Auburn's Barbee enters tourney amid job questions

By: Matt Harris Email
By: Matt Harris Email

UTEP coach Tony Barbee was reportedly hired as the new men's basketball coach at Auburn, according to a story by the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer.

AUBURN, Ala. (AP) -- Auburn players can't escape the questions about coach Tony Barbee's job security.

Senior guard Chris Denson says the Tigers "hear it all the time, but we can't focus on that." Auburn opens the Southeastern Conference tournament Wednesday against South Carolina.

The 12th-seeded Tigers (14-15, 6-12 SEC) have doubled their league win total from last season.

Athletic director Jay Jacobs said after last season that his "expectation is for our program to show significant improvement under coach Barbee's leadership." Barbee, whose tenure has been marked by a number of transfers and dismissals, has gone 18-50 in SEC games and doesn't have a winning season.

Jacobs said Monday in a statement to The Associated Press that "as we always do, we will sit down with Tony after the season."

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