Tim Tebow: Chemistry on this year's Gator team the best it has ever been
There have been times during Florida quarterback Tim Tebow's tenure with the Gators that a week like this might have been cause for concern.
The Gators hosting Tennessee is a big game in itself. Add the surrounding fan and media hype over the off-season comments from UT coach Lane Kiffin aimed at UF coach Urban Meyer, the Gators' No. 1 ranking and the title of defending national champion, and in the past that might have been too much for the team to handle.
Not this year, Tebow said. And it's all due to one thing: a nearly indescribable chemistry among the Gator players.
"I honestly think this year, for the first two games it’s been the best chemistry and the closest group of guys that we’ve had since I’ve been here,'' Tebow said. "And I don’ really think it’s close (between other teams). I think the offseason program, what we went through, just the camaraderie. Football is a very violent game and in practice there are a lot of arguments and a lot of scuffles and things like that. But with this team, it’s very minimal. It’s guys pushing each other to be the best and when you see that it’s like man this team is a lot different than most teams, because of that. Because guys are just pushing each other. There’s not a lot of animosity: offense, defense special teams. There’s just not a lot of extra stuff going on. Honestly, it’s working hard, trying to get better, improving and trying to be the best team possible. Yes, it sounds cliché, but it’s true.''
Meyer said he relies on team leaders like Tebow, Brandon Spikes, Joe Haden and Mike and Maurkice Pouncey, and his strength and conditioning coach Mickey Marotti to help him keep a pulse on the team. And all have echoed Tebow's sentiments.
"I listen to guys like Tim,'' Meyer said, "I listen to our strength coach. it’s (chemistry) pretty strong. The core of our team is strong. You’re always going to have some peripheral issues you’re dealing with, but when you can have a grown-man conversation with a lot of guys on your team, that’s pretty good. And we can do that right now.''