Doug Marrone, (6’5″, 269,) was a powerful drive blocking center for the Syracuse Orangemen who was prized for his versatility at playing any position on the line. At Syracuse he was a 3 year starter at tackle and was named co-offensive player of the Cherry Bowl in 1985.
Doug would be drafted in the 6th round of the 1986 draft by the then Los Angeles Raiders but would end up on the roster of the Miami Dolphins by 1987 playing in 4 games that season. In 1989 Doug would sign with the New Orleans Saints and play in one game that year.
In 1991 the WLAF would come calling, and the London Monarchs would draft Marrone in the 3rd round of the positional draft, where at this point he had bulked up to 302. The offense of the Monarchs would roll up huge numbers, and it would be partially because of Doug’s performance now at center, as the team only allowed 10 sacks in 10 games. At the conclusion of the inaugural season Doug would be named to the All-World League first team and also win World Bowl I. He’d return to the WLAF for 1992 but would be unseated for WLAF All world honors (by John Vitale, SA). After the numbers of the 1992 season failed to improve enough for the owners of the NFL, the league decided to reorganize.
Doug would hop into coaching coaching a variety of positions along the line starting at tight end with Cortland State in 1992. He’d then spend a season a piece at the United States Coast Guard Academy and Northeastern coaching offensive line. In 1995 Marrone would be hired to coach at Georgia Tech where he’d stay through 1999. This was followed by 2 more stints at Georgia (2000) and Tennessee (2001). Doug would receive valuable pro coaching experience, heading over to coach the line for the New York Jets, and then landing the offensive coordinator position in New Orleans in 2006. In 2008, Marrone would come full circle and was named head coach of his alma mater Syracuse. After a rough start in 2009, the Orangemen would rebound under his guidance finishing with an 8-5 record in 2010, and a victory in the Pinstripe Bowl.
It is always a pleasure to get a former WLAFer back and Doug was a real class act, sending me his autograph in 18 days, in a Syracuse envelope, returning my SASE, and thanking me for remembering him and allowing him to catch up with where many of his former London Monarch teammates were at.