Mel Tucker hired as new Michigan State head coach


After a long search, Michigan State football has found its new coach in Mel Tucker, the former Colorado coach, as first reported by The Athletic's Bruce Feldman and confirmed by The State News. The contract is not signed, and other leg work still needed to be completed early Wednesday morning. Tucker only spent the 2019 season with the Buffaloes, and he tweeted on Saturday that he would not be accepting the MSU job and instead would stay at CU for a second season. Prior to that, he served as defensive backs coach on Nick Saban's staff at Alabama. Tucker won a national championship with the Buckeyes in 2002. "I think Bret brings a great personality to the group, brings a great perspective on how he sees the game, he's coached the front for some time, he's coordinated defenses at a high level". He was tabbed as a Top 25 recruiter by in 2018.

Tucker, who will be officially introduced at a news conference later Wednesday, began his coaching career at Michigan State as a graduate assistant for Nick Saban in 1997. Tucker worked alongside Dantonio at Ohio State from 2001 to 2003 and held coordinator jobs at Ohio State and Georgia, before landing his first head-coaching opportunity at Colorado.

Dantonio spent 16 years as the Spartans' head coach, finishing his career there with a.641 win percentage and a 7-5 bowl record.

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A native of Cleveland, Tucker was a defensive back at Wisconsin (1990-94). He'll have his hands full coaching in the same division with Ohio State, Penn State and MI. He was the defensive coordinator for the Cleveland Browns in 2008 and the Jacksonville Jaguars (2009-2012).

Cincinnati's Luke Fickell, a former Ohio State defensive coordinator and interim head coach, pulled out of the running for the Michigan State job on Monday.

After several stints as an National Football League defensive coordinator, Tucker became an assistant at Alabama in 2015.