Michigan State’s Mel Tucker 13th-Best Head Coach in Big Ten

McLain Moberg

Mel Tucker has been behind since he arrived in East Lansing. 

After being hired by Michigan State University following the retirement of Mark Dantonio, he immediately hit the recruiting trail and went from zero recruits in April for the 2021 class to 12 before three-star cornerback Gabe Nealy decommitted.

His new coaching staff lost out on a traditional spring and their annual Green-White Game due to the coronavirus. 

The NCAA implemented the recruiting dead period, which has since been extended through the end of August.

Additionally, the Big Ten announced a 10-game conference-only schedule, which was released August 5th. 

The entire MSU football team quarantined for a 14-day period after two staffers and one student-athlete tested positive for coronavirus. 

Michigan State was finally able to hit the practice field on Friday (Aug. 7); however, according to Mel Tucker the first four sessions will be modified due to the layoff they experienced. 

Now, it's being reported the Big Ten voted to cancel their season and plans to make an official announcement on Tuesday, August 11. 

Needless to say it hasn't been easy for Tucker and the Spartans. 

A few of these circumstances went into Athlon Sports' 13th overall ranking of the new head coach.

"Mark Dantonio's late retirement put Michigan State into a difficult spot, and the program paid big money (over $5 million a season) to lure Tucker to East Lansing. Tucker takes over at Michigan State after spending just one year as the head coach at Colorado," said Steve Lassan. "The Buffaloes went 5-7 under Tucker, who took over the job after three years as Georgia's defensive coordinator (2016-18) under Kirby Smart. Tucker also has been an assistant at LSU (2000), Ohio State (2001-04)."

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