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Excitement, optimism running high to begin Preseason Camp for Syracuse Football

The Orange was back on the practice field to begin Preseason Camp, allowing the media to

At last, football has returned to Central New York.

The Syracuse University football team took to the practice field on Sunday evening, eager to prove the doubters wrong in 2017.

In case anyone is unaware, the Orange was picked to finish second-to-last in the ACC's Atlantic Division preseason standings, only in front of Boston College.

However, with 20 returning starters (the most in the ACC), the Orange may have something up its sleeve.

Syracuse head coach Dino Babers, along with senior linebacker Zaire Franklin and junior quarterback Eric Dungey, met with the media to mark the beginning of camp, detailing their goals for the next month ahead of the season opener in September.

"I'm excited," Babers proclaimed with a smile. "This is the start of 2017 for me. 2017 when the ball dropped? No, no, this is the start of 2017 right now. It's football season. Does anything else matter? I really want to see the guys go through and start with the little things. We talk about that stuff all the time, but it's going to show up. We need to line up right and we need to step right. And here's another thing -- the first thing I want to see the first two or three days -- I want to see the coaches come out of the dog on tunnel. I want them to be on top of them. We need to be on top of our game."

"I'm just excited for today, to be completely honest with you," Franklin explained. "I know we have a lot of people on the schedule that everybody wants to talk about, but I can't really see past training camp and really can't see past this helmet practice today."

"Like I said, just have a chip on your shoulder," Dungey admitted. "I'm looking around at the guys and I see a bunch of guys coming back. We've got some new guys coming in and are going to contribute. So, I'm excited for this team and what we can do."

Practice continues next week, as the media will be invited back to check in with more players on Wednesday.

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