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Nike signs Tim Tebow

Tim Tebow won’t have an NFL contract for a few more months, but he has a major endorsement deal.

Adam Schefter of ESPN is reporting that Tebow, the Heisman Trophy-winning Florida quarterback, has signed a shoe and apparel deal with Nike that will pay him just under $300,000 a year at minimum, with incentives that could earn him significantly more than that.

Whether you think Tebow will be a star or a flop in the NFL, there’s not much doubt that this is a smart business move for Nike. Tebow has an extraordinarily large fan base -- maybe the largest fan base that any college football player has ever had at the time he’s entering the NFL. Even if Tebow’s NFL career consists mostly of standing on a sideline holding a clipboard, there will be plenty of fans who will want to purchase any shoes and apparel that Tebow endorses.

After all, if hundreds of people will line up to spend $160 on Tebow’s autograph, it stands to reason that quite a few will be willing to spend quite a bit on Tebow’s shoes as well.