Jacksonville Football Opens 2016 Season at Liberty

Jacksonville Football Opens 2016 Season at Liberty


Game-1 Jacksonville University (0-0) vs. Liberty University (0-1) | Sept 10, 2016 | Williams Stadium (19,200) | Lynchburg, Va. | 7 P.M. | @JU_Football | #JUvsLU

Dolphin Calls

TV: ESPN3 (http://es.pn/2bVQXB)

Radio: 1010 AM and online at http://mixlr.com/judolphins (Scott Manze & Nolan Alexander) with a 6:45 pregame show

Live Stats: www.liberty.edu/flames

Quote Board

"It will be a great atmosphere and is a great opportunity for us to grow as a football team. Liberty is a challenge for us and it will be a hostile environment. We want to eliminate any silly mistakes, win the turnover battle, and play well in the kicking game."- Head Coach Ian Shields

"We are excited for the game. Our senior class has played in big games before at Delaware (twice, in 2013 and 2015) and we look forward to getting out there and doing our thing." - Redshirt-Senior Justin Horton


  • Jacksonville enters its 19th season and first under new Head Coach Ian Shields
  • The Dolphins return two Preseason All-@PFLNews players in seniors Ulysses Bryant and Grady Redding
  • Ulysses Bryant is 13 yards away from moving into second place on JU's all-time rushing total
  • Grady Redding returns as JU's leading tackler. The senior has posted consecutive 100+ -tackle seasons
  • The Dolphins added 50 newcomers, including 46 freshmen
  • JU loses 16 players that earned First Team, Second Team, or Honorable Mention All-PFL in 2015
  • This is the 11th consecutive year JU opens its season on the road. JU is 4-6 in that span.
  • JU is 7-11 overall in season openers, winning last year at Delaware, 20-14
  • Shields is 3-1 as a head coach in lid-lifters
  • Saturday is JU's latest season opener since 9/17/05, when the Dolphins lost at Charleston Southern

#JUvsLU Series

Saturday marks the first meeting in this series. Jacksonville is 5-9 all-time against football members of the Big South, while Liberty is 6-4 all-time against current PFL programs. All 10 of Liberty's games versus current PFL foes came before the PFL's inception in 1993.

U.S.S. Ulysses

  • Senior A-back Ulysses Bryant returns to carry the running back group in his fourth season as a starter
  • Not only a threat toting the rock in rushing attempts, Bryant has shown a knack for making plays on the receiving end. Last year, he owned team game-highs in rushing attempts (22 vs. Stetson) and receiving touchdowns (2 vs. Edward Waters)

Defense is Gradyful

  • Senior middle linebacker Grady Redding returns to lead the Dolphin defense after posting consecutive seasons of over 100 tackles
  • Has also been named First Team All-PFL in those seasons
  • His 2015 season-high was 16 tackles at Campbell
  • Had six games of double-digit tackles

Behind Enemy Lines

Liberty enters Saturday's tilt 0-1 after falling to Virginia Tech on Sept. 3 in Blacksburg, Va. The Flames are led by fifth-year coach Turner Gill, who has previously led Buffalo and Kansas of the FBS, and the Liberty home-opener will be Gill's 50th game as the Flames Head Coach. Last season, the Flames went 6-5, which marked the end of a streak that saw Gill lead the Flames to at least a share of the Big South title since his 2012 arrival. Liberty placed four members on the Preseason All-Big South squad. The Flames were chosen to finish second in the conference behind 2015 champion Charleston Southern.

Up Next

Jacksonville returns to the Bold City to open the home portion of its 2016 schedule with a night kickoff against Edward Waters on Sept. 17. The 7.p.m. tilt marks the return of the Jacksonville Classic. Tickets are on-sale now at JUTickets.com.