If you can't be People's Sexiest Man Alive, here's a decent consolation prize. This week TIME Magazine included Tiger Woods in its 2009 list of the top 100 most influential people in the world. Woods is included in the category of "Heroes and Icons," where he joins an eclectic collection of notables including Captain Sully, Michelle Obama, Sarah Palin and George Clooney. The only other athletes on the list are tennis player Rafael Nadal and Filipino boxer Manny Pacquino.
"You rarely see an athlete who single-handedly changes an entire sport," Woods's friend, fellow Right Guard pitchman and Nike brother Roger Federer writes in TIME. "When Tiger couldn't play last year because of an injury, golf ratings
suffered. He has changed the way golfers train and prepare themselves
and has brought huge numbers of new fans to the sport, including me. I
never followed golf when I was younger. Now I do."Full disclosure: GOLF.com is a small outpost of the vast Time Inc. publishing empire. However, my invitation to the World's Most Influential People dinner must have gotten lost in the mail.(Photo: Fred Vuich/SI)