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Michigan State's Mel Tucker, Xavier Henderson talk LSU rumors

Michigan State's Mel Tucker and Xavier Henderson addressed recent reports of LSU's interest in the Spartans' head coach

With a Top 10 showdown against archrival Michigan just five days away, Michigan State coach Mel Tucker was asked about recent reports of his name being attached to LSU's head coaching search.

“My focus is on the upcoming game versus the school down the road," Tucker said at his Monday press conference. "That’s where my concentration and my focus is, and I really appreciate you understanding that.

LSU recently announced that the school and current head coach Ed Orgeron had mutally agreed to part ways following the 2021 season.

Naturally, upon that announcement, rumors began swirling about potential coaching candidates to fill the vacancy. Names included in those rumors included Tucker, Texas A&M's Jimbo Fisher, Oklahoma's Lincoln Riley, Louisiana's Billy Napier and several others.

While the college football landscape is abuzz with rumors concerning the upcoming new regime in Baton Rouge, that talk hasn't made it's way into Michigan State's locker room, according to Spartan senior Xavier Henderson.

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“[Coach Mel Tucker] hasn’t really said anything specific towards us, but I haven’t heard one dude in the locker room say anything about it," Henderson said.

While Henderson acknowledged that he had heard the rumors, it wasn't something that he dwelled on for long.

"I saw it, and I took it with a grain of salt," the senior safety said. "Because that’s for [Mel Tucker]. He’s not worried about it right now, obviously. He’s worried about this game and his focus is on our preparation today and tomorrow. So, I wouldn’t think about it too much.”

As the No. 8 Spartans prepare to host their in-state rival, Tucker and his players emphasized the importance of blocking out the noise, the hype and the distractions.

"The most important voices are the voices inside of our building," Tucker said. "We need to eliminate distractions and focus on what truly matters."