Nothing in sports is real any more.

I have become numb to the fact that nothing in sports is authentic any more.

Eleven years ago, a juiced up Mark McGwire blasted 70 home runs for the Cardinals, breaking Roger Maris’ all time single-season record by about 14%. Three years later, Barry Bonds obliterated that mark by hitting 73.

As it turns out, those two records were achieved with the help of performance enhancers, and we now know are fake.

2001 also brought us Super Bowl XXXVI. Patriots-20 Rams-17. Years later, we found out that New England coach Bill Belichik had illegally video taped opponents defensive signals. The Patriots victory has been deemed fradulent (at least by me) because of the cheating…a warranted label for Belicheat.

In baseball, Alex Rodriguez, Rafael Palmeiro and Roger Clemens all joined the parade of fakers. Chad Knaus, the crew chief for Jimmie Johnson, was suspended in 2006 for allowing a device that provided the #48 car with an aerodynamic advantage at the Daytona 500.

Shawne Merriman of the San Diego Chargers tested positive for steroids. Fake. Vashon’s basketball team recruited players. Fake. Referee Tim Donaghy fixed NBA games. Fake.

Now perhaps the unkindest cut of all. Danica Patrick shows up in the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue, but as it turns out, she and SI admit that her American Flag tattoo had been airbrushed out. Sports Illustrated told CNBC that the tattoo, on the small of her back, was taken out, but a spokesman didn’t comment as to why it made that editorial decision. Patrick’s tattoo was in the issue last year.

As for Team Danica, it seems like they’re fine.

“Danica is aware of the edits and is comfortable with the final photos,” BNC’s Lewis Kay told CNBC.

I’m OK with it too, but I have to wonder, why? What’s the point? Can we believe nothing in sports any more?