Don't Miss All of Tim Tebow's Last Year

Look, I get it. No really, I do.

You're tired of hearing about the Florida Gators by now. Everyone's crowning them No. 1, some say they're going to be among the best ever, and it's only mid-August. They haven't even played a single game yet.

Most of all, you're tired of hearing about Tim Tebow. You heard him called "the Chosen One" his freshman year, endured a season of hype as he won the Heisman his sophomore year, and it was even worse last year, his junior. The Tebowisms, the throwing mechanics lab, the charity work, the Promise, and worst of all, the fawning commentators like Gary Danielson and Thom Brennanmen. I'm a die hard Gator fan, and even I get tired of seeing the promise speech from after last year's Ole Miss loss over and over. You're sick of it all, and now you have to go through another season of it.

I can remember going through that with Peyton Manning, and my dad can easily recount going through it with Herschel Walker. Everyone can probably remember it with Bush and Leinart not that long ago. Football is won by teams but media attention is won by individuals. Some are going to be propped up more than others. All of those guys I just mentioned, from Walker to Manning to Leinart, were great players though. If you could erase the uniform colors and block out the chattering masses, they were a ton of fun to watch.

I know that Tebow Fatigue has probably gotten to you. I urge you though: at least one point this season, don't let it.

Tim Tebow is certainly one of the most unique players to come through college football in recent times. There are plenty of mobile quarterbacks who come through the game, but none are used as a power runner as Tebow is. None have the instinct to try to run over a safety like Tebow does.

It's as much a factor of the coach as it is the player, I think. If Tebow had chosen to attend other schools high on his list like Alabama or Michigan, do you think Mike Shula or Lloyd Carr would run him up the middle so often? Probably not. Urban Meyer's spread-meets-Woody Hayes mentality allowed for Tebow to be both the quarterback and power back that he naturally is.

Meyer might have other power back quarterbacks, like 2009 freshman Jordan Reed for instance, but none will be quite like Tebow. One player having both the ability and willingness to take on a linebacker head on and also complete 65% of passes doesn't come along every year. Even though Reed will likely be a changeup back for John Brantley in 2010 as Tebow was for Chris Leak in 2006, he's not wired the same way. He probably won't be running over a LaRon Landry-type player, as Tebow did in '06.

Watching Tebow do his thing is just plain fun, if you allow it to be. It would be very easy for non-Gator fans to try to shut out the voices and ignore him as much as possible in 2009, but that would be a mistake.

Pick a game, just one game. Make it be when Florida is playing a team you don't like, so for Bama fans, pick Tennessee-Florida. Just in that one game, try not to hate him. Mute Verne and Gary if you need to, but at least once, appreciate who he is and how he plays.

Before and after that, hate away. Turn off ESPN and avoid Gator-themed links on the Internet. Do whatever you have to do.

But don't miss all of Tim Tebow's last year. It may be decades before we see another one quite like him.

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