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Syracuse Football: Orange Still Not Ready For Season

Syracuse football head coach Doug Marrone doesn't think his team is where they need to be with the home opener against Northwestern looming on Sept. 1.

"I don't think a coach ever says, 'We're exactly where we want to be or where we should be,'" Marrone said Wednesday night, emphasizing that conditioning was a concern.

"We're a ways away from being a team that can go out there and compete the way we all would like to compete. There's still a competition with some groups. I was wishing that it would separate itself better. Within the next couple of days, we'll make those decisions ... and move on from there and start getting ready for the upcoming season."

Starting quarterback Ryan Nassib agrees with Marrone that the team would not be ready to play the Wildcats right now.

"It's a whole 'nother year in the system," Nassib said. "We've got some guys stepping up, good competition. I think we got better. We're not ready to step up and play Northwestern yet. We still have some things to get down, but I think we're getting there. When the time comes, hopefully, we'll be ready."

The Orange may have to rely on Nassib's arm even more than they did last season after losing senior and 1,000 yard rusher Antwon Bailey to the NFL. However, Nassib did set the SU records for single-season completions (259) and passing yards (2,685) last season. He also tied the school's single-season record with 22 touchdown passes.

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