Chuck Shriner, a 17-year-old football player at Bishop Verot's Catholic School, in Fort Myers, Florida, had his diploma withheld and was ordered to clean the school gym as punishment for Tebowing on stage during his graduation ceremony.
Later, Shriner discovered the punishment was his mother's idea, the Naples News reported on Tuesday.
Shriner said: "I just thought it was fun. I was just doing it to make graduation memorable."
Shriner's tebowing drew laughter from the audience, but not the school's administration, who told him he would not be getting his diploma at the ceremony.
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Shriner said: "They said what I did would give underclassmen inspiration to do something else, that it might lead to something else. So they were trying to set an example."
He wrote on his Facebook page: "Moment in my life I'll never forget, getting my diploma taken away for doing the Tebow on stage in front of [Principal John] Cavell. So worth it."
But after cleaning the gym Monday, his mother, a math teacher at the school, told him she was the one who pushed for the punishment because she wanted to "teach him a lesson."
Shriner's mother picked up the diploma on his behalf.