As you know doubt have heard by now, Doug Marrone Sunday opted to leave his alma mater Syracuse to return to the NFL as head coach of the Buffalo Bills. In fact, as I typed this, Marrone was being introduced at a press conference in Orchard Park.
While Marrone is basking in the glow of his first head-coaching job at the professional level, the fact that the fourth-year coach left leaves a significant void for the Orange football program.
There has been no real concrete news as to a viable replacement for Marrone, although a search has already commenced. In that vein, the university released statements early Monday afternoon both congratulating the former coach on his new gig and vowing to maintain the momentum the football program has built heading into a new conference.
Here are the statements from, first, athletic director Daryl Gross and the university’s leadership, including chancellor Nancy Cantor:
“Doug has restored Syracuse football to its rightful place and we are appreciative of the foundation he has laid on and off the field for the future success of the program,” Gross said. “We wish him the absolute best in his opportunity in the NFL. We look forward to improving on our success, as we have great momentum heading into the ACC. We will put a head coach in place who will continue down the successful path we are on.”
“We congratulate Coach Marrone on having this opportunity to become a head coach at the highest level,” the statement attributed to the board’s chairman and the school’s chancellor. “Under his leadership, we have restored the rich, winning football tradition at Syracuse, and we wish him continued success as he moves to the National Football League.
“We are fully committed to continuing SU Football’s successful trajectory and the commitment, work ethic, integrity, and support for the personal and academic development of our student-athletes that Doug and his coaching staff embedded in the program. Moving forward, we have full confidence in Dr. Daryl Gross to find the right successor to build on this success.