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Father knows best?

Jackson State guard Chuck Nwagwu’s grades were good enough for the NCAA. But not for his father.

Emeka Nwagwu forced his son to quit the basketball team after pulling Cs in two classes fall semester.

“A few of my professors told him I had slacked off,” Chuck Nwagwu said. “He thought it was because of basketball. It didn’t matter what I said because his decision was final.”

A walk-on in 1995, Nwagwu had earned a starting position. He had maintained a 3.2 GPA until fall.

“I discussed it with his mother, sisters and brothers and they all agreed that he should quit,” said the elder Nwagwu, a JSTU professor who also made Chuck move out of his dorm and canceled his meal tickets.

“I had to impress upon him that school comes first,” Nwagwu said. “He thinks he’s going to be the next Michael Jordan. But Jackson State did not recruit him to play basketball.”

Little did the school know it hired dad to play coach.

He vants to be alone

Teaming up with Kevin Costner was no field of dreams for Tiger Woods.

“It wasn’t Kevin personally, it was the whole scenario,” Tiger’s coach, Claude “Butch” Harmon, said of the pairing for the AT&T; Pebble Beach Pro-Am. “It’s difficult anytime you play with a movie star.”

Woods and Costner were besieged by crowds, and Harmon said Woods found it hard to focus as cameras clicked and flashed at Costner - who only learned to play the game for his recent movie “Tin Cup.”

“I think maybe Tiger will play with his dad or one of his friends next year and get away from the celebrity thing,” Harmon said.

Uh-huh.

During the tournament, Woods slipped into the Salon at the Lodge under the cover of darkness to get his hair cut. Within minutes, dozens of people were pressing their noses against the window to watch. One woman wanted to buy a lock of his hair.

See, Tiger, when Nike pays you a gazillion dollars for dawn-to-dusk TV commercials, you’re a celebrity.

Nick Van Excess

Lakers guard Nick Van Exel believes his team - with nearly a half a season to play - has wrapped up the Pacific Division.

“I just know it,” Van Exel said. “If I’m wrong? I doubt it. If I’m wrong, I’ll buy everybody on Seattle what they want - less than $100.”

So nothing from Nordstrom, then.

He sues and scooooooores!

Istanbul soccer club Besiktas is suing a referee. The club claims Metin Tokat “abused his position as a civil servant” by not granting it an “undisputed” penalty shot during a 0-0 tie against Vanspor.

If they kick, you must acquit.

At least he waited until the guy was cut

When Joe Courtney’s 10-day contract with the Sixers expired, PRISM/SportsChannel analyst Steve Mix asked equipment manager Allen Lumpkin for the jersey. “My daughter’s name is Courtney,” Mix explained.

Remember, honey, what happened to the last guy who wore this.

The last word …

“I thought the All-Star game was for the best players, not the guys who kiss everybody’s butt.”

- Hornets forward Anthony Mason, who didn’t make it

, DataTimes ILLUSTRATION: Photo

Wordcount: 541
Tags: column, golf

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