It’s been an interesting few years for Tim Tebow: two college football championships, a Heisman Trophy, a first-round pick in the NFL Draft, an unlikely winning streak as a starting quarterback, a surprise overtime playoff victory, a trade, a release, backing up Tom Brady, another release and, ultimately, unemployment. Now he has found a home in the broadcast booth. ESPN said today that the 26-year-old has inked a multiyear deal as an analyst for its new SEC Network, which airs games in the conference in which he starred at the University of Florida. He will make his debut during the network’s pregame coverage of the Vizio BCS National Championship on January 6. Tebow’s main focus will be SEC Nation, the traveling pregame show that will premiere with Texas A&M at South Carolina on August 28, but ESPN said he also will contribute to “SportsCenter,” ESPN Radio and the network’s Heisman coverage. Just in case, the network noted that “Tebow’s role with ESPN will not preclude him from continuing to pursue opportunities in the NFL.” But his time likely will be better spent practicing that new vocation rather than waiting by the phone.
Tim Tebow officially signed on today to be spokesman for TiVo. It’s the latest in a series of high-profile endorsement deals for the publicity magnet/NFL quarterback since WME snagged him from rival CAA in February to rep his off-field activities: public appearances, speaking engagements, TV, film, books, and his foundation. This video is his first official act as “brand ambassador” for the DVR-maker (insert joke here about how Tebow has more time to watch TV these days stuck behind starter Mark Sanchez on the New York Jets bench):
EXCLUSIVE: When CAA hired football agent Jimmy Sexton last year, he brought in potential marketing powerhouse Tim Tebow for endorsements. But now the Denver Broncos starting quarterback has hired rival Hollywood agency WME for all off-field activities: public appearances, speaking engagements, TV, film, books, the works, even his foundation. With his unorthodox football skills, very public religious devotion, and incredible team success (they made it far in this past season’s playoffs), Tebow has attracted tons of praise, criticism, and attention from the sports world and national media. His NFL sports jersey is a bestseller. And his persona has already been lampooned on Saturday Night Live.
He played college football at the University of Florida, winning the Heisman Trophy in 2007 and appearing on BCS National Championship-winning teams in 2007 and 2009. After graduating, he was drafted by the Broncos as the 25th overall pick in 2010. Tebow is known as a dual-threat quarterback, adept at both rushing and passing. Plus he’s eye candy.
2ND UPDATE: NBC tells me: “There is a problem with the servers. They are working on it. This is impacting all of NBCUniversal, not just NBC.com.”
UPDATE: NBC incompetents can’t get their embed codes to work. And you wonder why they’re always in last place even with new ownership?
CBS scored a ratings bonanza with the AFC wildcard game featuring the Tim Tebow-led Denver Broncos against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Tebow’s overtime heroics that stunned the Steelers and gave Broncos a 29-23 victory scored a 25.9/43 overnight household rating, up 38% from last year’s 18.8/37 for Baltimore-Kansas City. The Pittsburgh-Denver game, which peaked at a 31.6/46, was the highest-rated wildcard game in the metered markets on any network since 1988 (26.7; Seattle-Houston on NBC; 1/3/88).
It was probably Saturday Night Live‘s strongest skit last week, somewhat inexplicably buried in the last slot before the end of the show. But, if by airing the Tim Tebow sketch at 12:20 AM SNL was hoping to avoid controversy, it didn’t succeed. The skit, in which God asks the Denver Broncos quarterback, who openly professes his faith, to “tone it down a notch,” has gone viral. Yesterday it drew fire from televangelist Pat Robertson, who called it an example of “anti-Christian bigotry” in the country “that is just disgusting.” “If this had been a Muslim country and they had done that, and had Muhammad doing that stuff, you would have found bombs being thrown off,” Robertson said during an appearance on the Christian Broadcast Network, posted online by Mediaite.com. Robertson called Tebow “a wonderful human being” who should be “applauded” for talking publicly about his religious faith. Robertson was not alone in its criticism of the sketch. Additionally, Fox News’ Bob Beckel called the parody “despicable” for its portrayal of Jesus Christ. Here are clips of the SNL skit and Robertson’s reaction: