Unlike many media outlets covering the sport of football, we didn’t feel compelled to mention that Tuesday was Tim Tebow’s birthday (is it December already?), or that he appears on the cover of the new GQ magazine.
But then Tebow addressed the situation on Thursday (the GQ thing, not his birthday), saying he wasn’t aware he’d be on the cover.
“Honestly, I didn’t even know until — actually probably most of [you] knew that I was on there before I knew, so it kind of was a shocker for me,” Tebow said in comments to the media, which were transcribed and distributed by the team. “It was something that I think I did maybe six years ago in college. Honestly the first time I heard [it] was when we were in the cafeteria and it was on ESPN. That’s when I found out, so it was kind of a shocker to me as well.”
It’s hardly obvious that the photos are outdated; the most controversial image appears to have Tebow in a crucifix pose, with the color dulled to the point where it creates the impression that the pants are Jet green and not Gator blue.
“Was I trying to do anything as far as the crucifix?” Tebow said. “Absolutely not. I mean, I don’t know — it was six years ago, I don’t even remember what I was doing, but I wasn’t trying to do anything like that though.”
The whole thing just seems odd. Though GQ surely retained the rights to use the six-year-old photos (otherwise, Team Tebow already would have unleashed legal hell on the magazine, Reebok-style), GQ has created the false impression that it conducted a recent photo shoot with Tebow when the truth is it didn’t. And the placement of his image on the cover implies that he was interviewed when the truth is he wasn’t.
The fact that GQ would bend reality just a bit (or more) demonstrates the power of Tebow. That said, there will be plenty of Tebowmaniacs who may be disappointed that they purchased the magazine under somewhat false pretenses.
Unfortunately, many of them won’t be returning it because they will have ripped out the page with the crucifix photo and framed it as the centerpiece of a Jobu-esque shrine.
(Photo credit: GQ.com)