Tim Tebow, Bobby Bowden team up at Celebrity Golf Classic

By Hays Carlyon
Morris News Service

Two Great Floridians, one a Florida Gators legend and the other a Florida State icon, teamed up to help raise money for children around the world on Saturday.

Former Seminoles football coach Bobby Bowden joined former UF and Nease quarterback Tim Tebow in the third-annual Tim Tebow Foundation Celebrity Golf Classic at the TPC Sawgrass Players Stadium Course.

Bowden coached FSU to national championships in 1993 and 1999. He holds the NCAA Division I record for career wins with 377.

Tebow helped lead the Gators to national championships in 2006 and 2008 and won the Heisman Trophy in 2007. He was selected by the Denver Broncos in the first-round (25th overall) of the 2010 NFL Draft and is a current member of the New York Jets.

The weekend started with Tebow receiving the Great Floridian designation from Governor Rick Scott on Friday. Prior to Friday, there had been 66 people named a Great Floridian since the program was started in 1981. Bowden received the accolade last year.

The 83-year-old Bowden had been invited to participate in Tebow’s golf event for the last two years, but had scheduling conflicts.

“It’s a great organization for a great cause and I wanted to support it anyway I could,” Bowden said. “I couldn’t make it the last couple years, but I wanted to make it when I could and I was able to make it over here today.”

Bowden proved he still has some game around the links. He drained a 15-foot birdie putt on the 15th hole. Bowden said Saturday was only the second time he had ever played the course, home to The Players Championship.

For Tebow, having Bowden participate in his event was significant.

“He has a crazy schedule,” Tebow said. “But, he believed in what we’re doing, believed in the causes and believed in me. That made it very special for him to come out.”

Bowden was among many celebrities who participated in the golf classic. Florida football coach Will Muschamp played, as did former Gators Fred Taylor, Mike Pouncey and David Nelson. Taylor was a standout with the Jaguars, while Pouncey and Nelson currently play for the Miami Dolphins and Cleveland Browns, respectively.

Jacksonville native Leon Washington played. The former FSU and Jackson star is a current member of the New England Patriots.

Tebow’s former teammate with the Denver Broncos, sack specialist Von Miller, competed, as did former NFL and Miami Hurricanes quarterback Vinny Testaverde.

“It was great to be able to play golf with friends and family,” Tebow said. “People become friends and family through this. Obviously, it’s a lot of fun and it’s fun to play a game we don’t play too much.”

There were plenty of non-football celebrities as well. Naismith Hall of Famer Artis Gilmore, a former Jacksonville University phenom, teed it up. PGA Tour golfers Chris DiMarco and Billy Horschel were on hand.

The entertainment world was represented by “Duck Dynasty” reality show stars Willie Robertson and Jep Robertson, as well as actor Alfonso Ribeiro of “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” fame, NFL Network broadcaster Scott Hanson and country singer Jason Michael Carroll.

Players were encouraged to bring children from the crowd onto the course to take a shot.

“The best part is pulling a kid out of the crowd and having him hit the putt,” Tebow said. “For a lot of us, that’s the best part of the day.”

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One Response to “Tim Tebow, Bobby Bowden team up at Celebrity Golf Classic”

  1. andrea says:

    Good Stuff.

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