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Syracuse football will begin preseason training with a walkthrough on Thursday

Syracuse University football will continue preparation for a fall season by holding its first walkthrough Thursday, kicking off its six-week preseason training schedule.

The walkthroughs are the most proactive step to date in college football’s march toward a fall season and will bring together dozens of players for non-contact, on-field work.

They also mark the first time SU’s coaches will get to work directly with players on the field since early March, when the coronavirus pandemic emptied college campuses.

The walkthroughs mark the start of the six-week preseason schedule approved by the NCAA on June 17. Since then, a cloud of pessimism has hovered over the sport as the logistical challenges of pulling off a season amid a once-in-a-century pandemic continue to mount.

Training will get underway despite no promise the season will kick off Labor Day weekend.

The ACC is expected by the end of the month to announce its plans for fall sports, including football. That could answer looming questions about a uniform, conference-wide testing protocol and reveal plans for a reconfigured schedule.

Until then, Syracuse will proceed as though it is starting its season Sept. 4 at Boston College.