This message brought to you by

Debra Flax

On Feb. 7, Super Bowl XLIV will kick off and fans cheering on the team of their choice everywhere will gather around their televisions with friends and family. They’ll purchase their favorite chips and dip, knock back their best-loved brewskies, and pray to the NFL gods for a touchdown.

Now I don’t know about you guys, but I’m personally psyched about the Super Bowl commercials that seem to top each other year after year. We all remember the one-second masterpiece Miller High Life broke out during the last game.

This February, however, football and commercial fans will not only chuckle at ridiculous chain store skits and competitively amusing cell phone advertisements. They will also have the opportunity to wonder: Is the Super Bowl really a place for religious platforms? This question sponsored by Florida football and Christian golden boy Tim Tebow.

Tebow and a faith group, Focus on the Family, will present an ad using Tebow’s own life story to show how abortion is wrong. Pam Tebow was told to terminate her fifth pregnancy due to an illness she contracted during a mission trip. She, of course, rejected the advice given and carried to term a healthy baby Tebow.

Not only is such an ad poorly timed during a football game, it seems very self-important to me.

“Don’t abort your baby, ma’am, because he may become me in the future.”

Seriously?

I’m not saying that Tebow’s belief is right or wrong, but is the Super Bowl, of all times, the right forum for such a controversial religious issue? There will already be grown men fighting and arguing over which team is better, such a debate doesn’t need to be added to the mix as well.

As Alabama fans, we inherently dislike Tebow for simply being Florida’s quarterback, but overall there are very few, if any, negative comments about the boy. This could quite possibly be an issue that irks us even more.

He’s already more popular than half of the starting quarterbacks in the NFL. He’s a well-liked media darling and a community service sweetheart. He has a 48-7 career record, a Heisman trophy and considerable coverage on ESPN and CBS. He’s also just a simple good ol’ boy Christian whose smile melts hearts, or so they say.

Yeah, it may be endearing to some now while he’s still known for playing college ball.

And yes, the masses may not mind this one spot during the Super Bowl much.

But how long do you think hardcore NFL fans will handle a paid professional who uses the game they love and love to watch as a tool to spread his evangelical ideals?

Starting off his pro career like this, Tebow is getting ready to shoot himself in the foot.

He’ll become infamously annoying before he even sets foot on the field and won’t be respected for pushing such an agenda through national sports.

I may be wrong, though. He might wind up being adored, leaving his mark on the history books like Cassius Clay becoming Muhammad Ali.

I doubt he will, but it could happen.

As pessimistic as it sounds, the good will towards men will at some point stretch too far. At some point, Brad and Angelina adopt one too many children. Sean Penn goes on one too many political rants. At some point it all just becomes ridiculous.

Debra Flax is a sophomore majoring in journalism. Her column runs on Thursdays.