Friday, November 13, 2009

Tebow-Sized Expectations

One of the biggest appeals of rooting for Tim Tebow is his clarity.

Does he care about scoring TDs? Does he care about setting records? Not really.

He cares about winning.

That other stuff? If it's a byproduct of winning games, it's a bonus. Otherwise, it's about winning.

He has an expectation that he and his team will win every game. And that expectation is transferred to fans, who project it back on Tebow and the team.

It is a relentless focus that has made Tebow -- go figure -- a winner. One of the greatest winners in college football history.

That's why we can talk all we want about the offensive play-calling or its productivity, but -- in the end -- it all comes down to wins.

That's why Tebow consistently comes back to: "We're 9-0." Or "We're 8-0." Or "We're 7-0." And so on... all the way back to "We're 1-0."

That's all that matters.

And so in this week's Yahoo-Tebow column that I wrote, I focus on re-focusing on what matters: Winning.

We can freak about how the offense looks. But what's the point? I suppose it's some fear that the offense will stall at the wrong moment and cost the team a game -- cost the team a win.

Cost the team a championship.

But there has been no actual evidence that the offense is costing the team that win or that championship.

You can credit that to the all-world D or great special teams or, yes, even opportunistic offense. But the fact is, this team hasn't lost a game this season.

There has been no reason to doubt our expectations.

And, therefore, this is the bargain: Fans can stop focusing on the "how" of short-term results, because -- in exchange -- Tebow and the team are going to deliver a championship.

Unfair expectations? Hardly.

In fact, I would argue that this is the rarest of all seasons: "Championship-or-bust" is not something to be taken for granted.

It is, actually, the most elevated state a team (or a fanbase) can reach: When nothing less than a national championship will satisfy the potential of the team.

It's not like Florida fans haven't been here before -- the 2007 basketball team had precisely the same expectations. And what made them so epic was that they fulfilled them.

Check out the column, and between the column and this post, leave your comments below. Am I being fair?

It feels like "Championship or Failure" is precisely the attitude Tebow has -- and wants fans to have. It was the premise of The Promise a year ago, and it obviously drives him this year.

(If you enjoyed this post and the Yahoo column, please see this complementary post over at It fleshes this issue out in a different way.)

1 comment:

  1. A wise man once said: "To be number one you don't have to be able to beat every team on every Saturday, you only have to be one point better than whoever you're playing THIS Saturday".

    All the people who say the offense is stuck in low gear needs to re-read that quote every day.

    Enjoy the ride people, and quit complaining.