Auburn, AL (SportsNetwork.com) - Auburn defensive coordinator Ellis Johnson was fired on Sunday, a day after the Tigers lost the highest-scoring Iron Bowl in history.
Johnson was in his second season leading the Auburn defense and has coached in the Southeastern Conference for almost two decades.
The Tigers (8-4) gave up 34 points in the second half of Saturday's 55-44 loss to Alabama and allowed Heisman Trophy hopeful Amari Cooper to gain an Iron Bowl-record 224 yards on 12 catches.
Auburn ranks 59th in the nation in total defense, including 85th in passing defense. The Tigers have given up 26.1 points per game.
"At this time I felt it was best for our program to make a change with our defensive coordinator," Auburn coach Gus Malzahn said in a statement. "Ellis is a true professional and I would like to thank him for his contributions at Auburn."
Johnson said in a statement that he understands it's "part of the business."
"I did think we were good in several areas, but overall it wasn't good enough," he said. "I'm disappointed for our players, but this is a results business. I want to thank coach Malzahn and Auburn for the opportunity the last two years."
Auburn still has a bowl game left to play this season.