Tebowing has taken America and NFL fans by storm, a fad highly popularized in the Internet and social media. Tebow has become known for his visible display of Christian faith, striking the pose coined as Tebowing on one knee.
The jokesters at SNL had a laugh poking fun at Tebowing, with a skit in December with Tebow played by Taran Killam and a cameo from Jesus played by Jason Sudekis. The word has even been officially recognized by a dictionary, the Global Language Monitor, defining the term as taking a knee in prayerful reflection in the midst of an athletic activity.
But on Friday, Yahoo Sports! Host Blair Johnson shed some light that Tebow was not the first athlete to drop to one knee in prayer during a sports event, in a term now trademarked by him.
But what if there was a guy who Tebowed before Tebow? Johnson asked.
It turns out that Orel Hershiser first struck the pose during 1988 National League Championship Series when the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the New York Mets, making it to the World Series. According to Yahoo Sports, Tebow was just a one-year-old child when Hershiser Tebowed before Tebowing existed in the form we now know it as.
Johnson pointed out that Hershiser, like Tebow, was known for being a devout Christian during his time playing ball and is arguably attributed as the sole reason the Dodgers went to the World Series in 1988. Similarly, Hershiser led the team to 23 wins that year and was chosen as MVP for the series.
Nowadays Orel Hershiser is a professional poker player for PokerStars and an analyst for ESPN's Sunday Night Baseball.
Hershiser has not yet publically commented on the issue.
Tim Tebow has grown into a sports and pop culture phenomenon, for his stats as quarterback in addition to Tebowing first seen in October 2011.
The rapid rise of use of the word has seldom been equaled, Paul Payack, author for the Global Language Monitor, said. The first mention of the word can be traced to the dramatic overtime victory of the Denver Broncos football team over the Miami Dolphins on October 23, 2011. During the victory celebration, Tim Tebow 'took a knee' and was photographed in a moment of prayerful reflection.