WATCH: Tim Tebow denies GOP convention speaking gig, encourages peace

Tim Tebow's reported addition to the speaking list for the upcoming Republican National Convention was huge news. It generated visceral reactions from fans and foes of both Tebow and presumptive GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump.

Apparently, Tebow's latest non-football role was news to him this morning.

The former Heisman Trophy-winning Florida and NFL quarterback jumped onto Instagram on Thursday night to deny the reports, simply referring to them as "a rumor." The New York Times had his name on the reported list of speakers, as did the Associated Press, but Tebow claims they were wrong.

Also on the list? UFC president Dana White and LPGA golfer Natalie Gublis.

Perhaps it was a wish list. Any presidential hopeful would be smart to have Tebow on their side, given his widespread reach in American culture in 2016. He understands his reach and even took his denial video as an opportunity to plead with fans to end quarrels and embrace a peaceful future. Tebow himself didn't even learn of the "rumors" until Thursday, he said, because he was doing work with his foundation the Philippines.

"Just got back from the Philippines, and I wake up this morning to find out that I'm speaking at the Republican National Convention. It's amazing how fast rumors fly and that's exactly what it is: a rumor," he said.

"My goal has always been to be able to make a difference in the biggest way possible, and if one day that's a political route, then that's what I'll do. But right now I really believe that's through my foundation and our amazing partners and fighting for kids that can't fight for themselves.

"But I love our country and I would do anything for America. And one of the things that I love most is it's one nation under God. And do you know what that means? It means that you matter, that God has a plan for your life and that every single person is significant. We all mater. So, let's come together on that; let's unite on that. Let's forget about our quarrels and our differences and let's come together on one nation under God -- that you matter, that he loves you and has a plan for your life. God bless you, and God bless America."

A video posted by Tim Tebow (@timtebow) on

CBS Sports Writer

Chip Patterson has spent his young career covering college sports from the Old North State. He's been writing and talking about football and basketball for CBS Sports since 2010. You may have heard him... Full Bio

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