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Michigan State hires Colorado’s Mel Tucker as head football coach

Tucker reportedly signs 5-year deal worth $5 million per year

EAST LANSING, Mich. – Michigan State has hired former Colorado head coach Mel Tucker to lead its football program, signing him to a reported five-year deal worth $5 million per season.

Tucker originally announced he would stay with Colorado despite Michigan State’s interest, but after MSU’s top choice, Luke Fickell, decided to remain at Cincinnati, the Spartans revisited Tucker. This time, he agreed to take the job.

Colorado head coach Mel Tucker watches during the first half of an Oct. 25, 2019, NCAA college football game in Boulder, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)
Colorado head coach Mel Tucker watches during the first half of an Oct. 25, 2019, NCAA college football game in Boulder, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File) (Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

He was head coach at Colorado for one season, going 5-7.

Tucker is familiar with East Lansing. He was a graduate assistant under Nick Saban in the late 1990s.

The feeling around the Michigan State campus is one of relief. The Spartans landed someone qualified despite the difficult timing of Mark Dantonio stepping down from a position he held for 13 seasons.

Michigan State’s Board of Trustees met at 5 p.m. Wednesday to approve the new contract.

The coaching search reached a breakneck pace after Dantonio stepped down. It took just eight days, with candidates coming and going so fast fans could hardly keep up.

Fans have mixed reactions, but they are warming up to Tucker quickly. He’s no stranger to Michigan State or those on the search committee.

You can watch Jason Colthorp’s full story in the video posted above.


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