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Southerners Love Their Football…and Their Trees. - Sierra Daily
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Sierra Daily

Feb 22, 2011

Southerners Love Their Football…and Their Trees.

Southern love of collegiate football is no fiercer than in Alabama, where fans of the University of Alabama and Auburn University share a more-than-casual enmity.  Last year was particularly hard on Alabama fans. Auburn’s Tigers beat Alabama’s Crimson Tide in the annual to-the-death match-up known as the Iron Bowl, then continued on to secure a berth in the BCS National Championship Game in January, a contest that Alabama had won handily the previous year. (Some Alabama fans couldn’t bring themselves to rally behind a team from their own state, instead throwing support to some team from Out West called the Oregon Ducks, modifying their famous “Roll, Tide, Roll!” chant to “Roll, Ducks, Roll!” It didn’t help. Auburn won.)

But Southerners also love their trees, and when it became public that an over-the-top Alabama fan, irate that his team lost in November’s Iron Bowl, had poisoned two 130-year-old oak trees on the Auburn campus that had long served as the focal point for post-game celebrations, football fans throughout the state turned into tree-huggers.  An Auburn student took to Facebook and organized a “tree hug” that elicited more than 8,000 RSVP’s, while Alabama fans created their own Facebook page in support of Auburn's oaks.  As of Tuesday,  the joint efforts of Auburn and Alabama fans had collected more than $39,000 to help preserve the trees or replace them if arborists deem them beyond help.

Facebook: It spurs a revolution in Egypt and harmony in Alabama.

--Reed McManus

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