Following the publication of a USA Today piece alleging he sexually harassed sexual assault victims advocate Brenda Tracy, Michigan State head coach Mel Tucker has been suspended without pay in what an almost sure first step toward firing him with cause.
A whole bunch of gross stuff came to light in just a day: the actual details of Tucker's misconduct (just assume everything in this includes the word "alleged," OK?), the inconsistencies in his story, and even questioning the veracity of Tracy’s original trauma:
Tucker is almost surely fired, as Brett McMurphy tried to scoop today, but MSU will do the due diligence it should've done this summer, rather than hope it wouldn't come to light. Then, more than likely, he's gone. Longtime Michigan State assistant Harlon Barnett will lead the team in the short-term, with noted good guy Mark Dantonio back in an “unspecified” role.
Preceding all this, as well, Larry Nassar survivors served legal papers to the MSU Board of Trustees at their Friday meeting.
There are a whole lot of things left to suss out, but barring something unexpected, Michigan State will fire Tucker. Then, as noted a thousand places elsewhere, Michigan State can “get out” of the balance of Tucker’s 10-year, $95 million contract without paying him a dime.
Left unsaid there, of course, is that this smells like almost as convenient an “out” for Michigan State boosters as it does actually doing the right thing. Let’s hope that’s untrue and, regardless the direction of the program, Michigan State would have done—allegedly—the right thing.
Of course, as the Northwestern scandal this summer tells us...we shouldn’t hold our breath.
This is a breaking story and may be updated as necessary.