Jeremy Lin: The Real Difference Between Lin and Tebow

John SmithContributor IIIFebruary 20, 2012

NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 19:  Jeremy Lin #17 of the New York Knicks reacts after shooting a three pointer against the Dallas Mavericks at Madison Square Garden on February 19, 2012 in New York City. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images)
Chris Trotman/Getty Images

Jeremy Lin and Tim Tebow share many similarities. Both are religious, hard-working, and underdogs who have had brief stints of glory in sports. Both were college stars, but also overlooked in the draft.

The big similarity, is that both athletes are popular. Tebow carried Denver, Christianity, and the NFL's fan bases on his back. Lin has touched the Knicks, Christianity, Asians, and the NBA. So what's the difference? We are about to find out:

Tim Tebow was blatantly Christian. Controversies over his gospel eye-black stole the show in College Football. Every rush, pass, step, or interview Tim Tebow did was about God. Everything. He had a different throwing motion, and uniqueness to the Quarterback position. He brought Denver from a troubled franchise to a playoff caliber team.

The Broncos knocked off Dick LeBeau's defense in overtime at Mile High Stadium on an 80-yard touchdown catch and run from Tebow to electrifying wide receiver Demaryius Thomas that sent Pittsburgh packing.

What Tebow brought, was love and hate. Broncos fans raved about him, thinking a miracle was sent to Colorado. NFL fans were on board with the underdog, as a new face in the NFL limelight.

However, he brought hate. A lot of hate to sports.

Tim Tebow was disregarded and mocked by many fans, as some called him a "disgrace to the game." He received threats, hate mail, and was questioned by Denver's strength of schedule.

Skip Bayless from ESPN's "First Take" joined his side. Bayless, another loved/hated celebrity, got massive attention from the former Florida Gator. The "All He Does Is Win" song got over a million views on YouTube in a week. Some liked Tebow, but most disliked him.

Jeremy Lin doesn't carry hate. The former Harvard Crimson Point Guard struggled after college. Lin slept on his brother's bed in New York. The security guards thought he was a trainer, not the future superstar for the New York Knicks. New York fans raved about him.

The Asian-American population is bewildered by his talent. NBA fans are impressed. Kids are developing a new role model. Last but not least, even non-NBA fans are joining in on the fun.

I'm not a Tim Tebowhhater. I root for any underdog, whether the Broncos QB or Knicks PG. For Lin, you simply cannot dislike the kid. He's too humble, unselfish, and one of the best stories sports has ever seen. 

Tim Tebow was a good story.

Jeremy Lin is a great story.