Wednesday, the UAA announced the approval of three statues honoring Florida's Heisman winners; Steve Spurrier, Danny Wuerffel and Tim Tebow. Each statue would cost $550,000 and be funded with private donations that have been pledged. The statues would be on the west side of the stadium and be 15 percent larger than life-sized.
I am already on record as to being against Heisman statues. I am not against statues, but honoring three individual achievements over three National Championships, two basketball championships and the inventor of Gatorade does not seem right to me. If UF had historical markers honoring each player, that would be fine. But individual statues raises Spurrier, Wuerffel and Tebow to the level of deities. (Not to mention that Spurrier is a division rival and Tebow has not accomplished anything yet in his post-college career.) Maybe those three are Gods in some minds, but they would not have been successful without Ray Graves, the Fun n' Gun and Dan Mullen or Percy Harvin. The idea that one player can be elevated in the ultimate team sport is strange to me. Also, do we want to start acting like these assholes? (By the way, the statues are being made by the same person who did the Bowden statue. Get excited.)
The other problem I have is that all non-revenue sports took a 10 percent budget cut this year. While it was in line with a university mandate to cut costs, three statues are not going to help support baseball or soccer teams. Statues won't renovate the O'Connell Center, buy new equipment or finally build UF an indoor practice complex.
I hate to bite the hand that feeds, but it seems like the statues are another way to get a Bull Gator donor's name on something. I can only guess that Stumpy Harris is pissed Gale Lemerand got North-South Drive and three Heisman statues are his revenge.
That said, I am a huge homer and I'll be taking pictures with the statues at next spring's Orange and Blue Game. I just wish the donations would have been spent on something more useful.