TUSCALOOSA, Alabama (Ticker) -- Kenneth Darby and Alabama's defense ruined Sylvester Croom's homecoming.
Darby rushed for 200 yards and a touchdown and the Crimson Tide defense allowed only 12 first downs in a 30-14 victory over Southeastern Conference rival Mississippi State.
Croom, who is in his first season as Mississippi State's coach, played for the Crimson Tide from 1972-1974 and coached in Tuscaloosa from 1976 through 1986.
It appeared that Croom, the SEC's first black head coach, might get the happy homecoming he was looking for early on as Jerious Norwood scored on a 50-yard run just under two minutes into the game.
But Alabama (6-3, 3-3 SEC West) scored 17 points in the second quarter to take the lead for good as Tyrone Prothro and Darby each had TD runs and Brian Bostick added a 24-yard field goal.
Mississippi State (3-6, 2-4 West) pulled within 17-14 when Omarr Conner hit Tee Milons with a 28-yard TD pass early in the third quarter but the Bulldogs got no closer against the nation's top-ranked defense.
Bostick kicked field goals of 34 and 47 yards and Spencer Pennington tossed a four-yard TD pass to LeRon McClain to cap the scoring.