Tim Tebow Most Popular Active American Athlete, ESPN Poll Says

January 12, 2012 Updated Jan 12, 2012 at 12:20 PM EDT

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Tim Tebow Most Popular Active American Athlete, ESPN Poll Says

January 12, 2012 Updated Jan 12, 2012 at 12:20 PM EDT

What can't Tim Tebow accomplish these days?

The Denver Broncos quarterback's latest achievement is topping an ESPN Sports Poll of favorite active professional athletes.

Tebow, who was named by 3.0 percent of Americans age 12 and older, becomes just the 11th athlete to top the ESPN list since it launched in 1994, joining Michael Jordan, Joe Montana, Troy Aikman, John Elway, Mark McGwire, Brett Favre, Tiger Woods, Peyton Manning, Kobe Bryant and LeBron James.

“To put this in perspective, Tim Tebow rose to the top before the end of his second season, Rich Luker, founder and director of the ESPN Sports Poll said in a news release.  “It took Tiger Woods three years, LeBron James eight years and Kobe Bryant 11 years.  I think we may be at the front end of a new era in sports stars.  Michael Jordan and Tiger Woods dominated the top of the list for 17 years.  Woods’ fall in 2009 seems to have opened the doors for Bryant, James and now Tebow.”