Sports

Sims starts and finishes, and gets plenty of help, as No. 2 Alabama holds off WVU, 33-23

  • Alabama quarterback Blake Sims (6) throws under pressure from West Virginia safety Karl Joseph (8) during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Aug. 30, 2014, in Atlanta.  (AP Photo/ Brynn Anderson)

    Alabama quarterback Blake Sims (6) throws under pressure from West Virginia safety Karl Joseph (8) during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Aug. 30, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/ Brynn Anderson)  (The Associated Press)

  • Alabama quarterback Blake Sims (6) scrambles away from West Virginia defensive lineman Kyle Rose (93) during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Aug. 30, 2014, in Atlanta.  (AP Photo/Bryn Anderson)

    Alabama quarterback Blake Sims (6) scrambles away from West Virginia defensive lineman Kyle Rose (93) during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Aug. 30, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Bryn Anderson)  (The Associated Press)

  • Alabama quarterback Blake Sims (6) tries to get away from West Virginia safety Karl Joseph (8) in the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Aug. 30, 2014, in Atlanta.  (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

    Alabama quarterback Blake Sims (6) tries to get away from West Virginia safety Karl Joseph (8) in the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Aug. 30, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)  (The Associated Press)

Blake Sims was good enough to finish his first start at quarterback for Alabama, getting plenty of help from Amari Cooper, T.J. Yeldon and Derrick Henry, and the second-ranked Crimson Tide held off West Virginia 33-23 Saturday.

Sims was 24-for-33 for 250 yards and added 42 running, playing the entire game. The fifth-year senior beat out Florida State transfer Jake Coker for the start. Tide coach Nick Saban had suggested both quarterbacks would play, but Sims never came out.

Yeldon (126 yards rushing and two touchdowns), Henry (113 yards rushing and a score) and Cooper (12 catches for 130 yards) provided plenty of support. Alabama needed all the offense it could get because West Virginia found plenty of soft spots in the Tide's D.

The Mountaineers' up-tempo spread gave Clint Trickett his pick of open receivers, and he took advantage with 365 yards passing.