The Buffalo Bills officially announced Doug Marrone as their new head coach Monday at a media conference in Buffalo, where he'll take over for a recently fired Chan Gailey. The Bills new president, and East Syracuse native, Russ Brandon , proudly introduced Marrone as the best guy to lead the organization in the right direction.
"We wanted to identify top talent to lead this organization to where all of our fans and stakeholders deserve to be," said Brandon. "And that's back to a championship contender. We believe we did just that."
"I can't tell you how excited I am to be the head football coach," said Marrone. "I can't tell you how excited I am for me and my family to move up here. We're looking forward to it. I'm excited about working with the people in this organization, but I'm especially excited about working with the players."
Marrone and the Bills worked all day on Sunday to finalize the deal to bring him to Buffalo. He'll take over a team that has missed the playoffs for 13 straight seasons, a challenge similar to the one he took on when he was hired with the Orange four years ago.
"I'm excited to get back to work," said Marrone. "As soon as we're done here we're going right to work. It's a lot of responsibility, I feel I'm the best person for this job."
"Our firm belief is organizations win championships, individuals do not, " said Brandon. "We promised to leave no stane unturned in leading this franchise and creating a new lagacy that our fans will be proud of into the future."
Marrone was a 3-year letterman at Syracuse University before he was drafted by the Los Angeles Raiders in the 6th round of the 1986 NFL draft and spent five years in the NLF with various teams. Marrone returned to SU in 1991 to finish his degree.
The Orange had finished last in the Big East for four straight years when Marrone took over as head coach in 2009. He changed the culture of the team and leaves with a 25-25 record, including two 8-5 seasons and two Pinstripe Bowl victories. Marrone has been criticized by some Syracuse fans for leaving the program he claimed to have such a passion for.
"I had said that Syracuse was my dream job, and I meant that when I said it," said Marrone to begin Monday's media conference. "Having the opportunity to restore Syracuse football made my dream a reality."
Marrone, of course, is no stranger to NFL coaching, having served as the offensive coordinator for the New Orleans Saints from 2006 to 2008, and as offensive line coach for the New York Jets from 2002 to 2005.
Syracuse University Director of Athletics Dr. Daryl Gross said in a statement, ??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. 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.??Chancellor Nancy Cantor and Richard L. Thompson, Chairman of the SU Board of Trustees, said in a release, "We congratulate Coach Marrone on having this opportunity to become a head coach at the highest level. 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."