End of the (Short) Mel Tucker Era

February 16, 2020










Inside Mel Tucker’s Final CU Event: “We were hoodwinked”

From Sports Illustrated … At a Colorado donor event he organized Tuesday night, Tim Harrington expected the featured guest to be his normal self—fiery, intense, gregarious—but that wasn’t necessarily the case. In fact, Mel Tucker spoke at such a low pitch that the hum of a nearby mini fridge almost drowned him out. “The whole thing was surreal,” Harrington says during an interview with Sports Illustrated. “I know he knew exactly what he was doing the next day.”

Tucker’s final hours as Colorado’s head coach are becoming clearer, and while it’s not rare for college coaching transitions to have some bizarre elements, the situation that transpired this week in the Rocky Mountains is one of the strangest.

While working toward a deal Tuesday night to become Michigan State’s head coach, Tucker spoke to more than two dozen Colorado boosters and fans at a fundraising event at the Denver Country Club, soliciting their donations while expressing his commitment to the program. Sipping on his trademark Scotch and water, Tucker paraded through a reception of big-money Buff Club members in a plush, window-lined room, eventually delivering a speech and taking questions. He spoke about his passion for Colorado, described his reasons for accepting the job 14 months before and expressed excitement in the future, built around the high school players he had signed a week ago.

Tucker conveyed to supporters his “full intentions to be at CU,” says Bob Masten, a tight end for Colorado from 1969–71 and a Denver-based businessman who attended the event. In fact, when exiting the club, Masten told Tucker he was looking forward to seeing him again in a couple weeks at another donor gathering on Feb. 25. “Yeah,” Masten said Tucker told him, “that’d be great.”

Harrington, 62, spoke one-on-one with Tucker throughout the night. “The thing ended and I was talking to him and looking him in the eye,” says Harrington, a 62-year-old Denver native and Colorado graduate. “I swear to God after the event I said, ‘There is something going on.’ His eyes were not … it was almost like he wasn’t telling the truth. It was bizarre.”

An hour later, Tucker struck a deal with Michigan State to be its new coach.

“We were hoodwinked,” says Craig Poulter, 60, a longtime CU season ticketholder and Colorado native who was there Tuesday. “Mel misled us. I believed in him.”

Continue reading story here


February 15, 2020

Drew Litton sums it up for all of us … 







February 14, 2020

Dennis Dodd: No winners from Tucker move (except Tucker and his agent)

From CBS Sports … There were few winners this week when Mel Tucker bolted Colorado for Michigan State after only one season. The move was simply hard to justify for most everyone … except for the coach and his agent.

A national discussion was started again on several levels. Meanwhile, the high road took a holiday. Almost no one looks good. Here’s why:

Coaches can no longer question their players’ loyalty. Especially not now after Tucker not only left Colorado after a season but did so four days after tweeting that he was “committed” to CU.

What makes the departure doubly insulting for Colorado: Tucker in October had, in fact, played the loyalty card.

“There is no transfer portal in the real world,” he said.

Well, unless a coach transfers to Michigan State in order to double his salary.

In one sense, good for Tucker. We’d all take $5.4 million a year in a second. But please, coaches, stop lecturing us about the loyalty owed by players.

The Pac-12 is on the brink. Want to talk competitive imbalance? Michigan State basically bought out Tucker’s promise to remain at Colorado. And it did so because it could. A Big Ten school flexed. A Pac-12 counterpart winced. It’s as simple as that.

Colorado couldn’t afford to keep Tucker the same way only a handful of Pac-12 schools — if even that many — could actually afford to hire Urban Meyer or a coach like him. That points up a larger issue for a conference that finds itself at a historic low point in its athletic history.

According to the latest figures, Pac-12 schools make at least $17 million less annually than their Big Ten counterparts in media revenue ($50 million vs. $33 million).

That matters. Big time. Jon Wilner of the San Jose Mercury News has already calculated that each Big Ten school will make $139 million more than its Pac-12 counterpart over the next five years.

So, of course Michigan State was able to make Tucker an offer he couldn’t refuse. But it’s not just Big Ten money. Tucker made $2.4 million at Colorado. Alabama’s mere recruiting budget, according to a recent report, is $2.6 million.

The Pac-12’s current competitive disadvantage with the rest of the Power Five is real, and the gap is growing wider.

Continue reading story here


February 12, 2020

Rick George press conference quotes

Here is a link to the press conference to the press conference conducted this morning by CU athletic director Rick George.

Opening Statement
“As you know, Mel Tucker informed us that he is resigning as head football coach. We are obviously disappointed to see him leave; however, we are excited about the upward trajectory of our program. We are already at work identifying our next head coach to lead our program and our young men. I met with our players and coaching staff this morning. We reassured them that we will match their commitment and do everything in our power to hire a great, new head coach that they can all rally behind. We are confident the program is on the verge of competing at the highest level and has the resources and support in place to do so for a long time. I will be naming an interim head coach at some point this afternoon that will be able to keep track of our football team as we head into spring football.”

