Playing a grueling schedule of six-mini games in a span of roughly 19 hours last weekend at the Mullens Juco Jamboree in Dallas wasn't all a bed of roses for the Jacksonville Jaguar basketball team, but the court experience should go a long way in helping to solidify the team, according to head coach Jody Bailey.
“This was time well spent for us,” Bailey said. “We took out lumps in some of the games, but I am excited about where we are and the direction that we are heading. Our team grew and improved from game to game and that was really neat to see.”
On Friday evening JC played a trio of teams from NJCAA Region 5 — Howard College, Clarendon College and New Mexico Junior College — and then returned to the gym early (8:30 a.m.) Saturday morning to take on New Mexico Military, Coffeyville (Kan.) and Garden City (Kan.).
“We were the only school to play six games; most played three,” Bailey said. “I designed it that way because we have a lot of new kids and the guys need the experience and we need to see who can do what in what situations, as well as try to establish our rotations. Also, it put our kids on the court more so that they could be seen by a greater number of (four-year school) coaches.
“So in that sense, these scrummages were ideal for us. I think we got to see who needs to work on what and what players will click out on the court when they play together.”
The Jags, who feature a dozen new players this season, have three scrimmages scheduled for Saturday at Cedar Valley College in Lancaster.
The JC men are scheduled to open the regular season at 6 p.m. on Nov. 1 by taking on Midland College in Plano.
The Jags will play at the Curtis Carroll Fieldhouse for the first time this season on Nov. 18 when they entertain the Northwestern (La.) St. JV team at 7 p.m.