SUNDAY, AUGUST 26, 2007
JUSN Weekly Chat
 JUSN
Join JUDolphins.com editor Joel Lamp for this week's chat as the fall season gets underway with football facing Bethune-Cookman, women's soccer and volleyball both at home and men's soccer opening on the road.
Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Hello everyone, we've got a lot of questions to get to in the next few minutes, so continue to fire them in.

This week is hectic as school starts, but the buzz around campus today is great. It's amazing how alive the campus is when school is in session.

This week, our fall sports hit the fields running. Football opens its season on Saturday while the men's and women's soccer teams start on Friday.

The volleyball team is already three matches into their season, opening up with three tough losses at the Orange & Green Challenge in Miami.

Now...drum roll please...on to your questions.


David (Jacksonville): What sport do you think has the best chance to open up the 2007 year with a win?
Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Great question David. I had hoped that the volleyball team was going to snag a win in Miami over the weekend, but they faced three really good teams down there and improved each match, so there is a silver lining - especially with such a young team.

As for who will get the first win...either volleyball or women's soccer. Both teams open with difficult teams, but they also have the talent to compete.


Lyndon (Jacksonville): Joel, Will Coach Bell be releasing a depth chart this week ?
Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Lyndon...thanks for the question. Yes, the depth chart is finalized for this week's game and will be posted on the website later today.

There aren't many surprises, although we are really banged up right now. We've got 16 guys on the injury report for this week.

The biggest change on the depth chart will be Robson Noel moving from cornerback to free safety and Jason Wood backing him up.

The coaching staff is really high on Robson's performance so far and the move to free safety may enhance his play making ability.


Amanda - Plant City: What's the realistic projection for a new football stadium. Has funding been secured? Will the 2008 Dolphins be playing in it?
Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Thanks for the question Amanda.

For those of you who don't know, JU is in the process of a capital campaign to build some facilities on campus - namely a new football stadium.

Director of athletics Alan Verlander and Coach Bell are working hand-in-hand on this project from a fund raising standpoint.

Once funding is secured, you will see a major announcement about it and plans for the stadium.


David, Tampa: What is the coaches expectation on the returning players contribution to the team? Now that they have arrived on campus.
Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: I think the coaches expect these guys to come in ready to go.

Most, if not all, of the guys who are joining the team now went through spring practice and have a good idea of the system that the coaches want to run.

There are going to chances for these players to showcase their ability - they just have to be ready because at any moment, their number could be called to perform.


Mancy, Jacksonville: What posistion are the coaches expected to get challenged against BCC?
Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Mancy, that is a good question, thanks for joining us today.

I think if it was our starting lineup against their lineup, we would be able to compete.

The difference is the depth - what our backups and their backups do when they are in the game.

In football, that is usually the biggest difference and determins so many ball games.

Having said that, I've been impressed with how our second string guys have responded when they are thrust into action during the scrimamges.

But Saturday is going to be completely different from scrimmage.


Opoku, Virginia: Are the coaches satisfied with the secondary preparation and level of play right now?
Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Opoku, thanks for writing in today.

I would say that the secondary is one of the areas that the coaching staff figures will make a lot of big plays.

With Robson Noel moving over to free safety and Wiedner Maxime starting at corner, the Dolphins have a lot of experience and depth now as Jason Wood is backing up Robson.

The secondary knows that are going to have to make plays for this team to be successful.


OP: How do our special teams look as we open up at Bethune Cookman?
Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: OP...that's a really good question and is brings up one of the biggest question marks for the Dolphins.

It's hard to simulate special teams in practice and in scrimmages, but I think we're going to be OK.

We've got a great punt returner in Nate Conner. Nate and Greg Louissaint are very solid kick returners as well.

The questions come about which foot the ball will be coming off of.

The starting place kicker has been a battle all through camp. Jamie Martin (better known as "Specs") has shown a strong leg and been quite consistent. Michael Zacco, a recent addition from Middle Tennessee State, also has a strong leg. Donovan Curry and Josh Hostetler have also been in the mix.

The punting position has a question mark, but it's fading awway as it looks like Donovan Curry will handle those duties this year.


Bob (Stark): How do you think the football team will match up with the speed of Bethune this weekend?
Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Our final question of the day comes from Bob - thanks for joining us.

There is an old saying that speed kills. Well, the Dolphins seem to be prepared to stop the Bethune-Cookman attack.

The biggest question is can they? I really like how they have adjusted to Bethune's unique offensive system.

It's a triple option offense that features a powerful passing attack. Each player has a lot of responsibilities to cover when they are on the field.

How they perform may well decide Saturday's game.

Joel Lamp, JUDolphins.com Editor: Thanks for the question everyone and its been great chatting with you this afternoon.

I can't wait for Saturday to get here so I can drive down for the game. It's an exciting time to be a Dolphin!

I'll talk to you again next week.