Tim Tebow is returning to college football.
It isn't exactly the comeback he had in mind, but the former Florida Gators and Denver Broncos starting quarterback will officially join the SEC Network, according to Nate Scott of USA Today.
The two-time SEC Champion will join a new show on the SEC Network called "SEC Nation" as an analyst. Tebow confirmed the reports as he tweeted his feelings about the situation on his official account:
I am so excited that ESPN has given me this incredible opportunity. When I was six years old I fell in love with the game of football and...— Tim Tebow (@TimTebow) December 30, 2013
…while I continue to pursue my dream of playing quarterback in the NFL, this is an amazing opportunity to be a part of…— Tim Tebow (@TimTebow) December 30, 2013
…the unparalleled passion of college football and the SEC.— Tim Tebow (@TimTebow) December 30, 2013
After being cut most recently by the New England Patriots, Tebow has been given offers by an Italian league team and KISS's Arena Football League team, but has yet to sign another contract in the NFL.
Tebow will begin his new position with ESPN starting on Jan. 6 as part of its coverage of the BCS Championship Game. While it certainly isn't what Tebow or his fans wanted, the return to college football as an analyst is the best decision for the 26-year-old quarterback.
During his, thus far, short four-year career in the NFL and four years with the Gators, Tebow proved he had an immense knowledge of the game. Though his physical play on the field at the NFL level was often criticized, his understanding of football at the college level led to him winning the 2007 Heisman Trophy.
Tebow's previous tweets revealed that he hasn't given up on his dream of once again becoming a starting quarterback in the NFL, and Adam Schefter of ESPN tweeted that there is a clause in his contract that kept his options open to returning to the league:
Tim Tebow signed for three years with ESPN. Left option open to pursue QB career.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 30, 2013
While the jokes about Tebow likely will not go away, the fact that he knows the game of football is not debatable. The former Gators quarterback who won not only the Heisman but also a national championship with the team, knows how the SEC and college football as a whole work.
Whether or not he ever returns to the NFL to pursue a career as a starting quarterback, his return to college football is not only a great decision for the SEC Network, but for Tebow's career as a whole.