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JERRY CROWE

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's revelation brings to mind another Laker's shocking announcement

Text messages from press row . . .

November 12, 2009|JERRY CROWE

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's revelation that he has been diagnosed with leukemia brought to mind the shocking 1991 announcement by Magic Johnson that he was HIV positive. . . .

Jim Murray, noting that "HIV may have picked on the wrong guy," wrote that Johnson had a chance to enlighten the world. . . .

Speculated the columnist, "Magic may be winning something far more important than a Final Four, an NBA championship, a player of the year. Magic may be winning for a whole generation. Let's pray he can slam-dunk this one." . . .

Let's hope Abdul-Jabbar can too. . . .

Stanford shocked the college football world as a 41-point underdog two years ago, but it wouldn't be all that surprising to see Toby Gerhart and the Cardinal upset USC again Saturday. . . .

With the end of the regular season less than a month away, Matt Barkley and the Trojans are still finding their way. . . .

UCLA's Rahim Moore is tied for tops in the nation with eight interceptions -- two more than USC's team total. . . .

The real face of the Dodgers was in Beverly Hills on Tuesday, Vin Scully addressing the Hollywood Radio & Television Society and saying of Frank and Jamie McCourt's impending divorce, "As someone who holds a great sanctity for marriage, it only breaks my heart. . . . I have nothing else to say about it." . . .

That's the high road. . . .

Suggested filmmaker Ron Shelton, who introduced Scully and moderated a brief question-and-answer session with the longtime Dodgers voice, "150 million people know Vin Scully and yet they've never met him. That's the genius of Vin Scully." . . .

Between Matt Kemp and Torii Hunter, Southern California has cornered the market on Gold Glove center fielders. . . .

Hunter, a nine-time winner in his career, is the Angels' fifth two-time Gold Glove outfielder, following in the footsteps of Darin Erstad, Jim Edmonds, Devon White and Gary Pettis. . . .

While no Angels outfielder has won more than two Gold Gloves, pitcher Mark Langston won five, catcher Bob Boone four and second baseman Bobby Knoop three. . . .

Wes Parker won six for the Dodgers, Steve Garvey four. . . .

A Sporting News poll of 99 NFL players anointed Drew Brees of the New Orleans Saints as the league's first-half offensive most valuable player, teammate Darren Sharper as first-half defensive MVP and the Saints as Super Bowl favorites. . . .

The rookie pick, far ahead of runner-up Mark Sanchez, was Percy Harvin of the Minnesota Vikings. . . .

Revealed as the league's "dirtiest" player was offensive guard Richie Incognito of the St. Louis Rams, who apparently has been unsuccessful in staying true to his name. . . .

In regard to the photographs of an eerily ashen-faced Sammy Sosa circulating in cyberspace, reader Bill Littlejohn of South Lake Tahoe, Calif., e-mails to suggest, "It's obvious he's still comfortable around the bleachers." . . .

Sosa blames skin cream and bright television lights. . . .

After all those forgettable seasons and all those lopsided losses, do Clippers fans calling for Mike Dunleavy's head really believe that Donald T. Sterling actually values their opinion? . . .

Before Isiah Thomas made his debut as Florida International's new coach Monday at North Carolina, students serenaded him with chants of "Ma-gic, Ma-gic, Ma-gic." . . .

In his newly published autobiography, "Open," Andre Agassi writes of former rival Pete Sampras, "I envy Pete's dullness. I wish I could emulate his spectacular lack of inspiration, and his peculiar lack of need for inspiration." . . .

That's a compliment? . . .

John Scolinos, the widely respected former Cal Poly Pomona and Pepperdine baseball coach who died Saturday, played a part in determining that the Coliseum could be a viable home for the Dodgers while Dodger Stadium was being built. . . .

Wally Moon should be grateful. . . .

Considering England's love of the game, it's surprising to learn that Nick Faldo -- that's Sir Nick Faldo, as of Tuesday -- is only the second pro golfer to be knighted by the queen. . . .

The first was Henry Cotton. . . .

Soliciting donations for the U.S. speedskating team, which his "The Colbert Report" TV show is sponsoring, comedian Stephen Colbert says, "If we all pitch in, we can take this formerly obscure sport and raise it to the level of Ontario junior league hockey."

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jerome.crowe@latimes.com

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