Thursday, December 2, 2021

Report: Mel Tucker, Michigan State working toward historic 10-year $95 million contract extension

November 17, 2021
<p>Head Coach Mel Tucker during the game against Maryland on Nov. 13, 2021, at Spartan Stadium.</p>

Head Coach Mel Tucker during the game against Maryland on Nov. 13, 2021, at Spartan Stadium.

Photo by Lauren Snyder | The State News

Michigan State is preparing a 10-year, $95 million contract extension for Head Coach Mel Tucker to make him one of the highest-paid coaches in the country, according to a report from the Detroit Free Press.

Per the report, MSU alumni Mat Ishbia and Steve St. Andre will privately fund a donation that will cover the massive extension.

Ishiba is a 2003 Michigan State graduate and chairman and president and CEO of United Wholesale Mortgage. In February, he made a $32 million donation to the school to fund a new football building.

St. Andre is a 49-year-old MSU marketing graduate and founder of Shift Digital. He was previously the president and CEO of Ford Direct and helped create FordDirect.com

In a radio show with former MSU Board of Trustee member Brian Mosallam and MSU radio host Jason Strayhorn, Mosallam said that the contract was in the works, but Michigan State Athletics has yet to confirm the report.

Only one college football coach in the country, Alabama's Nick Saban, currently makes more ($9.753 million) than Tucker is set to make under his new contract. The contract would make Tucker the highest-paid Black coach in America, ahead of Stanford's David Shaw. It would also pay him more than 29 NFL head coaches and 29 NBA coaches.

Tucker spent just one season at Colorado before then-Athletic Director Bill Beekman hired Tucker in February 2020. He took the place of Mark Dantonio, who retired after 13 seasons as Michgan State's head coach, beginning a new era of MSU football.

The first year for Tucker in East Lansing was a rough one, not only having to battle the challenges that come with rebuilding a program, but having to start in the middle of the pandemic. The Spartans showed some flashes when they defeated Michigan and Northwestern, but finished the 2020 season with a 2-5 record accompanied with multiple blowout losses.

Tucker and his staff utilized the transfer portal this past offseason, bringing in impactful players such as junior running back Kenneth Walker III, junior linebacker Quavaris Crouch and senior offensive tackle Jarrett Horst and quickly catapulting Michigan State into Big Ten Championship contenders. New Athletic Director Alan Haller, who was hired in late August, had seen enough to be convinced that Tucker is the right guy for many years to come.

The fanbase is revitalized, embraced by the slogan "Tuck Comin'", and the players have bought into Tucker's strong culture. After rumors swirled that Tucker could be in the mix for the next LSU head coaching job, it appears Michigan State is trying to make sure that does not become a reality and that he remains a Spartans.

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