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Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.
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A&M coach to be evaluated after season
Associated Press, Updated 2 days ago
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COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) - Texas A&M will wait until the end of the football season before deciding the future of coach Dennis Franchione, who was rebuked this year for allowing boosters to buy information about his players.

The Aggies have underachieved in Franchione's five seasons, losing ground to the elite teams in the Big 12 and slipping out of the national spotlight. His standing clearly was undermined by the discovery of subscription e-mails to boosters that gave information about players. Franchione's contract pays him more than $2 million a year and runs through 2012.

The Houston Chronicle and CBS Sports.com reported Monday that Franchione and the school were working on a buyout deal that would take effect at the end of this season.

"There are several false rumors circulating regarding the Texas A&M football program," the school said in a statement.

Athletic department spokesman Alan Cannon said athletic director Bill Byrne will wait until after the season to evaluate Franchione, as he does with all coaches.

"I have received no indication that he has changed his stance," Cannon said.

Franchione has a 31-28 record at A&M and is 2-12 against main rivals Texas, Texas Tech and Oklahoma. A&M plays Missouri on Saturday.

On Sept. 20, the Aggies lost 34-17 to Miami on national television. A week later, a newspaper revealed a series of e-mails that Franchione had been sending to boosters, who paid $1,200 to receive them. The e-mails contained news about players' injuries, their academic standing and Franchione's blunt assessments of their skills.

Byrne was never aware of the e-mails until a newspaper reporter asked about them. On Oct. 11, Byrne admonished Franchione, ordered him to shut down his personal Web site and fired Mike McKenzie, Franchione's longtime personal assistant and author of the e-mails.

The school began an internal investigation and reported the findings to the NCAA, acknowledging possible rules violations. A&M is awaiting a response from the NCAA.

Byrne said the scandal would be part of Franchione's postseason evaluation.

"The Aggies are embarrassed right now," Byrne said on Oct. 11. "This has been a very unfortunate incident we do not want to experience again."                                                                                                                                                                                                       

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