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ESPN 'Nude' Issue Rumors Surface With Danica

Danica Patrick

Late last night, the popular blog SportsByBrooks published this headline:

"Danica To Bare It All For ESPN Mag's 'Nude' Issue"

The headline and the storygot our attention because it was the first name that had surfaced after the announcement of The Body Issue was made in June. We put forth our top 10 men and women at the time who we thought might decide to take it all off, even though ESPN The Magazine editors were clear that this was not a condition of appearing in the publication.

First, we called Team Danica. Lewis Kay of BNC public relations, which helps represent Patrick, came back with this note. "Danica is NOT confirmed to appear in the issue, nor has she even been approached," Kay wrote.

ESPN The Magazine's editor-in-chief Gary Belsky did not say as much on Patrick, but explained to us that, at some point, the magazine's officials would say who was in the issue before it hits the newsstands in October.

"We are not announcing which athletes are participating in The Body Issue at this time," Belsky, wrote in an e-mail. "When we do reveal the participant list, we will not reveal who disrobed and who did not. The photos will answer most such questions, of course; and we will otherwise let the individual athletes reveal, should they so choose, whether they removed all clothing for our shoots."

"Some are fully disrobing, some are not. That's why we're calling it The Body Issue, not The Nude Issue. In every case, the photos are appropriate and tasteful. The Body Issue is a celebration and exploration of the athletic form in all its glory and extremes, situated within the boundaries of taste and the frontiers of artistic excellence upon which ESPN The Magazine and ESPN have built their reputations."

Questions? Comments? SportsBiz@cnbc.com

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