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It didn't help that while they were struggling Alabama was going 12-0 in its second season under Saban, winning the SEC West and rising to the top of the polls.
Tuberville met with university president Jay Gogue on Monday and followed that up with two days of meetings Jacobs.
Auburn's offense sputtered badly the past two seasons. Tuberville gambled with the hire of Franklin and a departure from the team's more traditional, run-oriented attack, going to the no-huddle, spread at a school noted for turning out NFL-caliber tailbacks.
The Tigers finished 11th in the Southeastern Conference and 110th of 119 teams in scoring offense, and a midstream switch back to the smashmouth style didn't help.
The biggest problems all were evident in the season finale against Alabama. The Tigers had three turnovers and never got clicking behind sophomore quarterback Kodi Burns while a talented defense that kept getting put back out on the field sputtered.
Auburn finished with its worst record since going 5-6 in 1999, Tuberville's debut season. The team went on to win the SEC West the following year and captured at least a share of the division title four other times.
The Tigers often overachieved but struggled in two seasons when much was expected of them, including this one. The 2003 Auburn team opened with a No. 6 ranking but finished 8-5. His perfect '04 squad opened at No. 17.
Tuberville joins Mississippi State's Sylvester Croom and Tennessee's Phillip Fulmer as SEC coaches stepping down this season after both teams also failed to live up to expectations.
Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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