Syracuse fans should continue to be patient with Orange head coach Doug Marrone as he rebuilds the SU football team, former Syracuse quarterback and current SNY football analyst Don McPherson said on The Juice on the Cuse podcast on Tuesday.
McPherson is certainly familiar with being successful on The Hill. In 1987, he won the Maxwell Award, the Davey O’Brien National Quarterback Award and was runner up in the Heisman Trophy voting.
In some ways, McPherson thinks Marrone was a victim of his own early success.
“(The winning season) was a little bit ahead of schedule,” McPherson said. “A lot of people thought, ‘Wow, he turned this around really quickly,’ when that happened.”
But the winning season masked some serious problems with the program in the wake of the Greg Robinson era.
“Greg Robinson really dismantled the recruiting base for Syracuse most notably in Long Island,” McPherson said. “There’s a lot of work to do in the system of getting the right players and getting the players you want when there’s more competition in the area because other problems have emerged and you have really ignored your region. Doug, in my opinion, his big challenge is some getting recruiting dominance back in the northeast, particularly in Long Island, New Jersey and in New England.”
Syracuse is now in year four of the Marrone era, which is generally viewed as a barometer year for college coaches, and Syracuse is coming off a disappointing 5-7 season. But McPherson believes that based on Robinson’s recruiting and the rise of other schools such as Rutgers and Connecticut, four years may not be enough time to judge Marrone.
“Everything is in fours,” McPherson said. “You go to high school for four years. You go to college for four years. You have a president for four years. Everything is in fours, and everyone thinks the world should be turned around in that time period and that’s just not the case. In college football, especially, you’ll see coaches get judged early.”
So what is the right amount of time to judge Marrone?
“I think it’s more six (years),” McPherson said. “If he’s still not producing winning teams in six years then you have to think that he’s not the right guy.”