[photopress:ttebow2.jpg,full,alignleft]FORT WALTON BEACH, Fla – University of Florida quarterback Tim Tebow continues his collection of national football awards as today he has been named the winner of the 2008 Wuerffel Trophy by the All Sports Association of Fort Walton Beach. Named after 1996 Heisman Trophy Quarterback Danny Wuerffel, the award is presented to the college football player who best combines exemplary community service with athletic and academic achievement. Tebow joins past winners Rudy Niswanger (LSU-2005), Joel Penton (Ohio State.-2006) and Paul Smith (Tulsa-2007) as the 4th winner of the prestigious award.
“We’re excited and thrilled to have Tim be the winner of an award that exemplifies the three characteristics of athletics, academics and community service and joining the fraternity of the other fine winners, “ said All Sports Association President Mike Coupe’ this morning. “He’s in great company. We’re just very excited to have him as this year’s winner.”
Tebow’s on the field accomplishments include being the only sophomore ever to win the Heisman Trophy, the Sullivan Award, the Davey O’Brien Award and the Maxwell Award (2007). Also, he is the only player in NCAA history to rush and pass for at least 20 touchdowns in a season, ranks first in Florida’s record book for the most career rushing touchdowns, has thrown for 6,159 yards and 65 touchdowns in three seasons, while having also gained 1,928 yards on the ground with 43 rushing touchdowns, both school records by a Florida quarterback.
Academically, he carries a 3.70 GPA, earning the honor of 2007 SEC Academic Honor Roll recipient. Tebow was also the second sophomore football player in school history to earn ESPN.com Academic All-American first-team honors in the 2007 season. Thanks to Tebow, Florida became one of only three schools to have a Heisman winner receive Academic All-American honors in the same year.
Tebow’s community service is equally impressive. Through his involvement with the University of Florida’s “Goodwill Gators” program, he has made many hospital visits and attended numerous community service functions. In addition, Tebow takes it upon himself to schedule his own hospital visits back in his hometown of Jacksonville, Fla. during his off weekends. He spent his 2008 spring break as a missionary in the Philippines as part of the Bob Tebow Evangelical Association. In April 2008, Tebow organized a flag football tournament to raise awareness for orphans in Gainesville and around the world. Over the next 2 months, he spoke at a business conference in Croatia, was invited by the International Mission Board (IMB) to speak to missionaries in South Asia, and spent time speaking at several prisons across the state of Florida.
“To win the SEC championship is a dream come true and then to get this award — Danny’s award is just great — it’s very humbling,” said Tebow when notified by Danny Wuerffel that he had won the award. “I want to take this platform that I have by being a quarterback and being at the University of Florida and use that to help people and use that to share my message about helping people and about helping people’s lives. That’s the reason I think I’ve been blessed to have the success that I’ve had.”
“Without question, you completely deserve this award and I am so excited to announce that you’re this year’s winner,” said Danny Wuerffel to Tebow this morning when notifying him that he had won the award. Wuerffel then added, “It was just amazing to see the success that Tim has had in all three aspects of this award: academically, athletically and in the community and service to other people. He’s just an amazing young man, an amazing football player. I’m just so incredibly proud to have him (as the winner). It’s funny how things go back and forth. Maybe one day my son will win the Tebow Trophy.”
“A leader’s true measurement is if he has the ability to raise the level of play of everybody around him, and Tim’s as good as anyone I’ve ever been around,” Florida Coach Urban Meyer said when asked about Tebow winning the award named after Wuerffel. “Danny Wuerffel is obviously a great name around here. I never had the ability to coach Danny, but his history and what people say about him, I’m not sure they ever thought there would be another Danny Wuerffel, but there’s a guy here that’s awful close. Tim will go down as one of the great players ever and one of the great players ever to play the game of football.”
The 2008 Wuerffel Trophy will be presented to Tim Tebow at the All Sports Association’s 40th Annual Awards Banquet on February 20, 2009.
For more information on the Wuerffel Trophy, contact Tom Brassell at (850) 585-5512 or visit www.wuerffeltrophy.org.