There's something to be said for being ranked in the 30s: no one's asking Jacory Harris to pose oiled up and shirtless riding a flamingo or prancing down the beach or anything -- though, naturally, the Afro Butterfly would make that look as cool as possible.
Not so for Tim Tebow, who's currently suffering the pangs of ranked and titled success in a GQ spread that borders on a beach trash romance novel. It's one thing to sport oiled-up nipples on page and Internet, it's another to be described like this:
Tebow is six feet three and 245 pounds, all thick polygons and smooth flat planes and inescapable corn-fed handsomeness. He's wearing a billowy white shirt and loose-fitting jeans that somehow only underscore the solidity of his bulk, like a tarpaulin draped over a concrete pylon. You can see why coaches have always wanted to deploy his body as a battering ram...
He looks smaller in person than on TV or on a stage. Something to do with the geometry of his body, the relentless blockiness; distance turns Tebow into a cartoon. Close-up he's rounder, reassuringly 3-D, wearing a sea blue T-shirt and long ivory shorts. He grabs a hard-boiled egg from a bowl at the dining commons. With exquisite casualness, he tosses it back and forth from hand to hand without cracking the shell...
Tim Tebow moves; glides? drifts?-back to his seat, his plate heaped with three sausage patties, a syrup-drenched waffle, and five hard-boiled eggs. "Can I get you anything to drink?" he asks, and pours me a glass of orange juice...
His chin is stubbly. He smells strongly of deodorant, and his thick-lashed eyes are impressively serene, considering that a mere forty-five minutes ago, back in the Florida weight room, Tebow was grunting next to a painted slogan that read PAIN IS WEAKNESS LEAVING THE BODY, doing calf raises with a 300-pound offensive lineman sitting on his shoulders. (In the weight room, Tebow wore a blue spandex shirt with an orange flame crawling up the sleeve; everyone else was in gray.)
Wow. Perhaps you'd like a moment to yourself, GQ's Jason Fagone.
But really, is anyone surprised? Everything normal quarterbacks do, Tebow does bigger. Play with injury? Tebow will play a meaningless spring game with a fever and a case of the pukes. Be an asset to college football? Tebow will improve your life in either five or twenty minute increments. Go topless? Bring the man some oil and a spray bottle! Pick up an egg? He'll do it exquisitely.
Thank goodness he's only got one season left. If the drooling above is any indication, there's only so much excellence some of us can handle.