Mel Tucker’s Official Firing Triggers Critical Countdown For These 10 Spartans
Michigan State has officially fired Mel Tucker for cause, two-and-a-half weeks after a bombshell USA Today report made public a sexual misconduct investigation into him stemming from allegations of sexual harassment made by a prominent rape survivor and victim advocate.
MSU's position is that Tucker materially breached his contract, giving it cause to fire him without owing a cent of the nearly $80 million left on his contract.
MSU announced Tucker's firing in a press release Wednesday afternoon, more than a week after Tucker and his representation formally rebutted the university's notice of intent to fire him. Athletic director Alan Haller categorically dismissed Tucker's response in Wednesday's termination letter.
“Simply put, Mr. Tucker’s response does not provide any information that refutes or undermines the multiple grounds for termination for cause set forth in the notice,” Haller wrote. “Instead, his 25-page response, which includes a 12-page letter from his attorney and a 13-page ‘expert report,’ provides a litany of excuses for his inappropriate behavior while expressly admitting to the problematic conduct outlined in the notice.”
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Now attention shifts to MSU's players. Tucker's firing opens a 30-day transfer portal window for the entire roster. NCAA rules prohibit players from being able to play immediately for their new team following a transfer in these situations. There are 57 current Spartans who fit that bill, according to the Lansing State Journal.
MSU also has 27 players on scholarship who haven’t redshirted. Of those, 10 have already played in four games this season, meaning they cannot play a single down more in 2023 without rendering themselves ineligible to redshirt this year.
For those 10 Spartans, they must decide whether their future is in East Lansing or elsewhere before MSU takes the field at Iowa Saturday night.