Here’s some Earth-Shattering Breaking News of Monumental Proportions for you: Less than 24 hours after his team’s horrendous 45-0 loss to Mississippi in the “most lopsided Egg Bowl in 37 years”, Sylvester Croom is stepping down from his head coaching position at Mississippi State. Guess Mississippi State fans can take something positive out of the loss.
(C’mon, Sylvester! Turn that frown upside-down!)
Croom, who five years ago got inducted into the race relations history books by becoming the SEC’s first black head football coach, leaves behind him a legacy of, well, not being very good. Let’s take a look at his five-year reign after the jump.
His first three years were middling enough, never getting past the 3-win plateau, but last season the team seemed to finally take a turn in the right direction. An 8-5 year gave Mississippi State its first bowl appearance since 2000, a 10-3 Liberty Bowl win over Central Florida.
But this year, the wheels fell back off and the team finished 4-8, including a horrible 2-6 record in SEC play. And that, folks, frankly wasn’t going to cut it.
But let’s see what the man himself has to say about it. From SPORTS ILLUSTRATED:
“Five years ago, Mississippi State gave me the unprecedented opportunity to be a head football coach in the Southeastern Conference and to build a program based upon a strong foundation,” Croom said in a statement.
“We have tried to build a program the right way that can compete for conference championships. I believe the foundation has been set for those goals to be reached under the leadership of someone else, and it was my decision to resign.”
The SUN HERALD also has this interesting tidbit on who the school is looking at to fill the vacancy:
Mississippi State appears to have a successor in mind. Tommy Bowden, who resigned from Clemson mid-season, also coached at Tulane. Bowden left Clemson in October.
One reference Bowden probably isn’t going to use on his resume: Clemson QB Cullen Harper, who said Bowden “deserved” his fate as a mid-season resignee. You’ll know more about this story when we do.