Auburn AD Jay Jacobs Supporting Basketball Coach Tony Barbee

Auburn A.D. Jay Jacobs, left, smiles as he holds up a jersey for new men's basketball coach Tony Barbee on Thursday during an introductory news conference in Auburn, Ala.
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AUBURN, Ala. (AP) -- Auburn athletic director Jay Jacobs issued a letter of support for basketball coach Tony Barbee.

The statement Friday evening came two days after the Tigers wrapped up a 9-23 season with a first-round loss to Texas A&M in the Southeastern Conference tournament. They lost their last 10 games.

It was Barbee's third season at Auburn and the second with at least 20 losses in the $92 million Auburn Arena.

Jacobs says his "expectation is for our program to show significant improvement under coach Barbee's leadership." He said he and Barbee will work together "to support our basketball program at the highest level."

Barbee's contract runs through June 2017. His buyout would have been $3 million if he wasn't retained.

Six of his eight signees the first two seasons have left.

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