On The Process Of The Last Few Days
“On Saturday there was a lot of media information out there. Coach Tucker and I both tweeted out a statement on where we thought we were and that he was committed to this program. I spoke to Mel late last night and then I spoke to his agent and I was informed he had taken the Michigan State job.”

On If He Gave Permission For Michigan State To Speak With Tucker
“I was asked, formally, for permission to speak to coach. That is a courtesy that we extend to each other. You’d have to ask him if he spoke to them or not, but I am certain that he probably has.”

On If Tucker Was Truthful Throughout The Process
“Coach and I have a really strong relationship. We had a conversation on Saturday about his commitment to Colorado. I was comfortable with that. What transpired in the last 24 hours is disappointing. A coach is going to do what is best for him and his family. I support that. He made that decision and my focus now is moving forward with this program and where we are headed.”

On How He Got Word About Tucker Taking The MSU Job
“I got word through some different channels that were still conversation. I was out of the office the last two days. Immediately, I called one of my staff and asked to get a hold of Coach Tucker and when he was done that he and I would have a conversation and we had that.”

On His Message To Recruits
“My message to the recruits is, ‘This is an incredible football program and an incredible institution.’ I said 15 months ago when we were going to hire a coach that I understand the importance of hiring the next head coach. I have every indication and belief that our program is in a better position today than it was 14 months ago. We are going to go out and hire somebody that shares the same expectations that I do, that we are going to win a championship and that we can do that at Colorado with the resources we have.”

On Potential Candidates For Head Coach
“I am going to be open-minded to candidates that are out there. Certainly, I want somebody that shares my passion for this university. If that is somebody that has been here before that’s great. I want somebody that shares that passion about Colorado that I do and knowing that we can win a championship at all levels. I think we can do that at Colorado. We have done that before. We are in a much better position today than we were back then.”

On If He Feels Jolted
“I don’t feel jolted at all. My biggest concern is our student athletes. This isn’t about me at all. My job is to make sure that we hire somebody that has the same expectations that I do for our student athletes and for our program to be successful. Mel made a decision that was best for him and his family. I respect that. I am focused on what is ahead and what is ahead is us hiring a great head football coach that can be a great mentor and leader to our student athletes. That will be my focus over the next few days.”

On Potential Constraints On Resources
“I don’t see them as constraints. We know what resources we have. The coach that we bring in, just like Mel, knew what resources we had. Again, I am convinced that we can win a championship with the resources we have. Our donors have been incredible. Our alumni have been incredible in supporting our efforts of what we are doing for our student students in the areas of mental health, nutrition, this facility, and strength and conditioning.  We have five strength coaches just for football. We are doing a lot of really important things for that program because we know how important it is to CU.  We will keep investing in that to make sure that we get this program back to where it historically has been. We are committed to that and I know our chancellor is committed to that.”

On Discussing A Counter Offer For Tucker
“We had discussions about that last night.”

On The Process Of Finding A Head Coach
“It’s tricky. We want to make sure that before we make a decision on an interim that the coach wants to be here, is going to be here and how that plays out in the future. Having an interim, I think, is great to have in the short term but we are going to go out and find the best coach. It could be on this staff and it could be on a variety of other staffs. This has transpired fairly quickly but we are prepared and ready. We will see where it goes.”

On The Program
“I think the way we continue the trajectory that we have going is we have to bring good people in here. We have to give them the resources that they need to be successful.  I think we are doing that. I think we have a great program. We have incredible student athletes. This is a destination at Colorado. This is where we think people can lay down their roots. It is an incredible community. It is a great state. We play in a terrific conference. We just have to get the right person in here that is committed to the same things that I am and our staff is.”

On If He Feels Pressure
“Any pressure is self-imposed. The only pressure that I feel is what I am putting on myself. I know how important this hire is, just like it was 14 months ago. I’m ready for it. I have a good staff around me that is going to help me in doing that. When you are selling something like we are at Colorado, it is an incredible job and opportunity. We will go out and get the best person. I don’t have a timetable on it. I want to be efficient and effective but I also don’t want to hurry. I want to take the right steps. We will do that.”

On Tucker’s Commitment To Colorado
“I believe what Mel told me. I think we had a shared vision of where we wanted this program to go. You’d have to ask him that that question. I am committed to this program. We are going to go out and hire an incredible coach.”

On If Coaching Staff Will Follow Tucker To MSU
“This is happening so quickly I don’t think they know. Over the course of the next 24-48 hours I think you will probably see more of that. That is not going to slow down our progress and where we are headed.”

