Monday, November 30, 2009
@osgators President Obama wants the Gators to win the national title, tackle Marcus Gilbert said. His dad was a secret service agent
@GatorBenPBP Marcus Gilbert, whose dad is in the secret service, says President Obama is "rooting for us all the way"
@GatorBenPBP Tebow says he feels "no effects" from his concussion, "especially not for this game"
@GatorBenPBP Tebow on #Gators OC Steve Addazio: "I'm really proud of Coach Addazio. It wasn't easy, what he's done, coming in with a lot of pressure."
@osgators Tebow: “If you have to settle for field goals in a game like this, it’s going to be tough to win. "
@osgators #Tebow said #Gators might use jump pass during stretch run if the timing's right.
@GatorBenPBP Mike Pouncey on Terrance Cody: "He's probably the biggest load this year. He's a tough dude to block."
@GatorBenPBP Ahmad Black: "There ain't too much rah-rah. It's just get out there and play, there's so much at stake"
@GatorBenPBP Urban on why the #Gators have played better over the past month: "I'm convinced the guys see the light at the end of the tunnel"
@GatorBenPBP Urban on the FSU game: "We had a big recruiting day"
Andy Staples has a word or two for the Tebow haters, and we couldn't agree more.
We get it. We do. You hate it when we write so glowingly about Tebow. You hate it when we mention that he might be one of the greatest college football players ever.
All the anti-Tebow sentiment is reminiscent of a 2004 profile of U2 singer Bono that Chuck Klosterman wrote for Spin. Klosterman couldn't wrap his brain around whether Bono's saintly aura was just a façade created for and by the media or the inner glow of a genuinely excellent human being. That led to Klosterman asking an interesting question, the gist of which was this: Whether it's genuine or a performance, does it matter as long as the saintly act was committed?
Tebow's on- and off-field exploits have landed under a similar microscope. Sure, he scores a ton of rushing touchdowns, but they're mostly one-yard runs. That's a fine argument, except that plenty of other players have been handed the ball on the 1 only to run into a wall. Sure, he raises money for his dad's orphanage in the Philippines, but he does it only to make himself look better. Even if that were true, how many orphanages have you raised money for this year?
Whether you consider him genuine or fake, Tebow, at the end of the day, is a Heisman Trophy-, SEC- and BCS-title winning quarterback who goes to class, goes to church and circumcises people less fortunate than him. More people should be so intolerable.
Alabama fans are afraid he might just be, again:
When last we left them, the Florida Gators had just finished breaking Alabama's heart in the 2008 SEC Championship Game for one reason:
Tim Tebow was too good.
He hasn't gone backward since.
Did you watch him dismantle Florida State on Senior Day?
I did. Made me wanna blog.
Here are 10 first impressions of the rematch, the game to end all games, the 2009 SEC Championship Game between Alabama and Florida:
Click through here for the list.
Photo: Chris Graythen/Getty Images
Tebow and Nelson on preparing for Alabama:
"Jermaine Cunningham probably said it best," Meyer said. "He put up both arms and said, 'I'm living the dream.' "
Tebow, though, had a different message.
"He said, 'All this means nothing if we don't come out next week and play as well as we can,' " Nelson said. "Pretty much just said, 'Our job's not done. Time to do your business next week.' "
Sunday, November 29, 2009
A few semesters before Tim Tebow arrived on campus, we were taking the bus to UF every weekday. As human nature goes, everyone had their own designated seat, and ours was next to a lady who worked for UF's Physical Plant and her seat was upfront opposite the bus driver.
Every MWF morning they'd have a conversation as if the rest of us didn't really exist. Then one morning we, along with a few other riders, noticed she hadn't been there for a while, but didn't really have the courage to ask the bus driver why. One guy finally mumbled something about her, and the bus driver nonchalantly answered that she was visiting her sister.
Another week later the physical plant lady reappeared. She sat in her front seat quietly, fighting back tears holding a letter sized envelope crammed full of small bills. Half way to campus she broke down at a stop light and got up and gave the bus driver the envelope. Neither said a word, and he pushed the envelope quickly out of sight. After she regained her composure, the bus driver asked her how her sister was. Her reply was that she got to see her before she died, and she broke down again and began to thank the bus driver for lending her the money and apologized that she wished she could have repaid him sooner.
A week or so later, on the ride home from campus, some guy asked the same driver why he was a bus driver, and his answer has stayed with us and it was something like this:
"I pick people up and take them to work, and you students to class. Then I pick you up and take you home. You students pass through here, but the people I take to work, they're my friends. I like seeing my friends."
