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For weeks, Florida coach Urban Meyer said he didn't know enough about the other candidates to make an informed decision about whether Tim Tebow deserves to win the Heisman Trophy.
By ANTONYA ENGLISH
Published December 4, 2007
GAINESVILLE - For weeks, Florida coach Urban Meyer said he didn't know enough about the other candidates to make an informed decision about whether Tim Tebow deserves to win the Heisman Trophy.
But after spending the weekend watching the other contenders, Meyer got his answer.
"I think Tim should win it," he said Monday evening. "I actually talked to those guys ESPN a lot over the weekend, and I don't like to speak unless I have an opportunity to evaluate everything. I got to see guys play. And I never really looked at our statistics, but the money statistics are unbelievable this year: third downs, scoring drives - 55 percent of the time we score points. I've never heard of that before. And 56 percent (efficiency) on third downs and in (passing) efficiency, we're No. 1 in America. And then the numbers, just the touchdowns. I have to believe he deserves to win that Heisman."
Tebow was pleased by the endorsement.
"It means a lot," he said. "He's a very wise coach and a wise man, so he knows a lot of football."
The three finalists for the Heisman award will be announced at 6 p.m. Wednesday on ESPN. The winner will be announced Saturday night.
NFL BOUND?: Tight end Cornelius Ingram and defensive end Derrick Harvey have petitioned the NFL about their draft status.
The two have submitted their paperwork to the NFL draft advisory committee to determine their potential draft status should they decide to leave school early. The committee is made up of NFL officials, including scouts and general managers.
"I think it's good." Meyer said. "I think the NFL actually does a pretty good job with it. We'll meet with them afterwards, and I'll actually put them on the phone with some general managers and head coaches and let them answer some questions. So if they make a decision, it's a well-educated one."
Ingram had an ankle injury this season but played in all 12 games, with 33 receptions for 491 yards and seven touchdowns. Harvey had 41 tackles in 12 games, 27 solo, and 6 1/2 sacks and five pass breakups.
JONES STIRS CONTROVERSY: Promoting his quarterback Colt Brennan for the Heisman, Hawaii coach June Jones called Tebow "a system quarterback" whose success is largely attributed to the spread offense.
"I walked into the room and got an earful from Shelley (his wife) about it," Meyer said. "I kind of heard bits and pieces of it."
Tebow seemed a little miffed. Asked how he would fare in Hawaii's run and shoot, he said: "I ran it a little bit in high school, and the numbers weren't too bad there. I guess it depends on your system."
Tebow said of Brennan: "I think he's a good quarterback and runs a good system."
MOVING ON: Junior quarterback Bryan Waggener has decided to transfer, and freshman running back Bo Williams is scheduled to meet with Meyer today before making his decision about leaving. Waggener, a transfer from Citrus College in Glendora, Calif., enrolled in classes in January and was battling for the backup position when he fractured his foot in the first practice and missed the remainder of the spring. Meyer said Waggener will try to go where he can play right away and UF is trying to help him.
Williams, an early enrollee in January, missed spring practice with a knee injury and redshirted. He would be fifth on this spring's depth chart.
[Last modified December 3, 2007, 23:32:53]