Thursday, July 28, 2005

Sylvester Croom, Mississippi State and Alabama

I was briefly listening to Sylvester Croom's Media Day press conference today on ESPNews. To say the least, I was very impressed. After taking over a program that Jackie Sherrill (another crooked coach, see Lou Holtz below) brought to prominence and then left in a state of devastation, Croom appears to have the Miss State program headed towards recovery. The Bulldogs crowing victory in their 3-8 2004 season came when they upset Florida in Starkville, the game that finally cost Ron Zook his job. I don't see a great season on the horizon for Croom and Miss State but after a getting a nice recruiting haul this past year, the future is beginning to brighten. This is still a project but I would expect to see Miss State at least in the hunt for a bowl game by 2007.

Now for Alabama. Why didn't they hire Sly Croom? He had just as good, if not a better resume as Mike Shula. Obviously Bama has far superior talent to Mississippi State and I fully believe that Croom could have the Tide further along than Shula does. Injuries, especially Brodie Croyle's, crippled the team last season but they lost some games they shouldn't have, specifically the South Carolina game. Croom played for Bear Bryant and coached at Alabama. He has NFL experience. I think Shula will do a fine job at Bama but he is another in a long line of curious coach hirings by Bama since the end of the Bear Bryant era.


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