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JERRY CROWE

Tiger Woods has found a way to accomplish the unthinkable: become even more famous

Text messages from press row . . .

December 04, 2009|Jerry Crowe

Tiger Woods has accomplished the heretofore virtually unthinkable: He has made himself even more famous. . . .

Who knew a fender bender could inflict such damage? . . .

Ron Artest's contention that he drank cognac during games brings to mind the late Dock Ellis, who famously claimed to have pitched a no-hitter while tripping on LSD. . . .

Kobe Bryant, ranked No. 1, heads a group of five Lakers on a Sporting News list of the 50 greatest players in the NBA today, as selected by a panel of Hall of Famers and other experts. . . .

Other Lakers on the list: Pau Gasol at No. 17, Artest at No. 29, Lamar Odom at No. 43 and Andrew Bynum at No. 50. . . .

Baron Davis, at No. 32, is the only Clipper represented. . . .

Left unsaid after Mike Dunleavy notched NBA coaching victory No. 600 this week was that his next loss will be his 700th. . . .

Even without that controversial last-minute touchdown Saturday, Damian Williams and USC would have beaten the spread against UCLA, a rarity for the Trojans this season. . . .

Eight times in 11 games they've failed to cover. . . .

USC, by the way, is one of two teams among the top 25 in this week's Bowl Championship Series standings that has defeated as many as three other top 25 teams. . . .

The other is Oregon. . . .

Oregon's one and only Rose Bowl victory came in 1917, 21 years before Nike co-founder and Ducks billionaire benefactor Phil Knight was born. . . .

Lou Holtz may have made the worst prediction of the year when he said Notre Dame would win the BCS championship. . . .

After his masterful performance Monday night, Drew Brees looks like the NFL's most valuable player in waiting, but Peyton Manning and Brett Favre will have their supporters. . . .

Since turning 40 on Oct. 10, Favre has passed for 16 touchdowns, with only two interceptions. . . .

Four former USC quarterbacks -- Carson Palmer, Matt Leinart, Mark Sanchez and Matt Cassel -- started NFL games Sunday, but Pete Carroll probably would tell you that Matt Barkley is better than all of them. . . .

The 11-0 starts by the New Orleans Saints and Indianapolis Colts might remind longtime Southland fans of the 1969 Los Angeles Rams, who won their first 11 games behind Roman Gabriel, Deacon Jones, et al, and then lost four in a row, among them a first-round playoff game against the Minnesota Vikings. . . .

Bill Belichick's "Salvation Army Thrift Store" wardrobe, reader Steve Kennedy of Carson City, Nev., e-mails to say, "looks a lot better when he's winning." . . .

With this week's defection of Drew Gordon, things have gone from bad to worse for the UCLA basketball team. . . .

The Bruins could use somebody like Deon Thompson of Torrance, who is North Carolina's leading scorer and one of four Southern Californians on the Tar Heels roster. . . .

Regarding the phrase "after further review," exasperated reader Bill Weissich of San Rafael, Calif., e-mails to ask, "They reviewed it before?" . . .

At least a dozen NBA scouts are poised to descend Tuesday on Malibu, where 6-foot-7 sophomore forward Paul George of Fresno State is expected to draw the most interest but Pepperdine guard Keion Bell might open a few eyes too. . . .

The Grey Cup, which goes to the champion of the Canadian Football League and was first awarded 100 years ago today, was won in 1995 by a U.S. team, the Baltimore Stallions. . . .

The CFL's most outstanding player that year was Mike Pringle, a Stallions running back from Cal State Fullerton. . . .

You'll not find a warmer, sweeter person than the late Mike Penner, who apparently was as tortured as he was talented but always seemed to have a kind word for everyone he met. . . .

Recommended reading: Heartfelt tributes to Penner by Scott French at realclearsports.com and Kevin Bronson at buzzbands.LA. . . .

Noting that Sarah Palin in her book attributes a quote to John Wooden that should been assigned to Native American John Wooden Legs, reader Bill Littlejohn of South Lake Tahoe, Calif., e-mails to suggest, "I can't wait to get to the part where she talks about George Washington Carver crossing the Delaware." . . .

Based on what we've seen and heard this week regarding the world's best golfer, Tiger doesn't date cougars.

jerome.crowe@latimes.com

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