Some things matter more than football. It would be hard to believe that when over 850 people attended SEC Media Days, but all the attention and hoopla surrounding football can serve a higher purpose.
Just ask Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow.
The junior Florida quarterback is often portrayed as Superman. He performs circumcisions while on mission trips, and still has time to win football games.
But Tebow keeps winning in perspective.
â€œIf I can change a kid’s life for the better, that’s much more important to me than going out there and beating Georgia or Florida State or whatever team it is,â€ Tebow said.
Tebow spends a lot of time talking about being an example. It hasnâ€™t changed since he was a homeschooled highly sought after football recruit.
Even his name was selected with a deeper meaning. Tebow was named for the Apostle Paulâ€™s young friend, Timothy, a name that means â€œhonoring God,â€ according to a 2006 Baptist Press report.
According to that same Baptist Press report, Tebow began years ago visiting the Philippines to lead evangelistic crusades and minister to orphans.
True to form, Tebow completed the annual summer mission trip again this year. But Tebow didnâ€™t stop there. He went on more mission trips. This is Tim Tebow that we are talking about.
â€œWe had three breaks. For those three breaks I went to the Philippines, Croatia and Thailand on three mission trips,â€ Tebow said. â€œAll three of those places I got to do a lot of very neat things, preaching in prisons, in schools, in hospitals, in marketplaces.â€
And why spend time preaching and working with the poor? After all, Tebow is a superstar. His fans shower him with adulation, and more than a few indecent or â€œinappropriateâ€ proposals.
â€œThe reason I do it is because it’s more important than football to me,â€ Tebow said. â€œDoing those things, taking my platform as a football player and using it for good, using it to be an influence and change people’s lives, that’s more important than football to me.
â€œI can take what I do in playing football as a game and change people’s lives with it. That’s why football is such a great game. That’s kind of why I do the things, preaching in prisons, doing those different things, trying to take advantage of that platform that God has blessed me with.â€
Tebow called football his platform for doing good. It is his bully pulpit. His chance to influence others; his chance to do something positive.
â€œI want to do everything in my power that football gives me to influence as many people as I can for the good because that’s gonna mean so much more when it’s all said and done than just playing football and winning championships,â€ Tebow said.
Tebow wants a legacy beyond football. It is an amazingly good perspective for someone at the pinnacle of college football.
But it shouldnâ€™t shock us. This is Tim Tebow after all.