On If They Will Push Back Spring Ball
“I don’t anticipate us pushing spring ball back at all.”

On The Mood Of The Team
“I would probably say somber. They enjoyed playing for Coach Tucker. My message to them was, ‘We have an incredible opportunity here to do some really significant things. We need them to stick together, have confidence that we know what we are doing and where we are going. We are going to hire someone that they will appreciate, respect and want to play for. We will do that as quickly as we possibly can.'”

On His Conversation With Tucker
“We had a conversation about where he was and what he was contemplating. Beyond that, that is all I want to share.”

On His Thoughts On Tucker’s Decision
“This isn’t about me. It’s about our student athletes. I certainly have a lot of respect for Mel. He is a good man. I don’t have anything negative to say about our relationship. I think we had a strong relationship. He made a decision that I don’t personally like, but I respect. It is time to move on.”

On His Message To Parents Of Recruits
“What I would say to them is, ‘Our program is in a better position than it was 14 months ago. We are going to hire an incredible coach to lead their sons and coach their sons. Have patience. We are going to move as quickly as we can and are going to get a great football coach at Colorado.'”

On The Potential Of Being Asked For Releases From Recruiting Class
“That is certainly possible. What I would say is, ‘Have patience. We are going to move quickly and expeditiously. We are going to hire a great football coach.'”

On If They Can Compete Financially With Other Programs
“We will do what we need to do in that regard. Not everything is about money. I want somebody that wants to be here and shares the same commitment and passion that I do. We will work hard over the next few weeks to find that right person for the job.”

On If Tucker Addressed The Colorado Team
“He did not.”

On Help With The Coaching Search
“I won’t have a committee of people. Lance Carl and I did the last search. He oversees the football program. It will probably be the two of us. I know what I want in a coach and we will go out there and find that coach.”

(Here is a link to my “Committee of Two” interview with Lance Carl from last spring about the hiring of Mel Tucker) …

Chris Fowler weighs in as an analyst and as an alum

... Chris captures very well where many CU fans are today … 

Rick George issues statement

From CUBuffs.com … University of Colorado head football coach Mel Tucker has informed CU Athletic Director Rick George that he is resigning  his position, effective immediately. George issued this statement Wednesday morning:

“We are disappointed to see Coach Tucker leave,” George said. “We are excited about the upward trajectory of our football program and we’ll get to work immediately hiring the next head coach to build on our momentum and lead our young men. We’re confident this program is on the verge of competing at the highest level and has the resources and support in place to do so for a long time.”

The search process for a permanent replacement is already underway.

NOTE: Rick George will hold a press conference at 11:30 a.m. in the Champions Center (third floor, room 319).

Email from CUBuffs.com … As most of you are aware, Mel Tucker has informed Rick George that he is resigning. Rick met with the team and coaching staff promptly and efforts are underway to identify the next head football coach.

The support that our donors and season ticket holders have given over the last year has solidified the foundation for the future and we thank you for that.

Your continued support is critical as we stand Shoulder to Shoulder with our student-athletes at the University of Colorado, and continue to strive to compete at the highest levels.

Players were told nothing by Tucker: “We really don’t deserve this (stuff)”

From the Daily Camera … During the past 14 months, Colorado players and recruits have bought into the vision Mel Tucker had for the future of the program.

Late Tuesday night, many of those players were left wondering about their own futures as Bruce Feldman of The Athletic reported that Tucker is leaving the Buffaloes after just one year to become the head coach at Michigan State.

Although the report had not been confirmed by CU, it still left players stunned.

“I’m shocked. I really am,” safety Mark Perry, who will be a sophomore next season, said when reached by Buffzone.com. “A year ago, I trusted coach Tuck, thinking he’d be here for a while and I bought into the vision for not only me but the program.”

Reports of Michigan State’s interest in Tucker surfaced on Friday. While Tucker publicly stated multiple times that he was committed to CU, he remained on Michigan State’s radar. Tucker was out of town for donor events last weekend, but has been in Boulder this week.

As of late Tuesday, Perry said the players had not heard from Tucker throughout the process.

“Nothing at all,” he said. “It was suspect to me when he didn’t say anything to us about the speculation.”

Continue reading story here

Report: Michigan State upped the ante: Tucker’s salary to double

From The Athletic … Colorado coach Mel Tucker and Michigan State have agreed in principle to make him the new head football coach at MSU, people with knowledge of the matter told The Athletic on Tuesday night. After the 48-year-old Cleveland native turned down initial interest late last week, MSU power brokers came back repeatedly to Tucker’s reps with an offer that was impossible to ignore.

People with knowledge of Tucker’s deal with the Spartans said it doubles his Colorado coaching salary pool (which was $3.15 million in 2019), includes a substantial increase to the Michigan State strength and conditioning staff budget and program resources and will more than double Tucker’s Colorado salary, which is around $2.7 million.

