HOOVER, Ala. -- At 4 p.m. Wednesday, the toothy grin that inspired a nation -- Gator Nation -- was still pasted (permanently?) to Tim Tebow's face. Those bright, happy eyes stared straight ahead through the tinted windows of a luxury SUV. That cheerful faceplate, robotic arm and limitless future being whisked to the airport.
|Even Urban Meyer sought out Tim Tebow's autograph following the QB's Heisman win. (Getty Images)|
"It's crazy," Trautwein said. "All these people here just to see him."
Something like it had happened before, hotel security explained. Bill and Hillary were here when they were presidents but they brought their own muscle. The Secret Service.
This time you were likely to get your hand slapped by the SEC's Tammy Wilson who is in charge of such things as keeping autograph hounds away from players and coaches. Last year, she and some helpers surrounded Nick Saban with a phalanx of humanity to escort him through the lobby and up the escalator to answer questions from 700 scraggly hacks.
Saban returns on Thursday. But from now on, the Wynfrey lobby might as well be measured by the Tebow Scale. As in: Saban arrived at the Wynfrey to face a crowd judged to be three-fourths of a Tebow. There were autograph seekers and just plain seekers of truth. If 22-year-old Chris Gregory, a Gator fan from nearby Hueytown, Ala., had spent any more time waiting for Tebow, he would have been judged to be jobless.
How long have you been here?
"Cause it's Tim Tebow."
Yeah, and ...
"He's a great Christian man, he's just humble and he's the Florida quarterback."
Just so we have our priorities straight.