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Top 5 Sports Stories

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TGIF everyone here's my Top 5 for March 30, 2012 from Len Berman at www.ThatsSports.com.

1. Quick Hits
  • The Final Four is tomorrow in New Orleans. Louisville vs. Kentucky at 6:09 p.m. Eastern. Then Ohio State vs. Kansas at 8:49 p.m. Both games on CBS-TV.
  • Stanford beat Minnesota 75-51 to win the NIT.
  • Can't beat the Heat. Miami won its 15th straight home game, dumping the champion Dallas Mavericks 106-85.
  • The torch has been passed. The best-in-the-West Thunder dispatched the Lakers in L.A. last night, 102-93.
  • Tim Tebow tweeted, "I've already said it 44 times so here goes number 45: I'm really excited to be a Jet! Haha!" If you weren't scoring at home, he said the word "excited" 44 times in his Jets news conference.
2. Boys Club

So what's it going to be, will sex or money win out? As you know, women aren't allowed as members at the famed home of the Masters, Augusta National. In addition to the Green Jacket, they've got another tradition. They give their major sponsors, or at least their CEOs, memberships. Aha, there lies the rub. The new CEO of IBM, one of the Masters' big sponsors is Ginnie Rometty. Will they give her a Green Jacket? Or just like all other women will she get the boot? Ah, a tradition like no other.

3. Name Dropping

So I was talking to Charlie Sheen yesterday. God, I love starting a sentence like that. Actually we were chatting it up at the Today Show. He told me his sports memorabilia collection is down to just two items: Babe Ruth's 1927 Yankees championship ring (which he referred to as the Holy Grail of collecting) and the contract when the Red Sox sold Babe Ruth to the Yankees. If you're going to own two pieces of memorabilia those ain't too shabby. By the way Charlie once owned the baseball that Mookie Wilson dribbled between Bill Buckner's legs. The ball is now owned by songwriter Seth Swirsky.

4. Friday eMailbag

When I wondered if Mark Sanchez won't be worried about losing his job when the stadium starts chanting "Tee-Bow" during a poor performance, J.F. wrote on Facebook at "Len Berman's Top 5," -- Fifteen minutes after they pull him for Tebow the crowd will be chanting 'San-chez.' Or maybe 'Penning-ton.'"

With Magic Johnson fronting the group buying the Dodgers, A.M. writes, "Who would have thought that 20 years ago after he revealed he was HIV positive that he could put that behind him, remain healthy, and grow into an enormously successful businessman investing in minority neighborhoods and bringing companies like Starbucks into areas that would have been considered a risky investment."

And I was thrilled to get this from a young reader, D.L. "With the passing of (boxing writer and historian) Bert Sugar, there is very little left to remind us how great boxing can and should be."

5. Spanning the World

This week's Spanning the World highlight comes from a soccer game in Chile. While they were playing, a 7.1 earthquake struck. Some of the fans and media ducked for cover, but not the players. They're a hardy lot.
Spanning the World airs monthly on NBC's Today Show. Next up: Thursday, April 26 in the 8:30 a.m. half hour.

Happy Birthday: Former basketball star Jerry Lucas. 72.

Bonus Birthday: Guitarist Eric Clapton. 67.

Today in Sports: Baseball commissioner Bud Selig appoints George Mitchell to investigate the use of steroids in baseball. 2006.

Bonus Event: You can see it from here. The U.S. purchases Alaska from Russia for two cents an acre. 1867.

Fun Fact: The Top 5 was read yesterday in South Dakota, South America, South Africa and South Korea. But it still hasn't been opened in the four corners of Russia. My NBC friends assure me that'll change during the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.

To sign up for Len's free daily Top 5 email click here.