On Feb. 7, while Tucker was on a Colorado donor tour, his name surfaced in a Detroit Free Press report that the Spartans planned to interview him for the Michigan State vacancy. Tucker discussed the initial MSU conversations with Colorado AD Rick George, according to people familiar with the matter.  Tucker’s tour was about raising funds for the Buffs program, so on Saturday he tried to quell speculation by telling Buffs donors that he was committed to doing his job there. On Monday, after Cincinnati’s Luke Fickell — a strong candidate for the MSU job — announced he was staying with the Bearcats, the Spartans circled back to Tucker’s reps with an offer not just for the head coach but for his staff and for the program that he felt he needed to compete for national titles.

“My understanding is that Coach Tucker was completely transparent with CU’s Rick George, from MSU’s first contact until their last push today,” a person with knowledge of the situation told The Athletic on Tuesday night.

The hiring of Tucker by Michigan State away from Colorado is another example that speaks to the widening gulf in resources between the SEC/Big Ten and the rest of college football thanks in large part to a growing revenue gap, a topic The Athletic addressed two weeks ago.

Continue reading here (subscription required) …

Report: Mel Tucker Leaving Colorado for Michigan State

Related … “Report: Mel Tucker leaving CU Buffs for Michigan State” … from the Daily Camera

From ESPN … Michigan State is set to hire Colorado’s Mel Tucker as its next football coach, sources told ESPN.

Tucker, one of several candidates to seemingly turn down Michigan State’s initial overtures, became the focus of the school’s search late Sunday and throughout Monday, sources said. On Saturday, he tweeted that he remained committed to Colorado after speaking with MSU about its coaching vacancy.

A source said Tucker was hesitant to leave Colorado after only one season as the Buffaloes’ coach and attended an event with Colorado donors on Monday in Denver. But Michigan State offered more resources, beyond just annual salary.

An official announcement could come later Wednesday. The Michigan State board of trustees has scheduled a special meeting for 3 p.m. ET Wednesday. Among the issues to discuss is “personnel action.”

The Athletic first reported MSU’s expected hire of Tucker.

The 48-year-old Tucker will replace Mark Dantonio, who announced his retirement last week after 13 seasons at Michigan State. Dantonio, 63, went 114-57 with the Spartans, winning or sharing three Big Ten championships and reaching the College Football Playoff in 2015. He left as Michigan State’s all-time winningest coach but also facing a lawsuit from former recruiting director Curtis Blackwell, who alleges that Dantonio committed multiple NCAA violations.

Michigan State interviewed Cincinnati coach Luke Fickell on Sunday, but Fickell decided early Monday to remain with the Bearcats. Pitt coach Pat Narduzzi, a longtime Michigan State assistant under Dantonio, also opted to remain in his job. San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh, another former MSU assistant, and Iowa State coach Matt Campbell also declined to pursue the Spartans job.

Tucker, a Cleveland native who played defensive back at Wisconsin, began his coaching career at Michigan State as a graduate assistant for Nick Saban in 1997. He was a defensive coordinator for three NFL teams and served as the Jacksonville Jaguars’ interim head coach in 2011, going 2-3. Tucker worked alongside Dantonio at Ohio State from 2001 to 2003 and held coordinator jobs at Ohio State and Georgia, before landing his first head-coaching opportunity at Colorado.

Tucker went 5-7 last season with the Buffaloes and last week finalized the nation’s No. 34 recruiting class, according to ESPN.



66 Replies to “End of the (Short) Mel Tucker Era”

  1. I thought this telling. As of three days ago, Mel was canning all staff at MSU. I saw a Tressel listed. Thought that interesting. As of today? Tressel staying on staff. Role tbd. Good lookin out, Mel.

    Go Buffs

  2. When Mel Tucker was first hired, I began following him on twitter. I was excited to see what recruits and assistant coaches he was corresponding with. As I was looking through all of the people he was following, I found it curious that he was following close to 3 dozen politicians and dedicated political media personalities. Not just two or three senators or congressmen, but dozens!

    It made me think that perhaps he had intentions to run for office some day here in Colorado, maybe after he had brought the buffs back to glory. I mean what CU football coach ever went over to Grand Junction and made an appearance on local TV. Then hopped in the car to ride over Red Mountain pass to go make an appearance in Durango?

    Then on tuesday it hit me. Mel Tucker is a politician in a football coaches clothing. He has zero qualms to tell the masses exactly what they want to hear. Truth and honesty are fairy tale concepts in politics and apparently in Mel Tuckers belief system.

    Whether he has moderate success or failure, I predict he will gone from MSU within 2 years. Off to con a whole new group of suckers.

