Mark Dantonio retires from Michigan State

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Photo courtesy of USA TODAY Sports

Mark Dantonio announced he will retire from his post as the head coach of Michigan State.

Dantonio was head coach at Cincinnati before taking over in East Lansing. He became the first head coach in 23 years to lead the school to a winning season. After his success, he became the 24th head coach at Michigan State in 2006.

The announcement comes at an odd time as National Signing day gets underway. It comes on the heels of former employee Curtis Blackwell suing Dantonio and Michigan State for wrongful termination.

Blackwell alleges Dantonio broke NCAA recruiting regulations. Defensive coordinator Mike Tressel will become an interim coach as the Spartans begin their coaching search.

“There have been so many amazing life moments in the last 13 years,” Dantonio wrote in a statement. “When I reflect, I think of our Big Ten championship games, our Big Ten Championships, the big games, the playoffs, the bowl wins, the moments, the milestones, the graduates, the NFL opportunities and finally, and perhaps most importantly, the relationships made.”

During 13 seasons, Dantonio achieved six, ten-win ones. He also turned Michigan into a NFL factory. This year was a down year, coming off back-to-back, 7-6 seasons. He has been heavily criticized for refusing to make sweeping changes on offense with his assistants.

As offenses have changed in addition to ongoing NCAA issues, his resignation may have been the best move for all parties involved. Dantonio finishes 115-57 at Michigan State with 12 bowl appearances in 13 seasons (6-6).

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