It might surprise you, but the most influential person at UF for us is not Tim Tebow, but that unnamed RTS bus driver that to this day is still driving his friends to work and bringing students along for the ride. When Tim Tebow graduates this fall and leaves Gainesville in the spring, the bus driver will be at work in Gainesville and we'll still be trying to get a seat up front. Why? Because he first demonstrated, in a very simple but profound way, what a selfless act of compassion is like outside of the usual charity/church/fundraiser environment.
Most of the stories written about the game this week all centered on Tim Tebow and the influence he has had on and off the field. But the thing that pervades each story is that Tebow's influence was never what he said, it has been through what he did. This week David Nelson said of Tebow, "He used to get guys to go do things with him. Once they stepped out of the bubble, they started to enjoy it."
And that's how you'll be influential too. Take someone along for the ride with you, and share your life with them.
"But I'm not like Tebow!" you might say, or even murmur to yourself. Few of us are. But someone who is possibly the opposite of Tebow has been as influential as Tebow, perhaps even more so, and became so because he had little talent at all.
Juan Mann is the Free Hugs guy, and after his parents' divorce he found himself alone and confused, and he had no particular talent, so he decided to do what he could and that was to give strangers a hug.
"If I could sing, or dance I would have been out there busking. Or trying to be a comedian," Mann said of himself. What began as a single day on a shopping street in Sydney (Australia) eventually spurred a world wide movement that reached the University of Florida campus. Juan Mann, the self described talentless, jobless, Aussie loner indirectly gave Tim Tebow a hug. Just look at the picture above.
You don't have to be the most decorated quarterback in the history of college football to be influential. You just have to be able to identify someone else's need, and be willing to meet it and expect nothing in return. When you do that, you'll become the "hero" in that person's life. You won't influence them by what you say, but by what you do and how you do it. And helping others is worth it. Because no amount of money can buy a hug, and no technology can replicate one.
The warm, happy feeling of having helped someone else will not only be worth the effort, it is even more satisfying than fame, trophies, or even national championships. Just ask Tebow. Or even your campus bus driver.
Saturday, November 28, 2009
Hebrews 12: 1-2 1Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
(More tomorrow Gators! It was a great night and we hope you enjoyed it where you were!)
And if you haven't sent us your eye black photos, please do! We'll post them tomorrow!
Photo: Sam Greenwood/Getty Images
Proverbs 27:2 Let another praise you, and not your own mouth
Ben Volin has an excellent piece on what Tebow has meant not only to football and UF, but to the State of Florida as a whole. Below are some of the quotes Volin gathered in writing the piece and more that we've added.
CHARLIE CRIST, GOVERNOR OF FLORIDA
“I’m a big fan, not only of his athletic ability, to be honest, but moreso the kind of character that he exudes. I think he’s a great role model not only for people throughout the state of Florida, but for people throughout the world. He’s just an amazing young man and I have enormous respect for him.
He just exudes humility and kindness and compassion and it’s easy for me, even as a ‘Nole, to speak in such glowing terms about such a remarkable young man.
I think his impact is more far-reaching than you or I will ever know. If (a political career) is something he would want to pursue, I’d be more than honored to try to help him in some small way. Our state and our nation needs great leaders like him.”
JEREMY FOLEY, UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA ATHLETIC DIRECTOR
“Certainly having Tim in this program for four years has meant a lot in a lot of different ways. You can point to the success on the field and Heisman Trophies and all those type of things, but more important, the type of person he is, the way he has treated people for four years, the way he has demonstrated so many great qualities, whether it’s leadership or faith or kindness or gentleness or honesty or enthusiasm or passion, that’s why he’s successful. He has all those things, and he lives them every single day.
His work ethic was obvious and his passion for the game, and his passion for life — I don’t want to say I was amazed by it, but I certainly admired it. I love the way he’s treated people. The demands on Tim Tebow are ridiculous. And yet he always has time for people and always has a smile on his face.
It’s been a privilege to watch him play.”
KIRK HERBSTREIT, ESPN COLLEGE FOOTBALL ANALYST
“He’s an ambassador. He’s been the face of this sport for the last three years and you could not hand-pick a better person to be the face of this sport. The whole way through, nothing but class, and an amazing representative of the university.”
MIKE SLIVE, SOUTHEASTERN CONFERENCE COMMISSIONER
“In the long history of the Southeastern Conference there have been many great football players, several of whom have distinguished themselves in different ways - on the field, in the classroom, or in the community, but seldom has one football student-athlete distinguished himself on the field, in the classroom and in the world community the way Tim Tebow has.
