Pebble Beach Pro-Am
Kevin Costner (above, in Tin Cup) will be paired with Tiger Woods (cup runneth over), while Jack Lemmon attempts to halt his Lucciesque streak of 23 years without making the cut. Other celebrity hackers include Bill Murray and James Woods, who probably wishes the pairings were done according to surname (John Daly-Tyne Daly, anybody?). Last year's tournament was rained out after 36 holes, making it the first PGA Tour event to go unfinished since 1949.
CBS, 3 PM
Bulls at Sonics
During Chicago's record-setting (87-13) stampede to the NBA title, only one team branded the Bulls with more L's than their jersey manufacturer: Seattle, led by Shawn Kemp (right), slew Chicago thrice at Key Arena, once during the season and twice in the playoffs. The Sonics fell 4-2 in the Finals to Michael Jordan's wilting presence. The Bulls will be without Dennis Rodman, who is serving an 11-game suspension for kicking a cameraman.
NBC, 3:30 PM
National Hot Rod Association Winternationals
If you thought you knew some fast girls in high school, wait until you see Cristen Powell, a senior at Portland's Jesuit High who has turned 275 mph in her Top Fuel dragster. Powell, who goes from zero to 100 faster than any female since Thelma and Louise, will make her pro debut as the youngest Top Fuel driver ever in this NHRA season opener in Pomona, Calif. John Force, a six-time Funny Car champ who sings a bar or two of an Elvis Presley song while tearing up the quarter mile, will launch the defense of his 1996 title.
TNN, 7 PM
Tulane at Cincinnati
On Thursday, Jan. 16, the Green Wave's Jerald Honeycutt (below) enjoyed the best game of his career and the Bearcats' Danny Fortson endured his worst during a doubleheader in Cincinnati. Honeycutt, a 6' 9" senior, scored 38 points as upstart Tulane upended Xavier. In the second game, Fortson, a 6' 7" junior, was held to nine points as the Bearcats bowed to Temple. Another Thursday in Cincy finds these two teams in a game that should help decide whether Fortson or Honeycutt wins Conference USA's player of the year honor.
ESPN. 9:30 PM
Up Close Prime-Time: Bobby Knight
Host Roy Firestone goes grouse hunting with college basketball's Great Santini. How metaphorical is that? "I'd been an anti-Knight guy for a decade, but I've done a 180-degree turnaround," says Firestone, who was so impressed after spending three days with Knight that Up Close for the first time will devote its entire hour to a single personality. Firestone reveals the General layer by complicated layer. "It's no one's goddam business what kind of person I am," barks Knight. Maybe not, but Bobby, we can handle the truth.
ESPN, 7:30 PM
Lennox Lewis vs. Oliver McCall
McCall, fresh off a Dec. 15 TKO of a Christmas tree in the lobby of a Nashville hotel, meets Lewis (below) for the WBC heavyweight crown in Las Vegas. The bout is a rematch of McCall's shocking 1994 second-round upset, in which he knocked out the previously undefeated Lewis. McCall's Tennessee tinsel tussle, undertaken after he was drinking, was proof that the substance-abusing brawler wasn't ready to end the outpatient rehab he was—and still is—undergoing. That gives McCall an edge, says Lewis's manager, Frank Maloney: "The last time Oliver fought Lennox, his first four weeks' training was in rehab."
HBO, 10 PM