Player Life

College Roommates Tebow And Hernandez Took Different Paths


Former Gator QB Tim Tebow acted like a big brother to now-convicted murderer Aaron Hernandez, when the two were roommates at the University of Florida.

Tebow developed a bond with Hernandez when he hosted the TE during Hernandez’ official visit to Gainesville.

But the trouble started for Hernandez early at Florida and Tebow found himself in the middle of it.

The Orlando Sentinel reported about an incident involving Hernandez in 2007, when he was a freshman.

Tebow tried to stop Hernandez from getting into a violent fight.  A bouncer had confronted Hernandez over a bar tab.

It was reported that a waitress at The Swamp Restaurant allegedly brought Hernandez two “alcoholic drinks,” which he consumed but refused to pay for.

Hernandez told police [bouncer Michael] Taphorn got in his face and began yelling at him. As Taphorn turned to walk away, Hernandez punched him in the side of the head.

Taphorn declined medical treatment but the next day doctors discovered his right ear drum had burst and the injury would take four to six weeks to heal.

When the officer could not find Hernandez immediately following the incident, he interviewed Tebow and Shaun Young.

“Tebow stated that he witnessed the dispute,” the officer wrote. “… Tebow stated that he went over to try to help resolve the conflict.”

Tebow went on to say he urged Hernandez to leave peacefully and tried to make arrangements to pay the bill.

Two hours later, another officer found Hernandez and spoke with him about the incident. Tebow was present during the interview.

Years later, after Hernandez was arrested on murder charges, Tebow was asked about his former roommate and only responded that the situation was ‘sad.’

In a letter from prison, Hernandez wrote:

“I know there is a reason I’m going thru this and I will figure it out through my relationship with the Lord. I fell off especially after making all that money but when it’s all said and done “GOD” put me in the situation for a reason!”

Hernandez may have waited too late to heed Tebow’s influence.

If not for his soul, at least for his life as a superstar athlete.


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