He is an extraordinary young man by any definition and has brought credit to his family, his faith, the University of Florida and to the Southeastern Conference. He embodies the mission of the Conference, which is to provide our student-athletes with a quality education, leading to graduation, and the opportunity to compete at the highest levels of intercollegiate athletic competition.”
URBAN MEYER, FLORIDA FOOTBALL COACH
“Describe Tebow’s character? I need a thesaurus. Impeccable is a great word.
The one thing about Tim is the unselfishness of his mission outside of college football is unparalleled. It’s almost like selflessness is a cool thing — kids realizing to give back, and if you can brighten someone’s day, you do it. And the impact he’s made on this team is phenomenal, and this coaching staff. It’s more noticeable behind closed doors than probably what you guys see, and it’s a significant impact.
I don’t know if there will ever be another one like him, certainly not in my life time. I think he’s the best ambassador I’ve ever seen of college football.”
SHELLEY MEYER, WIFE OF URBAN MEYER
"My girls want to go to the Philippines with him," said Shelley Meyer, the UF coach's wife. "I wouldn't trade one second of these last four years. What he has meant to our team, to our program, to my family spiritually, it's priceless."
RYAN STAMPER, FLORIDA SENIOR LINEBACKER
“I don’t think a lot of people know how much pressure he’s under with the media, the fans — can’t even walk to class, can’t walk outside. My hat’s off to him, because a lot of guys can’t handle the pressure.
Especially with the charity thing — I don’t know if Florida was real heavy on all the charity work until he really came. What he does just kind of motivated us as a team to want to get involved with certain charities.”
EDDIE GILLEY, DIRECTOR OF THE BAPTIST COLLEGIATE MINISTRIES AT THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
“He’s been extremely important for Christians, as sort of a model of how you want to live our your faith and not be embarrassed of your faith. He’s one of those guys that you look at and go, ‘That’s what all believers ought to be, whether they play football or not.’”
DAN MULLEN, HEAD COACH OF MSU AND TEBOW'S FORMER COACH
"One of the biggest things I learned from Tim is that if you have the ability to make a difference in someone's life, it's your obligation to do that," Mullen said. "That's profound knowledge from a 20-year-old young man."
MARK RICHT, HEAD COACH OF UGA
"I admire Tim for his ability to stand up and be who is, and not be ashamed of his faith and beliefs," Georgia coach Mark Richt said. "You talk about how many people he affected in the league, but Tim has made an impact nationally and internationally. I'm proud of him."
ROLANDO MCCLAIN, ALABAMA LINEBACKER
"He (Tebow) walked up to his defense, says something and then they go and get two or three sacks," Alabama linebacker Rolando McClain said. "I'm like, 'Man, what did he say?' He's crazy, but he's a great leader."
DAN MESA, GATOR FAN
Having earnestly followed Gator football for more that 40 years, I am truly relishing the greatest era the program has ever experienced. Certainly a big part of that success has been the playing ability, competitiveness and leadership that Tim Tebow has provided during the last four years. It's hard to believe that he will play his last game in The Swamp this Saturday. He will go down as one of the greatest players in the history of college football. It has been a privilege to have witnessed that.
Beyond his athletic achievements, I am most proud of Tim for being a great ambassador for The University of Florida. His sincere, selfless devotion to help others and the daily demonstration of his faith is an inspiration. We should all be proud of him! He is a leader, a humanitarian, and a great Gator.
STEVE CRIDER, FATHER AND GATOR FAN
These last four years Tebow and the Gators brought me and my family many happy weekends and positive thoughts while fighting through my daughter, Kelsey's, life threatening kidney disease and three challenging transplants (2 of which failed, number 3 succeeded this past summer). Tebow and the Gators are a shining example of staying positive, upbeat and persistent in one's goals. Never give up, always look for the upside and remain true to your beliefs that things will work out for the better IF you remain true to your family, team and/or self. Tebow and the Gators stand for what's right about college football and I'm one proud dad of Kelsey for winning her battle and of the Gators for winning most of theirs.
GatorNation - be proud we've had Tebow and his team these last four and be proud the next weeks and month, "in all kinds of weather"....Go Gators!!
BOB TEBOW, TIM TEBOW'S DAD
"He's making missions cool at the University of Florida," Bob Tebow said. "I've had so many people come up to me and say, 'I've never been prouder to be a Gator.' There are a lot of wholesome Christians out there who want the University of Florida to be known for more than a beer school."