Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

AREA NOTEBOOK; JU's Line Gets Win, 'Wow' in Victory

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

AREA NOTEBOOK; JU's Line Gets Win, 'Wow' in Victory

Article excerpt

Byline: JASON SCHNEIDER

It didn't take long for running back Jerry Brant to realize that Jacksonville University's patchwork offensive line was going to do just fine against Valparaiso.

On the fourth play of the game, the Dolphins ran an inside trap, which Brant hit for a 36-yard gain.

"I was like, 'wow,' " Brant said. "The offensive line was on top of everything. Everybody was clicking. It was time."

Brant had a career-high 159 yards, and JU, ranked 10th in The Sports Network I-AA mid-major poll, rushed for a total of 239 yards behind a line missing All-American tackle Pat Rich, junior center Rusty Stiglitz and sophomore tackle Michael Aguilar.

The Dolphins won 34-17.

Against the Crusaders, JU shuffled the line and rotated eight offensive linemen. Only left guard David Locander stayed in his position.

Rich is expected to play against Davidson on Saturday, which should end the cycling lineup, but JU offensive coordinator Andy McCleod said he had no problem moving players around again if needed.

"We pride ourselves a lot on our offensive line in that we run a scheme," McCleod said. "There's a deductive-reasoning process that goes along with our plays, so as long as the kids understand the reasoning, they can move around easier within the scheme."

TRANSFER QUARTERBACKS THRIVE AT VALDOSTA STATE

Few coaches are able to successfully meld transfer quarterbacks into a system as Valdosta State coach Chris Hatcher is.

Hatcher is at it again.

He won the 2004 Division II national title with a transfer quarterback (Florida State transfer Fabian Walker) and coached Dusty Bonner to two Harlan Hill trophies (Heisman for Division II) after Bonner transferred from Kentucky. Hatcher is winning again with a transfer quarterback, Willie Copeland, who came from Fort Valley State. …

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