Florida, without a doubt, will ride high on the surf of the college polls throughout this season, barring unforeseen injury or lackluster play.
One of the few teams who have a shot at knocking them off their tide is Georgia. They play each other in the 2009 version of the "Greatest Outdoor Cocktail Party" set in Jacksonville, Fla. on October 31st.
Teams have certainly already begun preparing for Tim Tebow and the Gators. A scary proposition for any Defensive Coordinator.
The Heisman Trophy winner has an uncanny way of making beautiful pregame defensive schemes look as ugly as Henry Waxman when the day is done.
No matter how easy pundits say the Florida schedule is for the 2009 campaign, without a doubt, every opponent has the date with Florida circled in red.
Coaches, players, and trainers are in the process of gathering any scrap of paper, newsreel, or backhanded comment that can be used to rally the team for inspiration.
Florida has a huge target on their backs, and the quarterback is in the bulls eye.
Unfortunately, he is the center of the target for more reasons than being the leader of the No.1 team in the nation.
Some would like to see him moved from center stage because of his personal testimony, and willingness to share the gospel whenever given the opportunity. Many men in this world are vile, and some folks would like to see him fail simply because he is a child of God.
May it never be.
I'm an Alabama fan, but I love Tim Tebow. The man is a competitor. He has an inner strength that is uncommon in the college athlete; and he is unashamed to give glory to the transcendent power from which it originates.
He is God-centered.
He is a warrior, bearing the armor of God. He is wrapped in the belt of truth and the breastplate of righteousness; and he is walking in the sandals of the gospel of Christ.
He dons the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit which is the word of God.
He may not be original, but he is the real deal. Hardship may come his way, but he will depend on the Lord for deliverance.
For this reason, I wish him all the success that God has planned for his life. I hope he goes through the 2009 season without injury, and I would like to see him hoist the Heisman Trophy for a second time. He is a worthy competitor and an excellent role model for younger athletes.
If, by chance, the boys in Crimson get the chance to redeem last year's defeat at the hands of the mighty Gators, I will pray that Tebow gets the chance to lean on the God of mercy for comfort after the loss. He should be able to get over it just fine.
Be reminded that God has warriors on both sides of the field. Some may not be as vocal or have as much success on the field as measured by worldly standards—wins. But they are nonetheless warriors in the same cause. Take exceptional pride in those special players that roam your home turf and set a shining example of God-centeredness on your campus.
I take great pleasure in attending games for the worldly cause of shouting at the top of my lungs for my team. Roll tide roll! Rammer Jammer Yellow Hammer. Sweet Home Alabamer.
But I am humbled and speechless, when I see competitors from both teams unite after the game in brotherly love, and give honor to God the father after a brutal battle on the gridiron.
Do your part.
Be compelled by the power of faith and grace. Seek out these special student athletes and thank them for their courage and faith. This will strengthen and encourage them to stay the path. Don the armor yourself and be a respectable fan throughout the season, particularly when your team is host to the contest.
Thanks to God for the memories. Thanks to those who keep the game in perspective and band together in humility after the game to show love for one another. It would be an incredible sight to see home team tailgaters show honor to visitors, and for visitors alike to show honor to the home team fans before and after the games this year.
I hearby pledge that I will do my part.
Players like Tebow should make all SEC fans proud to be a part of the greatest conference in college football.
It's OK to pull for you team and pray for your warriors to defeat the giant that Tebow has become. But when you do this, consider doing it with dignity and respect.
Born in America by good fortune, raised southern by the grace of God. May we all have the opportunity to experience great SEC football at home and away.
Let's all do our part as a fans in this great conference by showing respect to each other when we cross paths during the season.