Despite recent negative headlines connected to the football program in the fallout of the Larry Nassar scandal, Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio officially had his contract extended by one year on Friday. Dantonio’s contract now runs through the 2024 season.
The extension approval from the board of trustees for Dantonio has been an annual formality in East Lansing in recent years. As written in the contract, Dantonio’s contract is essentially automatically extended on an annual basis unless the university provides Dantonio advance notice there will be no extension given by the middle of January. In the event Dantonio is informed he will not receive an extension, he is then given the option to retire for a reduced buyout. Even if the school had not given Dantonio the extension, he would still be under contract through 2023.
Dantonio is coming off a 10-3 season that included wins against Penn State and Michigan as well as a Holiday Bowl victory over Washington State this past season, which was a nice rebound after a rough 3-9 season the previous season. But the success of the season was quickly washed away from the mindset recently as Dantonio has had to defend himself against reports suggesting he essentially looked the other way when football players were accused of sexual assault at Michigan State.
Michigan State remains under investigation by the NCAA following the trial of former sports doctor Larry Nassar, who was sentenced up to 175 years in prison for prolonged abuse of gymnasts and other athletes at Michigan State and with USA Gymnastics over the course of his career. It is specifically known if Dantonio’s program is a target of the investigation as the NCAA looks to review the entire athletics department at Michigan State.
Dantonio is 100-45 in 11 seasons at Michigan State. The 2018 season will mark his 12th year on the job.