AUBURN, Ala. (AP) — Auburn athletic director Jay Jacobs said Saturday night he hasn’t been contacted by Texas A&M representatives requesting permission to interview Tigers coach Tommy Tuberville for the vacant job, but planned to meet with the coach over the next few days.
Jacobs reiterated that Tuberville is “our guy” and said he didn’t believe the coach would leave despite persistent reports that Texas A&M would pursue Tuberville to replace Dennis Franchione, who resigned after the Aggies’ win over Texas Friday.
“The thing with Texas A&M is that it has escalated a lot of conversation,” Jacobs said. “But when I went to him four weeks ago, I said, ‘Look, do you want to meet sooner than later?’ He said, ‘Absolutely not. There’s no sense because of the rumors to change what we do. Let’s not break stride and keep doing what we do.’ So that’s what we’ll do.”
Jacobs said no meeting time was set and that it would depend on Tuberville’s “recruiting calendar.”
Tuberville spent one season as the Aggies’ defensive coordinator in 1994.
He said earlier in the week that he planned to stay at Auburn “as long as they want us here. We’re fired up about that.”
It would cost $6 million to buy him out of the seven-year, $18 million deal he signed after the Tigers went 13-0 in 2004. Tuberville is making $2.6 million this season, which would increase by $200,000 next year.
Asked if Auburn would consider reducing the buyout if Tuberville asked, Jacobs said: “I haven’t gone back and looked but I think it’s iron clad. I’m not getting into hypothetical situations. He’s our guy and we’ll sit down and talk about things. We’ll address it and keep moving.”
Jacobs believes Tuberville’s statement this week should end speculation that he’s considering leaving.
“When it first started happening, he just said, ‘It seems like every year I get brought up in one of these things,’” Jacobs said. “And when it didn’t die down he said he was going to put an end to all of it. That’s what he did last week when he came out and said I want to be here.”