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Monday, July 18, 2011
An excuse to watch Barkley's golf swing

By Mike Sando
ESPN.com

The NFC West's dominance extends beyond fighter jets, croc files, athlete award eligibility, currency collection and retractable playing surfaces.

A look through the celebrity golf leaderboard from Lake Tahoe, Nev., shows Ken Whisenhunt, Jerry Rice and Marshall Faulk finishing among the top 20. Whisenhunt, who grew up around the game in Augusta, Ga., site of the Masters, was tied for 13th with 49 points in Stableford scoring, just ahead of Rice (15th) and Faulk (20th).

These guys need to get NFC West alumnus Trent Green out on the course a little more often. Green, former quarterback for the St. Louis Rams and three other teams, finished 80th in the 83-man field, barely beating the notoriously swing-challenged Charles Barkley.

Indeed, golf is a humbling game. It's tough to envision Barkley beating anyone after watching him swing a club. The retired NBA great did cruise past musician Jay DeMarcus (minus-83) and Sacramento Kings rookie Jimmer Fredette (minus-88).

Tony Romo, Chris Chandler, Mark Rypien, Billy Joe Tolliver and John Elway finished among the top 15 with at least 47 points. Fellow quarterbacks Joe Theismann, Trent Dilfer, Vinny Testaverde, Matt Ryan, Aaron Rodgers, Jim McMahon and Steve Beuerlein put up respectable or semi-respectable scores.

All quarterbacks do not make for competitive golfers, however.

Green scored minus-65 points. Arizona Cardinals linebacker Joey Porter finished 78th at minus-61. Chiefs coach Todd Haley, the Cardinals' former offensive coordinator, tied with New England Patriots receiver Wes Welker for 64th at minus-9.

With any luck, it's about time to put away the clubs and tee up another kind of ball.