for reading our blog. I look forward to more questions, so keep them coming.

Chris Drury (Kenmore): What advantages will playing in the downtown Arena have for the Men's Basketball Program and for Jacksonville University? Good Luck Coach!
Cliff Warren, JU Head Coach: Chris, thanks for the question.

Moving our games to the Arena is a great boost to our program as we have seen an increase in fan support from both our students and the community, allowing the city to embrace us as its own.

We've also seen progress in recruiting, because the really good high school players want to play in a big-time arena and it doesn't get much bigger than ours.

Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Well, we're five days away from the season starting on Sunday against Savannah State and I think everyone is ready to get going.

The preseason practices have been going well of late, as Coach Warren and his staff continue to work with the young players and get them in sync with the returnees.

The great thing about the young players is the plays they can make. Each one of them brings something special to the table and capable of some incredible things.

But, we also have to remember that they are young and that they will make some mistakes from inexperience. I know this will drive the coaching staff crazy throughout the season. From what I've seen so far, the young players are learning from their mistakes and will only get better with experience.

It's going to be a lot of fun to watch this team develop as the season goes along, starting Sunday at Savannah.

Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Nov. 12 - 10:30 a.m.- We're just a few hours away from the season opening on the road at Savannah State and it looks to be an exciting season.

The starting lineup for JU today will probably feature at least one freshman, but the key is going to be the five on the floor in the last three minutes of the game.

In talking with Coach Warren throughout the preseason, he's not as concerned about who starts, but who finishes.

Today's game will be a good test for this young team as to how well they've come together during the preseason. From what I've seen in practice so far, the older guys have demonstrated solid leadership skills and have taken the younger guys under their wing - which is obviously what you want in your program.

For those of you not making the trip to Savannah today, you can follow the game on the radio, via ESPN 1460-AM, or here at JUDolphins.com.

Barry, Coach and I will be back after the game with some post game comments and analysis.

Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Nov. 14 - 10:26 p.m. - Sorry for the delay since the last post, it's very hectic getting ready for tonight's home opener at the Arena.

What a night! We had a good crowd come out to support the program along with 17 former Dolphins that have helped give this program such a treasured tradition. Thanks to all of them for coming out to tonight's game and supporting the guys.

The game saw the promise of the youth along with some of their inexperience (along with a dose of some cold shooting at the free throw line).

The guys came out, played hard and picked up a hard earned and well deserved win.

Now, with a 1-1 record, the Dolphins head to Gainesville to face the defending national champion Florida Gators and one of our favorite JU alums - Mike DiRocco of the Florida Times-Union who is the beat writer for the Gators.

Thursday should be a lot of fun and we'll get Coach Warren's thoughts on the first two games tomorrow.

Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Nov. 16 - 9:55 p.m. First, let's get this out of the way - there's a reason why Florida is the #1 team in the country and they showed that tonight.

But, the second half belonged to JU. The youngsters put up a strong effort in the second half and it paid off as JU outscored the defending national champs over the final 20 minutes, 41-34.

The guys are going to take tomorrow off and get ready for our next home game, coming up on Wednesday at the Arena at Noon.

Cliff Warren, JU Head Coach: Nov. 16 - PostgameI was very encouraged by the second half. We just talked to our guys at halftime about playing hard regardless of the score. I do have a lot of young players, a lot of reshmen and a lot of sophomores. When we get in an atmosphere like this, I wanted them to play as hard as they could and as smart as they could for the entire game. I didn't want them to look up at the score at the beginning, middle or end of the game.

I just wanted them to play as hard as they could and work on the things that we had practiced.

I was very encouraged by the second half and by the last 6-to-10 minutes because we executed out of bounds plays and secondary breaks. We tried to take a couple of charges and dove on the floor for loose balls. That was encouraging to me and my staff because it let us know that we weren't going to quit, regardless of who we are playing.

Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Nov. 22 - 2:58 p.m. - Another win for the Dolphins comes as a big confidence booster as JU played well for the entire 40 minutes.

This was a great outing as five guys scored in double figures - led by Tyrone Curnell and Evan Jefferson.

Evan had been looking to get his shot in the first few games, but had struggled as he missed his first nine shots.

But today, Evan was red-hot, hitting four 3-pointers on his way to a new career high.

Curnell played well and under control, scoring 18 points and getting eight rebounds while only committing three fouls (which had been plaguing him in the first three games).

Now, an evening of rest a day of thanks tomorrow and then it's time to focus on South Carolina State for Saturday.

Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Nov. 25 - 9:56 a.m.- Another game day as the Dolphins face South Carolina State tonight at 7 p.m.

This starts a very difficult stretch of the schedule for the Dolphins - playing four games in seven days, including two on the road in Atlantic Sun Conference play.

But, to get us ready to play on the road in conference, JU will head south to Orlando to face in-state rival UCF on Monday.

This week will be a big learning week for the youngsters as they will learn first hand that the intensity in a non-conference game goes up a bit when you jump into conference play.

Stay tuned for more after tonight's game where we'll have feedback from Coach Warren.

Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Nov. 25 - 11:20 p.m. - JU picked up a big win tonight, getting 52 points in the second half as the Dolphins really turned the tempo up.

The full court press did its job in creating turnovers and it seemed to take South Carolina State out of their rhythm.

That defensive effort was aided by some clutch free throw shooting. Not just clutch, but money in the back shooting.

JU hit 37-of-42 from the free throw line, going 24-of-26 in the second half...not too shabby.

Sunday will be a travel day as we get ready to face in-state rival UCF on Monday in a real test for these young Dolphins. It will be interesting to see how they handle a tough road game against a very good team.