The Michigan State football program learned the fate on Sunday afternoon as embattled head coach Mel Tucker faces allegations of sexual misconduct. Tucker was reportedly under investigation for several months, dating back to claims of inappropriate behavior from sexual assault advocate Brenda Tracey.
The news broke after the Spartans drubbing of the Richmond Spiders on Saturday night, announcing that Tucker has involved in an investigation dating back to phone calls with Tracey. He was subsequently suspended from his role after everything went public, according to Pete Thamel of ESPN.
This is the second major scandal in the Big 10 this year, after Pat Fitzgerald was fired over the summer for permitting sexual misconduct in the Northwestern football locker room for years. Based on the details of this latest report, there was no chance that the school could not suspend Tucker amid the public backlash and validity of the source, and will explore options regarding retainment or termination.
Michigan State has also dealt with a very public and damaging scandal in the past, when the crimes of former athletic trainer Larry Nassar came to light, and the school spent hundreds of millions dealing with lawsuits in the fallout.
The Spartans will now move forward with their interim coach Harlon Bennett, and will have to deal with the legal ramifications of suspending and potentially firing the coach as Tucker is in the middle of 10-year, $95 million deal. They will host No. 8 ranked Washington next week at home, in a massive test for their assistant coach as they deal with the spotlight that will engulf the program.