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Volleyball’s Chunia Graves reshapes JU with new school fight song

From JU Athletics

JU volleyball redshirt freshman Chunia Graves has already changed the face of campus as we know it: She’s changed the JU Fight Song.

Last February, she was sitting in the stands at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena as the Dolphins men’s basketball team played Mercer. Graves heard the instrumental fight song for the first time and loved it.

She looked up the words to the song on her phone, but had trouble finding it. When she did find them, they didn’t match the melody all too well.

Graves, who fell in love with JU on her official visit, went on a mission to learn more about the song. She sought out two good sources on her journey in JU hoops legend Artis Gilmore and Vice President of University Relations Dr. Derek Hall.

“I approached Derek Hall and Artis Gilmore about it,” Graves said. “One day, I walked into their office and said ‘Hey, how old is our fight song?’ I wanted to know more about it. I went to look it up at Wikipedia to try and figure it (the song) out and I didn’t like the lyrics too much.”

Graves was able to learn that Al Rogers wrote the song back in 1971. She wanted to re-write the song to coincide with the new marching band she knew was coming. Her passion for the school and song showed and Gilmore supported Graves through the process.

“He was very, very excited,” Graves said. “He was behind me every step of the way. I really appreciated that because I showed up to his office in my practice gear. I said ‘Will you help me out, I want to change the fight song.’ He saw the sense of the pride that showed in me in trying to change the university. I wanted everyone to know I am proud to be a Dolphin.”

The song took one to two days to re-write for Graves, who only occasionally writes poetry. After showing it to Dr. Hall, she was able to work with the new band director, Chris Creswell.

See video of the new song below. To read the full story, visit http://www.judolphins.com/volleyball/news/276/16904/