The world may be a step closer to solving the mystery that is the identity of the chubby naked man straddling a dead shark.

A sports anchor in Florida told local media that the man is known as James McSwigin.

"This guy lives in upstate New York, that photo was taken two years ago off the shores of Long Island - not in Florida," David Pingalore of WKMG-TV in Orlando told Mike Bianchi on Friday on Bianchi's Open Mike radio show.

"I have the man that's fully clothed that's naked on the shark, on the boat. Yes, normal photographs," Pingalore said.

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Earlier this week, many believed the man bore a resemblance to Jim McElwain, coach of the University of Florida Gators.

Head coach Jim McElwain of the Florida Gators. Photo / Getty Images
Head coach Jim McElwain of the Florida Gators. Photo / Getty Images

"I was on the phone with Steve McClain [Florida's senior associate athletics director for football]," Pingalore said. "The naked man wanted to meet Coach McElwain, then all of a sudden - an hour later - he flipped and got scared" and the meeting was called off.

"The man that is naked on the shark is afraid for his life because he believes bounty hunters - I'm not making this up - and people with shark people, whatever those people would be called ... he's afraid because the New York Post put up an article about 'who is this naked man' on the naked shark," he said.


Pingalore said the photo was meant to be tongue-in-cheek.

"I guess in the UK there's some websites that naked women get on sharks, so they were trying to mock what women were doing with sharks," he said.