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Paul Pasqualoni to UConn is Bad News for Syracuse Recruiting

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Former head coach of the Orange Paul Pasqualoni has been hired at UConn, meaning the Big East recruiting battles just got more daunting. Just as The Fizz was rejoicing over all of the coaching changes in the Big East last week, now the carousel has stopped and Coach P has gotten off holding the brass ring good for one free ride at the University of Connecticut.

The man that led the Orange from 1991-2004 with just one losing season has taken the head coaching job in Storrs and this does not bode well for Doug Marrone.

Consider that during his tenure, Pasqualoni was responsible for names such as: Donovan McNabb of Chicago, Dwight Freeney of Bloomfield, CT, Keith Bulluck of New City, NY, Donovin Darius of Camden, NJ, Tebucky Jones of New Britain, CT, Rob Konrad of Rochester, NY, and Marvin Harrison of Philadelphia.

Between all of those players, just a handful from his tenure, there are three Super Bowl rings and 21 Pro Bowl appearances.

Now tell me you’re not worried about him poaching players from the region.

Pasqualoni is a native of Chesire, CT and has innumerable ties to the northeast. He coached at Southern Connecticut from 1976-1982, and then went to be the athletic director at Western Connecticut State from 1982-1986 before heading to SU. Donnie Webb wrote not too long ago in The Post Standard about Coach P’s love of the region saying, “His family has a well-known farm in Cheshire. He and George DeLeone spoke with almost mystical awe about pizza at Sally’s in New Haven. I think P still has his beach home in Rhode Island. Between the pizza and beach house, going home might sound great.”

Not every body thinks so. Everyone has a place where the sun doesn’t shine, and everyone’s also got an opinion. Syracuse.com commenter “slim1h2o” comically prophesized: (sic’d)

“Discussing the possiblities that coach P going back to college to coach is akin to discussing the possiblities that George Washington will come back from the dead to lead country back to freedom, again.

I’ll bethcha he stays in the pro’s and doesn’t look back at the college level…….”

Wanna show us where you keep your map with the crosshairs on it?

This hire should worry every coach in the conference. Pasqualoni left, but not on his terms. Jake Crouthamel told it to our friend Bud Poliquin.

“Paul was fired. That’s the bottom line. He was fired. He’s going to have to compete against Pitt. He’s going to have to compete against West Virginia. He’s going to have to compete against all those schools. But is it going to be more of an emotional kind of thing when he lines up against Syracuse? Of course.”

This can only leave Daryl Gross and Nancy Cantor saying, “OH MY GOD! IS THAT…PAUL PASQUALONI’S MUSIC?”

Just when they thought he was gone for good.

Since Pasqualoni’s gone to the NFL, you know he’s got to have some more tricks up his sleeve. We’ll hope he stole more from the Wade Philips playbook rather than the Tony Sparano one, though.

The Fizz has no doubt that Coach P will recruit, and recruit well. The question becomes how much better can Doug Marrone do his job? Brandon Reddish is in the bag. Now how about that Ishaq kid.

(Mike Couzens’ columns, his “Fizzy” observations and his freshly-written on-line commentaries appear virtually every day on orangefizz.net His work can also be regularly found on the doors and walls of bathroom stalls. Additionally, he can be heard every week on the FizzCast. If you’d like to contact him, his phone number is probably on those very same bathroom stall doors.)

Posted: Mike Couzens

The Fizz is owned, edited and operated by Damon Amendolara. D.A. is an ’01 Syracuse graduate from the Newhouse School with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.

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