Mississippi State football coach resigns

STARKVILLE, Miss., Nov. 29  -- Mississippi State football Coach Sylvester Croom resigned Saturday, one day after the Bulldogs ended their season with a 45-0 loss to Ole Miss.

Croom directed the Bulldogs to a 21-38 record, including 4-8 this season, in his five years at the helm.

"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. "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."

Mississippi State had just one winning season under Croom, an 8-5 finish last year that included a victory over UCF in the Liberty Bowl.

The former Alabama star was an assistant at his alma mater from 1977-86, then spent 17 seasons as an assistant in the NFL. He was the first African-American football coach in the Southeastern Conference. (UPI)