Larry Lacewell, who left Oklahoma last winter on bitter terms after several years as Sooner "secretary of defense" and assistant to coach Barry Switzer, picked the aftermath of OU's dip from No. 1 to grab a little little limelight: he's new head coach at Arkansas State.

Greater love hath no man than Bill Davidson, who in eight years at Jonesboro has guided Arkansas State through one of its finest eras: 50-32-1 and on the fringe of major football status. Davidson took in native Arkansan Lacewell as an unpaid volunteer assistant at the start of this season, since then has quartered Lacewell as his house guest - now steps aside, saying, "It became obvious after Larry had been here one month that he could do more for this program than I could."

No surprise the old Baltimore Bullet, Earl Monroe, is back with the Knicks, at a reported $260,000. Word with the Madison Square Garden club was as disappointed with its greenhorn guards as with Willis Reed and saw the light to shell out enought to coax the holdout (or heldout) Pearl, 33 - albeit still at reduced pay from his former $375,000 a year. The rule against handchecking was made for Monroe.

Sure, the guy in the cap in the collage of old Redkins accompanying Sunday's "changing of the guard" article was not Sonny Jurgensen but Ron McDole - that'll teach the Bear to pull the visor down over his eyes. Or the wool over ours.