This from Auburn head football coach Tommy Tuberville, who has made his first public comments about ongoing negotiations with Auburn athletics director Jay Jacobs and president Jay Gogue. Tuberville made these comments during Thursday's Tiger Talk show. Tuberville is on a hunting trip in Stuttgart, Ark. His comments:
"There always seems to be a sense of urgency in the public eye, but contracts take forever. What you want to try to do is agree on individual things. There are obviously things in the program that I think need to be looked at very hard for us to not only be able to continue to win but also continue to get better.
"That's the reason I talked to Dr. Gogue and Jay Jacobs. What we've done and will continue to do for probably another week is sit down and look at the best circumstances for this team and this program. There's a lot of variables there that you have to look at. When you redo it, that's for a few years.
"I want everybody, not just our administration but also the fans and everybody, to understand we are at a point, and if we are going to get to another point we can't keep on as is. You have to make changes in facilities. You have to have a plan. I've been here nine years and think I'm pretty experienced in what I feel and our staff feels needs to happen for us to go to another level, get back to Atlanta and win in Atlanta. We are always working toward that. If there's anything out there physical that we can do to make sure that happens, we need to do that.
"We're not going to run and jump through this. I'm not looking to go anywhere. I'm looking to make sure people understand what we need to do to get better. This program needs to take steps in some areas to improve, and it's something we need to talk about.
"I read a little bit about this job and that job. I'm worried about this one. We are going to take our time. We are going to look to do the best we possibly can for the program, and whatever happens, can happen. It's not about the money. It's about making sure we get this thing right for everybody.
"We have a lot of competition in this league. I feel like I know what we need to do to take steps further. I'll try to get that over to the people in charge, see what they feel about it. As I said earlier, as long as they want us here, we'll be here. We are going to continue to work in that direction. People don't need to panic or anything. This is for the betterment of Auburn.
"Obviously, I always look out for my family which is our coaches and our families. I want to make sure everybody is happy and healthy, but also has a chance to have success. We've had great success in nine years. We want the success to improve in nine years. I think everybody wants that."
Tuberville, Jacobs and Gogue met Monday, and Tuberville met with Jacobs on Tuesday. They did not meet as scheduled Wednesday, but all parties have indicated that meetings have gone well.
Jacobs has also said that Arkansas has not contacted him for permission to talk to Tuberville.
Tuberville is expected to be back in Auburn today or Saturday before leaving Sunday for College Hall of Fame activities in New York.