Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Dolphins Shoot for .500; FIU Next on 2-5 JU's List

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Dolphins Shoot for .500; FIU Next on 2-5 JU's List

Article excerpt

Byline: Teneshia L. Wright, Times-Union sports writer

Five days after rallying for its first victory in more than a month, Jacksonville University hopes it's ready for prime time.

The Dolphins (2-5) play Florida International, a first-year Division I-AA scholarship team, at 8 p.m. today. The game will be televised live on Sunshine Network, JU's first TV appearance since its inaugural game against Davidson in 1998.

The game was originally scheduled for Saturday but was moved to accommodate TV.

"I think it'll be exciting for our guys to play a TV game at night, and our players will be emotionally ready to play," Dolphins coach Steve Gilbert said.

The Dolphins, with a freshmen-laden roster, won at Charleston Southern (S.C.) 24-21 last Saturday, their first-ever win against a I-AA scholarship opponent. With three games remaining, JU still can finish at .500.

"It'll definitely give us younger guys a lot of confidence, closing out the season with a bunch of wins and sending the [10] seniors out the right way, and [a win on TV] will help with the recruiting process," said JU quarterback Mike Sturgill, one of the team's 13 freshmen in starting or backup roles. "More and more people will want to come here and be part of a winning program."

FIU (3-5) will be JU's third opponent in a 12-day span and the last in a month of road games for the Dolphins.

Gilbert said he isn't concerned about the short span between games. The Dolphins practiced in shoulder pads Monday and Tuesday, and ran through some plays in T-shirts and shorts yesterday before leaving for Miami. They will have a walk-through this morning at FIU Community Stadium.

"FIU is doing exactly the same thing. They played Saturday, so I think it's a wash. Their short week is the same as ours," Gilbert said. "If they had a week off prior to it, I think it would be an advantage. …

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