Jim McElwain has been vindicated. The naked guy mounting a shark is not him.
The photo started making the rounds online last weekend and it didn’t take long for college football fans to note that the guy looks just like Florida’s football coach. McElwain steadfastly denied any involvement in the shark-humping, first through a school spokesperson and later in a very, very serious meeting with reporters.
Now we finally have what appears to be proof of McElwain’s innocence.
David Pingalore, the sports anchor for Orlando’s WKMG, appeared Friday morning on Orlando Sentinel writer Mike Bianchi’s radio show and dropped the bomb.
A viewer, who happened to be watching Pingalore’s newscast while on vacation in the area, sent Pingalore an email with non-nude photos of the man in question, who he said was his friend from upstate New York, a former NYPD officer named Sean who took the photo off the coast of Long Island a few years ago.
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“I have the actual pictures of the actual naked man and I’m waiting on permission to use the pictures,” Pingalore said. “I have [photos of] the man that’s fully clothed, that’s naked on the shark, that’s on the boat. Yes, normal photographs.”
Pingalore also said he was in the process of setting up a meeting between the naked man and McElwain but the naked guy backed out.
“The naked man wanted to meet Coach McElwain, then all of a sudden, like an hour later, he flipped and got scared,” Pingalore explained.
The reason for his apprehension was that Sean believes his life may be in danger due to all the negative attention the photo attracted. Now I understand why McElwain was determined to prove it wasn’t him.