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Michigan State Trustee: School President Isn't Holding Up New Mel Tucker Deal

As Mel Tucker and Michigan State football continue to rack up wins, numerous rumors have centered on the second-year coach. The former SEC coordinator has been connected to the opening at LSU, which has prompted discussion about a potential contract extension at MSU.

On Tuesday, local radio host Rico Beard pointed the finger at Michigan State president Samuel Stanley as the main reason why Tucker does not have a new contract yet. MSU alumna Brianna Scott, a school trustee since 2019, took to Twitter to shoot that idea down on Wednesday.

"Believe me, WE want Coach Tucker to stay, and this is a collective effort between the BOT and President Stanley to retain Coach Tucker!" she said, directly refuting Beard's comments.

Tucker took over the Spartans program late in the 2020 offseason, after the resignation of longtime coach Mark Dantonio. He spent the previous season as the coach at Colorado, after stints on staff at Alabama and Georgia. 

After a 2–5 season in 2020, Michigan State is 9–1 and No. 7 in the latest College Football Playoff rankings. A win at Ohio State on Saturday afternoon would put the team in control of the Big Ten and could put Michigan State back into the top four of the CFP rankings.

During Tuesday's The Valenti Show w/ Rico on 97.1 The Ticket, Beard reported that Michigan State alumnus Mat Ishbia, president and CEO of United Wholesale Mortgage, and another wealthy booster offered up money to retain Tucker, with "everybody on board" including Tucker and the Board of Trustees. 

"Everybody's on board with this except for one person. . . it appears to be that there's a bit of a power struggle. One person is holding this whole thing up," Beard said. "It sounds like the president is not. I don't know if he wasn't involved in this enough, it sounds like he's holding up this process."

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On Wednesday afternoon, the Detroit Free Press confirmed a report by the "Inside the Locker Room" podcast that Michigan State "is preparing a historic $95 million, 10-year contract" that would make him one of the highest-paid coaches in college football.  Only Alabama's Nick Saban would make more in terms of average annual value. 

Tucker is making over $5.6 million this season under his current deal, per USA Today

USA Today confirmed Ishbia and Steve St. Andre, founder of Shift Digital, as the donors behind the offer. 

The reported offer would make Tucker the highest-paid Black coach in American sports, ahead of Stanford's David Shaw.

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