Croom puts team before individuals

HOOVER, Ala. — Being chosen Southeastern Conference Coach of the Year last season has not given Mississippi State coach Sylvester Croom the big head.

He said Mississippi State has established rules to keep that from happening.
Only one year removed from Mississippi State’s first winning season and bowl victory since 2000, Croom won’t allow anyone in the program to develop a selfish attitude about any success on the field and it starts with him.
“Any time anybody does anything that seems to have another agenda or tries to elevate themselves above the team, then they are going to be called on that,” Croom said during Southeastern Conference Football Media Days on Wednesday. “That’s me, coaches, anybody. Nobody in our program is bigger than Mississippi State. It’s not about an individual. It’s about Mississippi State. That’s the way we are. That’s the way we always will be.”
As much as finishing with an 8-5 record and defeating Central Florida 10-3 in the AutoZone Liberty Bowl was an enjoyable experience for the Bulldogs, Croom has let the squad know that it shouldn’t stop there.
“He knows we did a good job last year, but he does not want us to dwell on it or be satisfied with that,” said Mississippi State senior linebacker Jamar Chaney. “He’s going to preach that we need to do better.”

cdispatch.com
7/24/08