  3. It’s going to be a little bit tougher for MT to recruit, recruits will question his honesty, remember Willie Taggart, didn’t work out so well for him at FSU. Still MT is set for life with a $30M contract even if he fails miserably at MSU.

  4. Stuart, be advised. A twitter post from 2020 recruit WR Brendan Rice dated 2/13/19 says that Michigan State followed him on Twitter. He said he doesn’t want to go to lil bro MSU. But, tell me that that doesn’t suggest that poaching is about to begin??

  5. My biggest problem with how this went down and that it’s is going to continue to happen in college football with the large gaps in revenue between conferences. But lately I’ve been really frustrated with the product the networks are putting out too.

    In order to pay out these outrages amounts of money to the larger conferences they are scheduling games too close together with no pregames or post games shows in between in order to fit more games in to make up the revenue; now we have to watch the end of some other game running late because of the game before them too, instead of the beginning of our game. OR you need a $140-$200 cable subscription to get all the channels your team could be on and even then you need some sign in code for the internet channel they switched the game to, to watch a game that should have been on the main channel! And you don’t have a code, so you miss the 1st half of the game. The whole reason I’m spending hundreds of dollars to watch 4 months of college football is to see my team and I can’t even do that any more. Choose a cheaper streaming service and get games on ESPN, but not FOX sports or CBS sports or vice or versa.

    If I stopped caring about college sports, would this news effect me in any way? Something I didn’t even care about… or need in my life before I decided to go back to college, it was only after I picked CU, almost 2 years before I actually started school that I caught Buffs fever, would this news effect me in any way if I just turned my attention to something else?

    How long before USC & maybe Stanford get p/u by the B10, and the rest of the PAC12 gets left behind to become a group5 conference. Don’t laugh, it could happen, they play ND & more B10 teams than most other PAC12 schools do. And, being private schools with money & expensive educations to offer recruits… and the number of players USC put into the NFL along with recruiting California, means when they are clicking with a good staff they get top recruits. From a region that has 150 top players within a few hours drive, close enough that players families & friends can attend.

    I can only wait & see where all this goes, but I’m dialing back the time & money I’ve been spending to follow the Buffs and college sports as a whole. Ignorance is bliss… and if I don’t know (follow) what’s happening it can’t piss me off, or cost me money.

    1. Very nice “marcusbarcus. ”

      Similar mode.

      Don’t watch the NBA
      Only some NFL games
      MLB don’t care
      NHL sometimes

      College football Not as much as I use to
      Same with basketball
      Sheesh writing this depresses me.

      Oh Well then or Okay then Nice


      Note: But I do like to watch College softball.

      1. pretty much the same except that I watch all the Avs games and more college basketball than you. More BB because there aint crap else to watch for our 162 dollar a month satellite bill that doesn’t even include the HBO type channels. And what I do tune in is drowning in redundant Chinese water torture commercials (on top of the effing 162 a month). As soon as the thermometer hits 50 I dont watch poop because I am outside all the time. Working on a finance thing to either telecommute out just hang out in Costa Rica for the months of Jan thru March where futball may be the only thing happening….which is fine with me because I will be out on the deep blue trying to catch a Dorado for dinner and lounging at the pool in the evening with Patron margs being a dirty ol man perusing the bikinis.
        There are lives out there beyond fan slavery

        1. ep, call me I’ve got my speedo packed and ready to go. I have memorized over 100 Tequila, and Rum drinks and all they need is some Costa Rican fruit added to the mix.

          1. lets see if I can process this. An Arizona resident wanting to leave during the winter.? Would that make you the world’s first reverse snowbird? Maybe you should get on one of those float planes and head to Yellow Knife in the Northwest territories June thru September. O yeah….make sure they have a golf course first

          2. Speedo, pretty funny, thankfully I don’t know what you look like, so I can’t picture it! 😉

  6. When the news came out that Tucker was going to interview, I caveated my response with an “IF” it was true, then I felt it showed a man with a lack of character and integrity. When polled by Stuart about how we felt about his comments, I did not feel positively about it. Why? Not just because damage had been done to some extent but in the way the answers were provided by Tucker. There was no definitive statement that “I am not interviewing” or “I have withdrawn my name from consideration”. Now this. It’s not a surprise. Neither is the fact that he did not address his team. I am not going on any tirade about his departure but will say that my original reaction was about breaking trust with players, their parents, with CU management, alums, and fans. And it is also about lack of character and courage. He didn’t meet with his team? Is that the case? If so, that is truly pathetic and a mark of a small man. Someone brought up, over last weekend, that some of the initial reactions had to do with race. I haven’t read all the posts from a few days back but I, for one, had zero bias in my response . It was all about character, walking the talk, and having alignment between your words and actions. In that vein, bring on Bienemy, someone who is now a highly regarded coordinator, a Buff alum, and a former very talented player. None of that has anything to do with race and everything to do with who he is and what he brings to the table. If anything, that would be positive on the race aspect.

  7. i wish there was a way to contact the kids that tucker will be recruiting to m.s. just to make sure that they know what a corrupt bullshitter he is. i’ll bet tucker
    is a trump fan. they seem to share values. i have a difficult time with people who say “well it’s understandable ‘cuz it’s a lot more money.” this is the lesson
    tucker taught these young men: your word is good unless there’s money involved. or maybe something else of value. actually , it’s better not to believe
    in anyone. nice going tucker.

  8. I must be an old man who’s outlived his time. I grew up in a time when a man’s word was his bond and a handshake was a contract. Nowdays, I guess it’s that’s the exception rather than the norm. Given the current climate, I understand why he left. Doesn’t set much of a example for the young men he was hired to teach, though.

  9. F-Tucker, a man of no character or ethics. I hope he might be going down the same road as Bielema when he left Wisconsin. How much $ do you need? When you die the dirt takes over.

    He was a great hire and I think Rick made a good choice, you just can’t reach into a man’s soul too see what he is really about.

    Stefano, grow some balls and get rid of Larry Scott, an idiot at best that makes ore than any FB coach in the conference. With that said he has a really nice office. Phil is a pill and he is a joke, typical government lackey with no spine.

    I am appreciative of Rick George, but how long before he moves on due to the ineptitude of the Pac-12?

    Sad to say, can we just go back to the Big-12?

    Lastly, thanks to Stuart for all of the updates!

  10. This has exposed CU for what it really is. A middle of the road program in a weak Power 5 conference. That said, success has been had here in the past, and could again. No more mercenaries, as this is clearly a stepping stone job. Hire someone with CU ties. Either that, or someone who’s been there, done that, with a proven pedigree, already made money, wants to coach, commit and stay a while. Fully understand the money/business aspect, but the way in which this was handled was just chicken sh!t. The agent informed Rick & Co. Mel didn’t address anyone.

  11. Yes it is a gut punch. Mel Tucker is obviously not the man of character he presents himself to be. Thank you for letting us know sooner than later. Sometimes what seems like the worst thing that has ever happened, turns out to open the door for the best thing to ever happen. Get to work Rick George and find the next great CU coach. I look forward to pulling against Mel Tucker forever and I cannot wait to play Michigan State in a bowl game. Hopefully soon.

  12. Long time reader; this absolutely sucks, i do not wish him well and do not understand the well wishes he is receiving. This question has been thrown around alot this morning: “if you were doubled your salary wouldn’t you leave?”. All things being equal yes, but this is not what Tucker did. What Tucker did was the equivalent of me hiring a new team at a struggling company, choose a new system for the company to use and then bolt 2 months into implementing it right before a product launch leaving my team to fix all of the bugs. Do you think any of the people hired or anyone else at that place would wish me well after I did that? Absolutely not! He left right after signing day, lied to the kids( who don’t have the same option to leave or see any of that money Mel’s sniffing) and just before spring practice. This move will cause way more damages than MSU or Tucker will give us for the buyout

  13. Chris Fowler was too kind to Mel. I get it though. He has to interact with him on a professional level. He was spot on in regard to the Pac 12 becoming absolete due to TV rights.

  14. Hire Chev, with a power 5 clause. If he leaves for a power 5 school prior to his contract, or works for a power 5 within 5 years of breaking his contract, its a 10 or 15 million dollar penalty, why not 20 million. Since the big 10 and other conferences make so much more, lets dip into their pockets when they poach our coaches. My guess Chev would sign that contract just for the opportunity to be a HC and prove himself. Therefore he is ours or were going to get some money back on the initial investment.
    In addition, Mr Scott with the Pac 12 needs a new business model or we can expect more defections on a yearly basis. Perhaps some changes in the Pac 12 are needed……

  15. Yo Stuart,

    An open letter to Mel Tucker, if you will.

    Yo Mel Tucker,

    You messed up man. You took the short term bump in pay, but you gave up way too much for the long term. Your burgeoning success was based on your ability to talk to people and have them believe you. You sold your soul and ethics for a couple million dollars.

    For a lot of people, that would be understandable. They were never going to earn that kind of money anyway, so a couple million bucks would have a big draw. But you just took over your first head coaching job in a sport where lots of coaches make really big salaries. You had a chance to show people what you could do…

    But instead you took the short term payout. You need to make it last, because chances are that the really big bucks you want in the future are no longer going to be there. All you had was your word, and every coach recruiting against you can now honestly call you a liar.

    You could have kept quiet, and mulled over the offers from MSU. But instead, you kept opening your mouth and letting the sewage flow. Recruits and their parents will no longer trust you. Other coaches will bring up your name over and over as the kind of guy who can’t be trusted.

