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Franks fired after 29th straight ACC loss

10/20/2003 - Duke Blue Devils

DURHAM, N.C. -- Duke fired coach Carl Franks on Sunday and
appointed defensive coordinator Ted Roof as his replacement for the
rest of the season.

The firing comes a day after the Blue Devils (2-5) fell behind
Wake Forest 42-0 at halftime, and lost 42-13 for their
29th-straight Atlantic Coast Conference loss.

"Halftime of the game yesterday was the straw that broke the
camel's back for me," athletic director Joe Alleva said.

Franks is the third Division I-A head coach to be fired this
season, joining John Mackovic at Arizona and Todd Berry at Army.
Mississippi State's Jackie Sherrill announced last week that he
would retire at the end of the season.

Franks, a former Duke tight end, was 7-45 in 4½ seasons.

He had signed a contract extension through 2006 after going 2-10
last year, but it's unclear how much of his salary was guaranteed.
Alleva declined to discuss any details of the contract at a news
conference Sunday.

Franks did not immediately return a call to his home seeking
comment. He issued a statement through the school which read: "I
am disappointed that we didn't have more success. I certainly wish
I could have finished out the season, but Joe Alleva decided that a
change needed to be made."

Early this season, Alleva said Franks would have to win at least
one ACC game and the team would have to show significant progress
to keep his job.

However, Alleva pulled the plug on Franks after just four
conference games. The Blue Devils have four ACC games remaining and
a nonconference meeting at No. 22 Tennessee on Nov. 1.

Alleva said he kept Franks around for this year because the Blue
Devils last year were showing improvement. Duke returned a
league-high 20 starters from last year's team, but were averaging
an ACC-worst 15 points a game.

Alleva indirectly pointed to the problem when asked what Roof
could do to right the ship in Durham.

"I think Ted's very passionate and very enthusiastic, some of
the things that I think our team hasn't shown this year," Alleva
said.

Alleva said a search for a replacement will begin immediately,
and that Roof would be considered.

"I'm looking for a coach that can recruit, that can motivate
the team and that can lead this organization -- be a leader,"
Alleva said. "I think it's a great coaching job. We have nowhere
to go but up."

Franks returned to his alma mater in 1999 after nine seasons at
Florida as an assistant to Steve Spurrier, himself a former Duke
coach.

Following a 3-8 record in Franks' initial season at Duke, the
team had back-to-back 0-11 campaigns in 2000 and 2001. The Blue
Devils snapped a 23-game losing streak with a 23-16 victory over
East Carolina to open the 2002 season.

Duke opened this season 2-1 by beating Rice and Division I-AA
Western Carolina. They've since dropped four straight games to
Northwestern, Florida State, Maryland and the Demon Deacons.

Roof began his second stint as an assistant coach at Duke in
2002. The former All-ACC linebacker at Georgia Tech guided the Blue
Devil defense that year to lead the conference in rushing defense.
Duke also moved from 113th nationally in total defense in 2001 to
65th in 2002.

Roof also coached at Alabama, West Georgia, Massachusetts,
Western Carolina and Georgia Tech.