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Friday, June 21, 2024

Skin–tight shirts fail to make men into campus tough guys

You've got to love fads. The concept is solid gold.

Somewhere along the line, someone tries something different, a few people decide it's cool and all of sudden the masses are flocking to the brand new bandwagon.

Forget Guy Harvey T-shirts, Rainbows and Vera Bradley quilted diaper bags - it's TapouT time.

Like it or not, mixed martial arts, better known as MMA, has begun its takeover of the standard UF male.

Don't get me wrong, though. This trend has its upside.

MMA works in weight classes, so any small fry can rock an Affliction shirt and claim he's a lightweight.

I think a properly cinched rear naked choke will make you think twice before you stereotype a 155-pound string bean who doubles as a professional arm breaker when surrounded by eight chain-link walls.

Unfortunately for the honest few MMA freight trains roaming campus, this fad makes it damn near impossible to differentiate the practitioners from the pretenders.

I'm a fan of the Ultimate Fighting Championship and MMA in general, but I'm not about to steal Georges St. Pierre's wardrobe and walk around Gainesville with my hardest I'm-gonna-whoop-yo-ass face.

Maybe I missed the mass memo explaining Affliction's rationale, but the world is not shaped like an octagon, and neither is the UF campus.

Tough guy muscles can be left unflexed as you sit through lecture.

Whenever I see a bro in his TapouT gear at the gym, I can't help but wonder if he's looping his would-be entrance music in his iPod (which, naturally, is slipped into one of those arm-hugging elastic bands).

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If this fad continues to grow and everybody decides they want professors to address them solely by their inside-the-octagon nicknames, I'll have to hang up my MMA fanhood in a seldom-accessed closet in the back of my mind.

I guess it's possible I'm oversimplifying the fad.

Maybe this trend is no different than wearing your favorite football team's jersey.

Maybe these are secretly the most comfortable shirts ever created, even though most of them are tighter than Under Armour.

If that's the case, I deserve an arm bar for overstepping my pencil-neck boundaries.

Adam Wynn is a journalism senior.

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