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Michigan State football loses assistant coach on defense

This is an unexpected development...

In a surprising development, Michigan State defensive line coach Ron Burton announced his intentions to depart from Mel Tucker's coaching staff in East Lansing.

Burton did not disclose his next destination, and given his statement its unclear how and where the defensive line coach will continue his career.

This news comes just one day after Michigan State officially announced the hiring of Brandon Jordan, who will serve as an on-field assistant for the Spartans as a pass rush specialist. As of now, it is unclear if these two developments are related in any way.

Burton was hired to coach defensive line by former Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio in 2013. When Tucker was hired in 2020, the current head coach convinced Burton to remain in East Lansing, even though Indiana was courting the defensive line coach at the time.

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“I would like to thank Coach Mark Dantonio and Coach Mel Tucker for the opportunity to be the Defensive Line Coach at Michigan State,” Burton said in his post. “For nearly a decade, I’ve had the privilege to coach some of the finest young men in front of one of football’s best fan bases." 

In his nine seasons in East Lansing, Burton helped develop four defensive lineman who would be selected in the NFL Draft — William Gholston (2013), Shilique Calhoun (2016), Malik McDowell (2017) and Kenny Willekes (2020).

“As I look for new opportunities, I wanted to let you know that East Lansing and Michigan State will always hold a special place in my heart," Burton wrote. "I can’t wait to see what the future holds.”

With this departure, Mel Tucker and Michigan State will have three new position coaches for the 2022 season.