Watson presents Masters badge to Tebow

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Bubba Watson did more than keep his commitment to Tim Tebow to play in the 2nd annual Tim Tebow Foundation Celebrity Golf Classic six days after winning the Masters.

Masters champion Bubba Watson (center) presents Tim Tebow (left) with Watson's Masters badge at an event for the Tim Tebow Foundation Celebrity Golf Classic on Friday night. The badge is No. 15, which is Tebow's number.
  Bob Mack/Morris News Service
Bob Mack/Morris News Service
Masters champion Bubba Watson (center) presents Tim Tebow (left) with Watson's Masters badge at an event for the Tim Tebow Foundation Celebrity Golf Classic on Friday night. The badge is No. 15, which is Tebow's number.

Watson brought the former Florida and Nease phenom a gift before Friday night’s gala at the TPC Sawgrass Clubhouse. It was a gift that brought out great emotion in both men.

Watson gave Tebow his player badge from last Sunday’s round, in which Watson won his first major. Every player is given a badge at the Masters before his round. Watson was randomly given No. 15, the same number Tebow made famous with the Gators and Denver Broncos. The same number he’ll try to make more memories with as a member of the New York Jets.

“I knew I’d see Tim in a week,” Watson said. “I told my caddie, I’m going to keep it unopened, and I’m going to hand it to him. I just felt like I should give it to him. It’s his football number, and I thought he might want it more now that I won.

“We believe in the Bible and doing good for people. That’s our connection. We both play sports, and there are other connections, too, but our first connection is being Christians.”

Tebow and Watson shared an embrace and clearly have a strong friendship.

“It was very special,” Tebow said. “He didn’t have to do anything like that. He’s just an amazing guy. He’s been so supportive of me and my foundation. He really cares about giving back and making a difference. He has a huge platform, and I think it will continue to increase, because he’s so real. He’s so genuine.”

Tebow and Watson, two of the most popular athletes in sports today, will take on the TPC Sawgrass Players Stadium Course today for numerous good causes.

“We’re very passionate, very emotional people,” Tebow said. “It will be fun. He’s already been talking a lot of trash to me, so we’ll see what happens tomorrow.”

Watson has enjoyed an incredible week, conquering Augusta National by beating Louis Oosthuizen in a sudden-death playoff. The 33-year-old Watson was featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated this week. Tebow was featured on the magazine’s cover in December.

“I’m honored to be here,” Watson said. “I’m honored that he asked me to play in it. It’s for a great cause. It has a great champion with great character in Tim Tebow, so why would I not be here?”

Joining Tebow and Watson will be a rarity in Florida — an Olympic gold-medal skier. Lindsey Vonn will be part of the festivities. Vonn became the first American woman to win the women’s downhill at the 2010 Olympic Games in Vancouver.

Not surprisingly, there is also a huge Gators contingent. Former Jaguars and UF star running back Fred Taylor will compete.

Tebow’s childhood hero, Danny Wuerffel, will also be on hand. Wuerffel won the 1996 Heisman Trophy and led the Gators to their first national championship by beating Florida State 52-20 in the Sugar Bowl.

A couple of Tebow’s teammates at UF, offensive linemen Maurkice and Mike Pouncey, are also in the mix. Maurkice is a Pro Bowl center with the Pittsburgh Steelers, and Mike is entering his second season with the Miami Dolphins.

Florida football coach Will Muschamp will also play.

There’s even something for FSU fans, as former defensive back Deion Sanders, quarterback Christian Ponder and running back Leon Washington are scheduled to be among the participants. Washington, a former Jackson High star, plays for the Seattle Seahawks.

Buffalo Bills linebacker Shawne Merriman and Garry Sheffield, a nine-time All-Star in Major League Baseball, are also taking part.

Tebow has also secured commitments from stars outside sports. Singer Jordin Sparks, country band Rascal Flatts and Limp Bizkit frontman Fred Durst, a Jacksonville native, will participate.

Play will begin at 9 a.m. with a shotgun start. Tickets are $25 for adults and $15 for fans 18 and younger. Parking is $5.

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csraguy 04/14/12 - 07:51 pm
Boy what a turnaround in our

Boy what a turnaround in our athletes lately. Both of these guys are class acts, positive role models, excellent athletes and great representatives of Christ. We are all here for a reason and we should do all we can to give back, help others, etc. whenever we have an opportunity, no matter our views on religion.

These are two excellent young men and I wish the well in all of their endeavors.

HighSociety 04/14/12 - 09:39 pm
Csraguy, I agree completely.

Csraguy, I agree completely. Both of these individuals are great role models!

scoopdedoop64 04/15/12 - 12:55 am
Well, that's 3 in a row! Yes,

Well, that's 3 in a row! Yes, these 2 guys are good role models. But life does bring hard times and should either of these 2 guys fail us in someway we should be there to encourage them to get up and try again. It's hard to live up to people's expectations so I pray that they can just stay strong in the Lord and be a blessing to others.

albertoli 04/15/12 - 02:58 am
so great to see good role

so great to see good role models in sports instead of lawbreaking thugs

Disciple21 04/15/12 - 12:18 pm
Everyone who break the law is

Everyone who break the law is not a thug. I guess you a law breaking thug also because as point in your life you have done something that wasn't legal. Just because people make a bad decision doesn't mean they a thug or bad people. Sweep around your own front porch before you sweep around someone else.

Little Lamb
Little Lamb 04/15/12 - 02:23 pm
Disciple 21 said, “Everyone

Disciple 21 said, “Everyone who breaks the law is not a thug.”

That's so true. Congress, the states, and the municipalities have written so many laws that is impossible not to break some.

allhans 04/15/12 - 06:22 pm
What a great story..Salutes

What a great story..Salutes to Watson and Tebow....

albertoli , I agree. At least if a person deliberately breaks the law, then he is a thug.

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