Pasqualoni bids farewell

One day after he was fired as head coach of Syracuse football, Paul Pasqualoni remained upbeat about his future and the future of Syracuse.

In 14 seasons head coach of the Orange football program, he amassed a 107-59-1 record, including six bowl victories in nine postseason games.

"I can't thank the people here enough, I can't thank the people in the community enough," Pasqualoni said. "There are so many great people in the community here who have been so great to me and so great to my wife."

The move came as somewhat of a shock because earlier in December, former athletics director Jake Crouthamel said Pasqualoni would be returning for a 15th season. But newly hired AD Daryl Gross made the decision to look for a new coach.

Still, Pasqualoni harped on only the positives.

"I have had an opportunity here to be around some great people and coach some great kids," Pasqualoni said. "I've always had tremendous respect for this place. Coach (Dick) Mac (MacPherson) gave me the opportunity to come here to be an assistant coach. It was kind of like a dream come true."

Unfortunately, the dream ended with some recent struggles. Since 2002, Syracuse has gone 16-20 and the Orange was beaten badly in the Champs Sports Bowl by Georgia Tech, 51-14.

Pasqualoni said he would like to continue coaching, although he hasn't decided what job he'd like to pursue. But, in what may have been his final act as a coach at Syracuse, offered the following advice to his players.

"Work hard," he said. "When the new staff comes in, do it the right way. I really believe that Syracuse has a chance to compete just like we have every year. It's been the goal every year. I don't see why it would be any different next year. I think the kids will take the bull by the horns and go."

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