Auburn fires Barbee following SEC tournament loss

Auburn head coach Tony Barbee reacts to play against Texas A&M during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game at the Southeastern Conference tournament in Nashville, Tenn., Wednesday, March 13, 2013. (AP Photo/Dave Martin)
Auburn head coach Tony Barbee reacts to play against Texas A&M during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game at the Southeastern Conference tournament in Nashville, Tenn., Wednesday, March 13, 2013. (AP Photo/Dave Martin)

ATLANTA (AP) — Auburn athletic director Jay Jacobs has fired basketball coach Tony Barbee.

Jacobs announced the decision Wednesday night, shortly after the team left the Georgia Dome following Auburn’s 74-56 loss to South Carolina in the Southeastern Conference tournament.

Barbee insisted after the game the Tigers improved by finishing 14-16 overall and 6-12 in the Southeastern Conference. He said after the game he expected to meet with Jacobs when the team returned to Auburn.

Jacobs didn’t wait that long. He said in a statement a change “is best for the program.”

Jacobs says he believes Auburn should compete for basketball championships and said “It’s time for somebody else to have a turn.”

Barbee posted losing records in each of his four seasons.

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