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Penn State in Top 25

Penn State is eligible for the postseason again, and it has as good a chance as anyone to win the conference. Penn State is ranked 24th now in NCAAF

Auburn fans give oaks one more roll

AUBURN, Ala. Auburn fans Online Bingo Play Slots Online in US NFL Betting Lines said goodbye to the two oak trees at Toomers Corner with one more toilet paper celebration following the spring game on Saturday.

An A-day-record crowd of 83,401 watched the Orange team defeat the Blue squad 35-14 at Jordan-Hare Stadium in Gus Malzahns first spring game since he was hired to coach the Tigers. Thousands of fans then made their way to drape toilet paper over the two frail, poison-infested oaks in a tribute that was more celebratory than somber.

Theres more to Auburn than two oak trees, revered and sturdy as they are, retired athletic director David Housel said. These oak trees are but an outward visible symbol of the Auburn heart. This is a day of celebration and remembrance.

The spring game included 164 all-purpose yards and a touchdown by junior college transfer Cameron Artis-Payne, and Jonathan Mincy was ejected for a targeted hit above the shoulders on wide receiver Dimitri Reese.

Longtime Alabama fan Harvey Updyke Jr. pleaded guilty on March 22 to poisoning the Toomer trees after the 2010 Iron Bowl, when Cam Newton led Auburn to the national title and an Iron Bowl comeback from a 24-0 deficit.

The trees will be cut down Tuesday, and officials unveiled a plan on Saturday to renovate Toomers Corner that is expected to be completed next year.

Something doesnt have to be old to be a tradition, said Bill Stone, the president of the Auburn Alumni Association. Well be here and were gonna roll and roll and roll this corner just as we always have and just as we always will.

Toomers Corner is the bustling connecting point of campus and community, where Toomers Drugs serves up lemonade and lunch at the old-fashioned counter and the trees serve as a gateway.

The celebratory rollings date back at least 40 years, starting with the now-underground wires that used to criss-cross the corner and switching to the trees some three decades ago, according to Housel.

A system of wires crossing the street will replace the trees as a temporary solution for postgame celebrations in a tribute to the old days.

Harrison Mills, the president of Auburns student government association, said the Samford Park renovation will improve the openness, accessibility and accommodations for fans.

There were plenty of celebrations at Toomers Corner when Malzahn was the offensive coordinator at Auburn from 2009-11. He came back to the school after Gene Chizik was fired following a 3-9 season.

Malzahn, who received a five-year contract worth $2.3 million annually, said Saturday he and his team are going to give fans a reason to once again shower the corner in toilet paper.

Heres the plan in the fall: to give the Auburn family numerous opportunities to roll these trees, Malzahn said to a roar of applause.

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The GMAC Bowl series has produced the most lopsided games of any bowl series in recent years, as favorites are on an incredible 7-0 SU and ATS run, winning by an average margin of 30.3 points per game. Central Michigan hopes that trend continues, although the MAC representative has been on the short end of the L3 blowouts. The Chippewas are 2-point favorites at after spending most of the last three weeks as favorites of 4-points or more.

The Chippewas got here by virtue of an 11-2 record and third conference title in the L4 years. The 2009 group was the best of the bunch, however, evidenced by the 33.2-to-17.2 scoring differential. Senior and four-year starting quarterback Dan LeFevour plays his last game for Central Michigan. Troy is again the Sun Belt champ and comes in with a 9-3 SU and 8-4 ATS mark. The Trojans have played in three prior bowl games, going 1-2 SU and ATS, including 3-0 going OVER the total.

Coach Butch Jones took the Central Michigan football program to new heights. He won't be around to fully enjoy the fruits of his labor.

With the first national ranking in their history but without the coach who led them there, the No. 25 Chippewas will face Sun Belt Conference champion Troy on Wednesday night at the GMAC Bowl in Mobile, Ala.

Central Michigan (11-2) is champion of the Mid-American Conference for the third time in four seasons, with the last two titles coming under Jones. The coach posted a 27-13 record in his three seasons, marked by a spread offense that averaged 32.6 points during his tenure and exceeded 45 points five times in 2009. A 20-10 victory over Ohio in the MAC championship game vaulted the Chippewas into the Top 25 for the first time.

After that success, No. 4 Cincinnati came calling. Faced with a coaching vacancy after Brian Kelly left for Notre Dame, the Bearcats tabbed Jones for the job. Associate coach Steve Stripling will lead the Chippewas on an interim basis.

The Chippewas may no longer have the coach who installed their high-powered offense, but they still have the record-setting quarterback who makes it run. Four-year starter Dan LeFevour has thrown for 27 touchdowns and run for 14 to bring his career total to 147 TDs passing, rushing and receiving. That sets the major college football mark, previously shared by Hawaii's Colt Brennan and Texas Tech's Graham Harrell.

Having a record-setting receiver to target also helps. Senior Bryan Anderson has caught at least one pass in an NCAA record 53 consecutive games, and has 57 receptions for 700 yards and six touchdowns this season. Junior Antonio Brown, meanwhile, has team highs of 97 catches, 1,020 yards and nine scores.

Troy's offense may be able to keep pace. The Trojans (9-3) averaged 33.1 points - 41.2 over their last six games - en route to winning at least a share of the Sun Belt title for the fourth consecutive year.

They also boast a record-setting quarterback of their own. Senior Levi Brown ranks second in the nation with 322.3 passing yards per game, and his 3,868 yards were the most in the history of both Troy and the Sun Belt.

When Brown isn't throwing the ball, he's often handing it off to Shawn Southward. The running back ranked fifth in the nation among freshmen with 10 rushing touchdowns and gained 574 yards on 100 carries. He's taken some of the workload away from junior DuJuan Harris, whose production fell from 1,077 rushing yards in 2008 to 471.

Troy lost in overtime to Southern Miss in the New Orleans Bowl following last season. The Trojans earned their lone bowl victory in three tries in 2006, beating Rice at the New Orleans Bowl.

The Chippewas are 1-4 in bowl games, defeating Middle Tennessee in the 2006 Motor City Bowl. This is the first time they've ventured out of state in postseason play since 1994, when they fell to UNLV in the Las Vegas Bowl.

This is the first meeting between these schools.

GMAC BOWL Series Trend: Since the well-known Marshall 64-61 come from behind win over East Carolina in 2001, the GMAC Bowl results have been downright ugly. Favorites have won and covered the last seven games of the series, with an average winning margin of 30.3 PPG. The last three installments have seen Conference USA on the winning end over the MAC. The last four games have gone UNDER the total, simply since the losing team has only produced 10.0 PPG.