Media’s Dire need for Tim Tebow to Succeed



The case of St. Tim Tebow is an interesting one. The media blatantly and obviously want him to succeed professionally. And I can’t think of any other case that comes even remotely close. If he doesn’t make it in the NFL, the mainstream football media will probably collectively commit suicide. I asked an expert on the topic, Clay Travis, if he could recall any other athlete who had the media acting as a de facto PR agent on their behalf.

By Paul M. Banks

Travis, who authored a chapter entitled “Tim Tebow is God” in his book “Dixieland Delight,” had this to say:

“Partly, I think that’s a function of how college athletes are treated relative to pro athletes. The college kids don’t get criticized on the same level. We’re in an era where college athletes can become more famous than ever before thanks to the proliferation of national television contracts. FYI, Tebow and Florida were on national television last year more than any NFL team. (Because of the regional television broadcasts in the NFL.)

I’ve argued that Tebow is already one of the ten most famous quarterbacks in the country even before he even plays in the NFL. The jersey sales numbers have proven that to be true.

The only other athlete that really comes to mind, for me, is Tyler Hansborough. I think you’ve got to consider the recipe for success:

a. play four years as a viable member of a team
b. your team has to be successful
c. you have to go to a major school in a major conference
d. you can’t get arrested

Combine those four, also, you may need to be white, and you’re going to get fawning coverage.

Later, I congratulated Travis on having the stones to ask Tebow the “are you saving himself for marriage” question at 2009 SEC Media Day. I also asked is there was any fallout from that question or the “Tebow drunk texting” incident- which is actually a myth and never occurred.tim-tebow-clay-travis

Some people hated me for asking it, but those people probably weren’t readers anyway. Some media hated me, but those people probably don’t have jobs anymore because their newspapers already sucked.

The most interesting media people were those who covered their mouths and shrieked in dismay.

“Who is this guy? No one’s ever heard of him!”

How can you be that out of touch?

I’ve got the most read column in the South, one of the most listened to radio shows in the country on the most successful sports station in the country in one of the biggest markets in the SEC, and I’ve sold more books than anyone who has written about college football in the past five years.

So either you’re right and no one has heard of me, or you’re so clueless you don’t even have any idea what people are actually consuming anymore. Either I’m asking the wrong questions and writing and talking about the wrong subjects or the market that continues to reward me with more readers and more listeners is wrong.

In this day and age, I’ll take the market.

As for the Tebow drunk texting story, that isn’t true. It’s on Wikipedia, right? It’s possible my Wikipedia page has more inaccuracies than any page on the site. I don’t even check it anymore.

I think people just assume anything they hear or read about me is true. The Internet’s the Wild West, I can handle it. After all, how much of Billy the Kid’s stories are actually true?

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