    Did you learn nothing from what happened to Willie Taggart? He bolts Oregon after one year for Florida State, and then gets fired halfway through his second season in Tallahassee. Do you know what he’s earning now? $750,000. That’s good for a lot of people, but pretty low on the food chain for college coaches.

    I thought you were a good guy, and more savvy than you apparently are. You had a chance to build something where your word is your oath. You had a chance to prove you are an honest and respectable man.

    Hate to say it man, but your word was all you were selling. And those words have no value now. Enjoy East Lansing. You won’t be there for long.

    Mark / Boulderdevil

    1. It boggles my mind that 3 million isnt enough for a couple of years before bolting. Maybe Mel isnt as sure of himself as he puts on and is going to grab the money as soon as possible….or more likely he is a phony as a person and a complete greed bag……which seems to be a condition infecting many other areas of this country.
      VK applied the term “flim flam man” to HWSRN. Flim Flam man hardly comes any where close to describing Mel Tuck em and leave em

    2. This is perfect Mark. I’ve been thinking about the Taggart flop all afternoon. I think MT is going the same way.

  16. This says it all: Cornerback Mekhi Blackmon: “I’m typically the one to stay positive. But we really don’t deserve this (stuff).”

  17. Here’s another thing we can all take solace in, or try to. 5-7.

    Sure, we think it “felt” better than the 5-7 seasons before that. Still didn’t someone say you are what your record says you are?

    And, that was with – as I’ve argued – the best roster in a coaching transition since Rick to Gary. We’ll see how many actually make NFL rosters, which I’d say is the real arbiter on that point, but… sure seems that way to me.

    So, there’s that. Damn. It’s a crazy world out there.

    And, like many people posting here and feeling elsewhere, I don’t hold Mel’s choice against him. I think it’ll be interesting to watch and see what he can/cannot do in East Lansing. There’s more money, more support, close to his home, and when they play the huskers, their stadium probably won’t be red. Boulder’s not a “football” town. Well, unless we’re winning. And, if they can cover for Nasser for 20+ years, we know sports matter there. Nutty.

    I’m glad I’m not in Rick’s shoes right now. Get this hire right, dude.

    Go Buffs.

  18. I hope he gets car jacked in East Lansing. I’m getting off this roller coaster. Here’s to fall Saturdays doing anything besides caring about football.

    1. While I don’t advocate car jacking, I do nominate Black Rob’s response to the MT debacle as the best of the lot. He said the most by saying the least.

  19. Well…..deep subject (and this qualifies)….could go on and on…I’ve been reading this site for many years but have never posted. I agree with the spirit of all the posts so far, I’m both disappointed, and pissed. Thought we might have our guy in Tucker, but I guess if you throw enough $$ against the wall, some is going to stick. The $$ is going to ruin college football, and now they are going to pay players for their “likeness.” (read reputation/street cred). Very sorry for the kids/recruits as Shay noted, and it doesn’t surprise me in their comments on the Buff Zone article. I voted in the poll to move on, but damn, we do a lot of moving on with football coaches….Character matters and Karma is a B…..GO BUFFS!

    1. I have had to face the reality that college football and sports in general is about money and pretty much nothing else. I love college football but am wondering why I’m wasting my time. It is to the point where teams with the Buffs budget have no realistic chance of going anywhere. I may switch to the NFL. At least there are rules that make an eying field for all teams.

  20. Been A CU fan since 96′ (I was 8 Years old). Rick N. Hurt. Attended my undergrad years during the Hawkins era (That says enough right there) and now this as an alumni hurts worse than I could imagine. I wish no ill will on any man including Mel Tucker. I only know that whatever Mel gets in life is exactly what he deserves. Money is not the solution to ALL happiness and karma comes around both good and bad.

    I trust in Rick George to find a suitable replacement for our program and lead our athletic department to respectability.

    GO BUFFS!!!!

      1. I read that, Rob, and thought, I actually wouldn’t mind seeing that experiment at this point. I was not into that last time around (only 14 months ago). I still don’t think it’ll happen b/c of relationships w/ Rick, etc. I also am not the guy – as you all know – who gives Jim the credit for the 2016 season. Some? Sure. Definitely not all. Not even most.

        But, here’s why it might make sense now: Dude wants a head coaching job. He’s “probably” not a job hopper at this point in his career. Loves Boulder, apparently. And, we can see what he can really do as the man running the show.

        I don’t think Chev should be the guy, but won’t be surprised if he is.

        I know Bienemy had to get a call this morning. I would be surprised if he’s interested. Been there, done that. Life is easier coaching pros than 17-23 yr olds. But, it may be the step he needs to take to get an NFL HC job (for reasons we all know which are BS, but still there).

