Auburn University’s rolling of the Toomer’s Corner oaks voted top sports tradition

Published: March 09, 2018
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It's a lofty ritual rooted in victory and celebration – a paper roll and a toss of the hand unique to Auburn University and now recognized as the nation's top sports tradition.

The rolling of Toomer's Corner at Auburn has been named today as the nation's "Best Sports Tradition" by the USA Today 10Best Readers' Choice travel award contest. The tradition is one in which Auburn fans of all ages have celebrated athletic wins for decades by throwing rolls of toilet paper onto the branches of the oaks at the intersection of College Street and Magnolia Avenue. The result is a view of white paper-plastered trees resembling a snowy landscape.

"The rolling of Toomer's Corner is a cherished tradition that is unique to Auburn and is such an exciting and fun example of how Auburn fans far and wide come together as a family and celebrate the spirit and success of Auburn," said Mike Clardy, assistant vice president for communications and marketing.

Although there have been various legends as to how the Toomer's Corner tradition began, one of the more popular stories centers around when Toomer's Drugs had the only telegraph in the city. As the story goes, during away football games, when employees of the local drug store received news of a win, they would throw the ticker tape from the telegraph onto the power lines. Today's unveiling of the rolling of Toomer's Corner as the nation's top collegiate sports tradition comes after four weeks of online contest voting by the public. Contest nominees were chosen by a panel of relevant experts, which included a combination of editors from USA TODAY, editors from, relevant expert contributors and other Gannett Co., Inc. properties.

Auburn's tradition ranked first in a top 10 list that included, among others, such traditions as The Ohio State University's band forming the word Ohio in script, Mississippi State University's cowbell, The University of Oklahoma's "Sooner Schooner", Texas A&M University's "Midnight Yell" and Florida State University's "Planting of the Flaming Spear".