One Big Ten team might have made more than a simple accounting mistake in giving a big bonus to their head football coach instead of the staff members the sum was earmarked for.
According to USA Today, Michigan State athletic director Alan Haller awarded head coach Mel Tucker a $100,000 bonus that Tucker's contract stated was designated to be shared among him and his staff. But all of the money went to Tucker rather than being shared with his staff.
"The University shall pay a yearly bonus of $100,000 to the Program, to be allocated between the Coach, the assistant football coaches, and the Program administrative staff, at the discretion of the Athletics Director with input from the Coach. The University shall such (sic) bonus no later than June 30th following the end of each football season, provided, however, that the University shall not be obligated to pay such bonus to the Program if the Coach had provided notice of termination to the University," the contract states.
Tucker reportedly received that money months after signing a 10-year contract worth $9.5 million per year - one of the most lucrative contracts in coaching. He allegedly received the $100,000 bonus on top of a $250,000 bonus for leading the Spartans to the Peach Bowl last year.
Mel Tucker certainly earned every penny last year, leading the Spartans to an 11-2 record - their best record since 2015 - and chose to stay on despite significant interest from other programs in hiring him.
Unfortunately, the results haven't really carried over into 2022. The Spartans are just 5-6 this year and need to shock No. 11 Penn State on the road just to get bowl eligible this year.
If Michigan State really has improperly allocated its earmarked payments, it might wind up being more than just a bad look...