Michigan State rallies to hire Colorado football coach Mel Tucker

Mel Tucker is the next Michigan State University head football coach. (image courtesy of Michigan State University)
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EAST LANSING (AP) (2/12/2020) - Michigan State has hired coach Mel Tucker away from Colorado to lead its football program.

The Buffaloes gave Tucker a shot to run a program a little more than a year ago after he was Georgia's defensive coordinator. They were 5-7 last season.

Tucker succeeds Mark Dantonio, the school's all-time winningest coach with a 114-57 record, including three Big Ten championships, a Rose Bowl win and a Cotton Bowl victory. Dantonio retired eight days ago.

Tucker has ties to Michigan State, where he was on Nick Saban's staff two decades ago. He went on to work in the NFL and for major programs in college football.

Dantonio plans to remain at Michigan State in a special projects role and helping former college athletes transition into their lives after college.

ABC12 News staff contributed to this report