Harvey Updyke, an Alabama superfan who made headlines for poisoning trees at Auburn back in 2010, has died. He was 71 years old. Updyke's son, Bear, told AL.com that Harvey died of natural causes in Louisiana, where he has been living recently. Updyke gained national attention when he called into the Paul Finebaum radio show in 2011 and admitted to poisoning the trees at Toomer's Corner.
"Let me tell you what I did," Updyke said. "The weekend after the Iron Bowl, I went to Auburn because I lived 30 miles away, and I poisoned the two Toomer's trees. I put Spike 80DF in 'em. They're not dead yet, but they definitely will die." Updyke later pleaded guilty in 2013 to a felony charge of criminal damage of an agricultural facility. He spent more than 70 days in jail. Updyke was then ordered to pay $800,000 in court-order penalties and restitution. However, Updyke only paid around $6,900 by last October.
Auburn later had to remove the trees and new ones were planted. There was an attempt to save the original trees, but it was unsuccessful. The corner was eventually redone with "untainted soil and replanted with two new fully grown southern live oak trees," according to 247Sports. The trees were replaced for a second time in 2016 after being set on fire by Jochen Wiest following Auburn's win against LSU.
The tree's on Toomer's Corner are known for being covered with toilet paper following by wins for Auburn. Last year, Updyke made an appearance's on Finebaum's radio show and said what he did was unintentional. "I didn't mean it. Paul, they're only trees. Not like I tried to kill their crow that flies around. You know, I didn't try to kill LSU's tiger," he said.
When Finebaum responded, "We've had this conversation privately, but now we're going to have it publicly. You still don't get it do you," Updyke replied: "I'm not as dumb as I look. It was supposed to be a joke." While Updyke had poisoned the trees, Auburn was having a memorable season. The year ended with them going 14-0 and winning the national championship. Along with that, quarterback Cam Newton won the Heisman Trophy. Alabama, one the other hand, went on to win the national title in 2011 and 2012.