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Michigan State officially fires Mel Tucker amid sexual harassment allegations

Michigan State officially fires Mel Tucker amid sexual harassment allegations
Michigan State officially fires Mel Tucker amid sexual harassment allegations 00:44

(CBS DETROIT) - Michigan State University officially fired head football coach Mel Tucker on Wednesday, Sept. 27, amid sexual harassment allegations

According to a press release, the university's vice president and director of athletics, Alan Haller, terminated Tucker's employment contract with the support of the interim president and board of trustees. 

He was terminated for "his admitted and undisputed behaviors which have brought public disrespect, contempt and ridicule upon the university; and constitute a material breach of his agreement, and moral turpitude."

Here is a copy of the full termination letter:

Michigan State University Mel Tucker Termination Letter by CBS Detroit on Scribd

This comes after Haller issued a notice of intent to fire Tucker on Sept. 18. According to the release, Tucker did not present adequate reasons as to why he shouldn't be terminated. 

On Monday, Sept. 25, Tucker's attorney responded to the notice saying they did not have cause to fire him because he didn't violate the terms of his contract or "engage in unprofessional or unethical behavior." 

Tucker responded to the notice himself the day after it was issued and said, "I am disappointed — but not surprised — to learn that MSU intends to terminate my contract over Ms. Tracy's improper public disclosure of the entire 1,200-page investigation file regarding her baseless complaint against me," Tucker said in a statement. "Let's be clear. I don't believe MSU plans to fire me because I admitted to an entirely consensual, private relationship with another adult who gave one presentation at MSU, at my behest, over two years ago." To see his entire statement, visit here

"Simply put, Mr. Tucker's response does not provide any information that refutes or undermines the multiple grounds for termination for cause set forth in the notice," Haller said. "Instead, his 25-page response, which includes a 12-page letter from his attorney and a 13-page 'expert report,' provides a litany of excuses for his inappropriate behavior while expressly admitting to the problematic conduct outlined in the notice."  

The civil rights case will continue. The university attached a chart with the steps for the timeline of a case investigation that MSU's Office for Civil Rights uses. 

Harlon Barnett is being named interim head coach, which is subject to approval during the board's meeting in October. 

This comes as Tucker is accused of sexually harassing Brenda Tracy, an activist and rape survivor, during a phone call last April. The allegations were made public in a USA Today report on Sunday, Sept. 10.

The 51-year-old has said the allegations are false, and that the phone call he had with Tracy was consensual. 

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