        All I know is this is where Rick makes his money. Get it right, my man. Get it right.

        Go Buffs

  21. A business decision for Mel. Double the compensation and more $$ for staff. He would be crazy not to take it. East Lansing sucks, but got to follow the money.
    That said, Mel sold us all on his commitment to CU and the Buff Nation. And we bought it. Turned out to be just words.

  22. Integrity = zero and it will follow him for many years to come. Mel to recruit, “We are building a great program for years to come”, recruit “Coach Tucker, didn’t you say that at Colorado?”.

    Enjoy the 300 days of cloudy weather Mel and as Maggie from Caddyshack says to Danny Noonan, “Thanks for nothin”

  23. Article from USATODAY on the field becoming very uneven.

    Opinion: Michigan State’s Mel Tucker hire underscores type of competitive imbalance NCAA ignores

    Mere hours after a media tour to explain why he had rejected overtures from Michigan State to remain as Colorado’s football coach, Mel Tucker reversed course Tuesday night and reached an agreement to leave Boulder after just one season and head to East Lansing.


  24. Integrity = zero and it will follow him for many years to come. Mel to recruit, “We are building a great program for years to come”, recruit “Coach Tucker, didn’t you say that at Colorado?”.

    Enjoy the 300 days of cloudy weather Mel and as Maggie from Caddyshack says to Danny Noonan, “Thanks for nothin”

  25. Got to give that Tucker (rhymes with….never mind…I’ll take the high road) credit for a Harvard Business School case study in using banal “loyalty” language to leverage into more dinero for himself and staff. Wonder if he will start poaching some CU staff. That sound you here is Mike Mac laughing his ass off to the tune of $6.65 million. NCAA becoming pro-football lite more and more each year.

  26. Of course, this is also a black eye on Rick George, he had to evaluate the character and commitment of the coach he hired and he missed.

  27. Well at least he signed the class, can’t blame him for leaving, I would leave too for that kind of money. Might stop following college football since the playing field is becoming more and more tilted.

    1. I got a slightly different viewpoint. If you had any faith in yourself, the kids you recruited and a shred of self respect let alone respect for your commitments 3 million a year should be enough for at least a couple of years. This kind of extreme mercenary behavior is a horrible example for the kids you recruited and lied to.

      1. Agree with ep. It’s not like the dude was making 250k, which is a ton of money to begin with (although perhaps not in Boulder these days :)). The guy was making close to $3 million per. As some point, are you not making enough money that other considerations would prevail???? Apparently not for everyone. As an alum I may be biased but I would never leave a $3 million gig in Boulder for a $5 million gig in East Lansing.

  28. I’m old enough – and have seen enough (as many of us have) – to no longer be surprised by a person’s behavior. Disappointed? Yes. Surprised? No. Perhaps Rick George will promote from within and make Chev the interim coach at least in order to keep some degree of continuity in the program?

    There’s an old adage among the Irish. We say Irish Alzheimer’s Disease is the ability to forget everything but the grudges. Even I have trouble figuring out the point of doing so here (beyond feeling better on a base level releasing anger) Coach Tucker’s success or failure at MSU will not affect the kids who come to CU to play football for the Buffs or the adults hired to coach them. Life is a forward-moving exercise. The Buffs shall do so. They’ve no other option.

    1. Well said Adam. I have to stop leaving the states for extended time. Last time I left I boarded the plane during the Oregon State meltdown. This time I arrived just as the Tucker $&!*storm hit.
      Some kind of Oak Island curse hangs over CU football. Makes me glad I enjoy hoops more—but still hurt for the Buff players and fans…

  29. Please give the job to Chiaverini………….Loyal, Committed, Great Recruiter. Current and former players have nothing but positive things to say about him. We need someone that WANTS to be here for the long haul and cares about the university.

    1. I believe in Chiav..I realize he struggled as OC a couple of years ago, but I also believe that the gardener had a lot to do with playing not to lose. He is an amazing recruiter, but importantly a loyal Buff for life who I think deserves a shot.

      1. That would be a good choice. Maybe pair him with a seasoned head coach as a mentor. Some one like, oh I don’t know, maybe the current radio color analyst on the radio? A certain Gary Barnett.

  30. I wish him nothing but failure….sigh….like thats possible for someone pulling down 5 million a year and would probably get tens of millions if he fails on the field and gets fired.
    Coaching contracts are insane at many levels past the dollar amounts and Buff football is truly cursed.

  31. He is a classless piece of trash!!!! He never confronted the kids at all, he never had the audacity to be a human being or mentor. Get your ass straight out of Boulder, and here’s to the future recruits of the world, the man is a liar, this will follow you. Hope Dantoni left a few sanction surprises you piece of Sh!T!

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