LIBERACE lived such a life of excess – even his celebrity crushes were over the top!

The late performer’s former lover, Scott Thorson, told The ENQUIRER that Liberace lusted after screen icon Cary Grant and football superstars Joe Namath and O.J. Simpson!

“Liberace was constantly on the prowl, eyeballing any guy who crossed his path – gay or straight,”said Thorson, who wrote “Behind the Candelabra,” which was the basis for the recent HBO movie starring Michael Douglas as Liberace and Matt Damon as Thorson. And theentertainer was apparently smitten by Grant.

“Cary came to one of Liberace’s shows in Las Vegas,” Thorson recalled. “Liberace pointed him out to me in the audience and said, ‘Look at Cary over there with all of those women. What a waste of a good man!’”

But Liberace, who contracted AIDS and died in 1987, also liked athletes.

“Whenever he saw a picture of Joe Namath he became giggly like a schoolgirl,” said Thorson. “Liberace once said to me, ‘I’m not a fan of football, but I like how he wears that uniform. Sure wish he played for the other team.’”

BUT HIS MOST surprising crush was O.J. Simpson, whom Liberace and Thorson met in the early ’80s

at NBC studios. Thorson says Liberace called the running back “dreamy.”

“Liberace never made any moves on any of them, though,” added Thorson. “He was in the closet and didn’t want the public to know he was a homosexual – even though it was the worst kept secret in Hollywood.”