Ft. Walton Beach – The All Sports Association is pleased to announce former Heisman Trophy winner and current SEC Network analyst Tim Tebow will return to the Emerald Coast as the keynote speaker for the 50th Anniversary Awards Banquet on February 15, 2019. Tebow was honored at the 2009 banquet as the fourth recipient of the Wuerffel Trophy, the major college football award presented by the Chick-fil-A Foundation at the All Sports Association banquet each year. The award honors the FBS college football player who best combines exemplary community service with athletic and academic achievement.
A two-time national champion and Heisman trophy winning quarterback at the University of Florida, Tebow was a first-round NFL draft pick who played three seasons as a member of the Denver Broncos, New York Jets and New England Patriots. He is currently signed to play professional baseball in the New York Mets minor league organization. Tebow is also a three-time New York Times best-selling author and released his latest best seller, This Is The Day, on September 25th, 2018.
All Sports President Lee Lewis said “there is no other athlete more fitting to serve as our speaker for the 50th anniversary banquet. Tim Tebow personifies the values the Association aims to recognize and support. Throughout his career and his life, he has exhibited a servant’s heart. His competitiveness, his passion, and his relationship with God are legendary. Tim was clearly at the top of our list and we are most grateful he has agreed to be part of our event.”
Until recently, Tebow’s ability to attend the banquet was uncertain due to his February schedule and work-out demands associated with spring training. “We agreed to make arrangements to get Tim in and out the same night as the banquet,” said Lewis. “Unfortunately, there will not be an opportunity for photos and autographs, and I hope our community will understand. This is the time of year when baseball players are locked into preparations for spring training. For him to attend our banquet is huge. I am not sure any other professional athlete could or would make such a sacrifice.”
Tebow was recently honored during the Florida-LSU game on Oct. 6 with his induction into the “Gator Ring of Honor.” There he joins Fort Walton Beach native Danny Wuerffel and four other UF greats. He stirred Gator fans in his acceptance remarks, saying, “I was born a Gator. I played as a Gator, and I will die a Gator.”
Lewis acknowledged former UF quarterback and fellow Heisman Trophy winner Danny Wuerffel was instrumental in getting Tebow to attend the banquet, adding “it’s difficult saying no to a guy like Danny.”
Tebow is known for his philanthropic activities through his Tim Tebow Foundation, which creates experiences for children with life-threatening illnesses, through “Timmy’s Playrooms” in children’s hospitals and provides surgeries for children in the Philippines, through the Tebow CURE Hospital. Each year, he hosts Night to Shine, a worldwide prom for people with special needs.
“They say Superman wears Tim Tebow pajamas. That wouldn’t surprise me at all,” joked Lewis, who is also a graduate of the University of Florida. “There are very few people like him and I know he will make the 50th Anniversary All Sports Awards Banquet a very special night for our community.”
ABOUT ALL SPORTS
The All Sports Association consists of dues-paying volunteers who share a primary mission to contribute time to raise money for local youth-oriented, non-profit organizations. There is an emphasis on sports programs that include the Boys & Girls Club of the Emerald Coast, Special Olympics Florida-Okaloosa, Eleanor J. Johnson Youth Center, and the Okaloosa-Walton Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Each February, the Association honors the area’s top High School, Collegiate, Amateur, Professional, and Special Olympics athletes, along with individuals from the community who have demonstrated outstanding support of youth athletics.