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Winless Syracuse wary of FCS power Stony Brook

Associated Press Modified: September 14, 2012 at 9:37 am •  Published: September 14, 2012
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SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) — Syracuse coach Doug Marrone scowled at the thought of his Orange having a letdown against Stony Brook.

"How do you have a letdown when you haven't won a game?" Marrone said.

Coming off consecutive losses to Northwestern (42-41) and No. 2 Southern California (42-29) to start the season, Syracuse isn't likely to take Stony Brook (2-0) lightly. The Seawolves may play at the second level of Division I, but they're ranked No. 16 in the latest poll and are ready to test their mettle against the Orange on Saturday in the Carrier Dome.

"I think we're going to come out and play hard," said Stony Brook wideout Adrian Coxson, a transfer from Maryland. "Of course, everybody's expecting us to lose, but we have a chance. We've got very good players."

Syracuse has won its last 28 games against current members of the Football Championship Subdivision, formerly Division I-AA, a streak that dates to a 14-13 loss to Holy Cross in October 1958.

No cause for concern, right?

Not really.

"Sometimes, you have to watch yourself," Marrone said. "There comes an opponent that everybody's saying that you should beat because you've already shown that you are this type of team. That's when I think you have to be leery."

The Seawolves are 0-3 against FBS opponents, with two of the losses — to UTEP (31-24 in overtime) and Buffalo (35-7) — coming in the first two games of 2011 and the other in 2010 at South Florida (59-14).

"Certainly, we're going to be challenged," Stony Brook coach Chuck Priore said. "We've got to handle the adversity of playing away. We've got to handle the adversity of playing indoors from a noise perspective, and we're going to have to handle the speed of the game change. I think, physically, we match up OK. It comes down to the scholarships they have. Certainly, the depth is a concern. But we're excited about getting an idea of where this team falls as a program."

The Orange are 9-0 in the Carrier Dome against FCS foes and anxious to snap a long losing streak — seven straight — that dates to last season.

"We're still an 0-2 team, we're still looking for our first win," said Syracuse quarterback Ryan Nassib, second in the nation in per-game completions (37.5) and passing yards (802). "That's our main priority now, do whatever we can to win. Getting our first win proves to ourselves that we can do this."

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