Auburn University doesn’t want fans rolling the Toomer’s oak damaged by the fire after a potential homecoming win this Saturday, according to a statement released by interim Assistant Vice President and Director of University Communications Mike Clardy.
The suspension of rolling the Magnolia Ave. oak will be an indefinite one, pending further inspection of the tree.
“Auburn University is asking fans to refrain from rolling the Auburn Oak at Toomer’s Corner that was intentionally set on fire last weekend,” Clardy wrote. “The restriction will be in place until further assessment of the tree’s health can be made.
The statement encouraged fans to continue to roll the College Street oak if Auburn defeats Louisiana-Monroe in its homecoming game Saturday.
The damaged oak on Magnolia Ave. was burned in a fire after Saturday night following Auburn’s victory over LSU. Jochen Wiest, 29, was arrested Sunday after Auburn police issued a warrant charging him with desecration of a venerable object, according to the police report.
Clary’s statement also reminded fans to avoid rolling the 10 descendant oak trees along the walkway between Toomer’s Corner and Samford Hall. Many of those trees were rolled after the win over LSU. The only two trees meant to be rolled — prior to Saturday’s incident — were the two designated oaks on College Street and Magnolia Ave.
For the time being, that will be limited strictly to the College Street tree.
“There is little or no healthy foliage on the burnt tree. Most of the remaining leaves will drop off over the next week or so,” Gary Keever, professor of horticulture, said. “We will have to wait until next spring to see what long-term effects the fire had.”