Happy Tuesday everyone, here's my Top 5 for December 1, 2009 from Len Berman at www.ThatsSports.com.
1. Quick Hits
Tiger Woods continues to stonewall the police, the media, and for goodness sakes his own golf tournament.
Notre Dame fires their beleaguered football coach Charlie Weis.
Legendary Florida State football coach, 80-year old Bobby Bowden, is expected to announce his retirement today.
The New Orleans Saints are now 11-0 after beating the Patriots last night 38-17.
34-year old disgraced sprinter Marion Jones, who spent 6 months in prison, is planning a comeback in basketball - the WNBA.
Pass the hat. The salary increases for Major League Baseball players are slowing down. The average salary, I said the average salary, is just under $3 million.
By the way, a full Yankees share for winning the World Series is worth $365,052.73.
2. Tiger, Get your Head out of the Woods
So here's the deal. If Tiger Woods really had a minor car accident he would be playing in his own golf tournament this week and talking to the media today. And this would all be over. In essence, his silence is deafening. If "his people" are advising him on how to handle this situation, he needs new "people."
3. Sportsman of the Year
I normally don't pay a whole of attention to the Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year. After all, isn't the whole idea to sell magazines? I've felt that way since 1969 when Tom Seaver won the award and Rod Laver didn't. All the "Rocket" did was win a second Grand Slam that year, all four major tennis tournaments. Nobody had ever done that. Having said all that, I'm thrilled Derek Jeter won this year's award. He is the real deal (unlike a certain golfer in the news.) All these years in the New York media spotlight and not a single blip. Not one. Congratulations Derek, well deserved. You truly are a sportsman.
4. Slap on the Wrist
The headline blares. Serena Williams hit with a record fine! Sounds good. But upon further review, yes she was fined a record $82,500 for her outburst at the U.S. Open. And yes it will be doubled and she could be barred from the next U.S. Open if she has "another major issue" at a Grand Slam tournament in the next two years. It all sounds good, but I have a coupla questions. Didn't the U.S. Open end over two months ago? What took these "tough guy" tennis officials so long to act? And if they really wanted to make a statement, why wasn't she suspended? Ya think a fine is going to affect her pocketbook? And I can't wait to see what rises to the level of "another major issue." Trust me, it'll never happen. The inmates run the asylum.
5. Dollars and Non-Sense
Leave it to the Wall Street Journal to do the math. With Notre Dame buying out Charlie Weis' football coaching contract, the school will reportedly have spent $36 million on Weis. According to the WSJ, Notre Dame could have taken that money instead and given out 936 full tuition scholarships, or built two new dormitories. Instead they bought 35 football wins. So here's my math. Each Charlie Weis win cost Notre Dame roughly $1.03 million. Sweet.
Happy Birthday: The Merry Mex, golfing good guy Lee Trevino. 70.
Bonus Birthday: Sports Illustrated swimsuit model, former wife of the Rangers Ron Greschner and currently with former NHL star Alexei Yashin (she does seem to like sports). Carol Alt. 49.
Today in Sports: Look what he's wrought! Dr. James Naismith invents a game called basketball. 1891.
Bonus Event: You go girl! Rosa Parks refuses to give up her seat to a white man on a Montgomery Alabama bus. 1955.
Thanks for all your kind wishes for my kids book The Greatest Moments in Sports making the New York Times Best Seller List. Good news, it's back in stock at www.Amazon.com and www.BarnesandNoble.com.
And thanks to all of you who pointed out that Tiger Woods and Buick split company awhile back. (I guess Tiger and any kind of car really don't mix.)