Home NCAA REPORT: Michigan State Planning To Fire HC Mel Tucker Over Alleged Sexual Scandal

REPORT: Michigan State Planning To Fire HC Mel Tucker Over Alleged Sexual Scandal

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REPORT: Michigan State Planning To Fire HC Mel Tucker Over Alleged Sexual Scandal
(Credit: Nic Antaya / Getty Images)

Michigan State has informed head coach Mel Tucker of its “intent to terminate” his contract for cause, citing a “body of undisputed evidence of misconduct that warrants termination.”

The university delivered the notice in a five-page letter from athletic director Alan Haller, outlining what it views as “unprofessional and unethical behavior.”

Tucker, who had been suspended without pay following sexual harassment allegations, now faces potential termination unless he can “present sufficient reasons to dispute” the grounds for his dismissal within the next seven days.

The allegations against Tucker came to light when sexual assault awareness speaker Brenda Tracy filed a sexual misconduct complaint against him in December 2022.

Tracy claimed that Tucker made unwelcome advances after she was hired to speak to the Spartans football team about sexual misconduct and her personal experience as a rape survivor.

Furthermore, she asserted that Tucker masturbated without her consent during a phone call in April 2022. Tucker did admit to the act but stated that it occurred within the context of a consensual intimate relationship.

Tracy later revealed that Tucker postponed and eventually canceled a speaking engagement at the university after she raised concerns about his conduct. Due to her ongoing professional relationship with the athletic department, Tracy was able to file a claim under the school’s sexual misconduct policy.

In the letter sent to Tucker and his agent, Haller cited Tucker’s admission to commenting on Tracy’s body, making frequent flirtatious comments, and masturbating while on the phone with her as violations of his contract and grounds for termination.

Additionally, Tucker’s combative public statement, issued through his attorney last Monday, in which he referred to a pending hearing about sexual harassment claims as a “sham,” was considered another breach of his contract.

Haller argued that Tucker’s actions violated the “moral turpitude” clause of his contract and damaged the school’s public image. He emphasized the severity of the situation, especially since Tracy was contracted by the university to educate student-athletes on preventing inappropriate sexual misconduct.

Despite the termination process, the university’s hearing to determine whether Tucker violated the relationship violence and sexual misconduct policy at Michigan State is set to proceed on October 5th and 6th.

Tracy initially filed her sexual harassment claim in December 2022, leading to the hiring of an outside investigator by Michigan State. This investigator recommended a hearing after concluding the investigation in late July.

Haller announced Tucker’s suspension on Sunday, September 10th, less than 24 hours after the allegations against him became public.

Tracy and her attorney, who had initially intended to keep her story private until after the October hearing, felt compelled to share their account after learning that someone at the university had leaked her name to a reporter.

It’s safe to assume that Tucker, who signed a 10-year $95 million contract in 2021, won’t go down without a fight.

There will surely be more to come from this story. Stay tuned…

 

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