It is either a testament to -- or indictment of -- Tim Tebow's Heisman candidacy that he remains on the radar.
In the latest HeismanPundit.com straw poll, Tebow plummeted to 4th place. Positioned differently, he is still in the Top 5.
His numbers are a shadow of 2007 -- or even 2008. His performance last weekend against Mississippi State was the worst of his career.
And yet... Florida is 7-0, ranked No. 1 in the country and firmly in control of its own BCS destiny.
That makes Tebow this year's Torretta or Dorsey or fill-in-USC-or-Notre-Dame-QB-here -- the candidate who gets to be near the top of the list simply for being the QB of the No. 1 team in the country.
(Tebow's reputation obviously helps, and I'm not dismissing that.)
Here's the big point: Tebow has hit the low point of his season -- and career. And he's STILL in 4th place.
What does that mean?
It means that when Tebow and Florida turn it around -- as soon as this weekend vs. Georgia -- Tebow will skyrocket back up the rankings...
...Helped in part because voters seem stuck to find any candidate they feel really strongly about.
Look at who is ahead of Tebow: Among QBs, he is topped by Jimmy Clausen (Notre Dame novelty) and Colt McCoy (still the favorite, I think). Ingram at the top is a wash, because voters will give the edge to the player on the team that wins the Alabama-Florida SEC title game.
There are 5 regular-season games left for Tebow -- more than enough time to make people forget about this stalled start. (After all, he was No. 1 in the straw poll as recently as two weeks ago, when hints of Florida's offensive issues were foreshadowed.)
And that doesn't even consider the SEC title game -- in which a big performance by Tebow could make voters forget how they were thinking about him on, say, October 27.