That Anderson Cooper, the newly muscular and somewhat openly closeted CNN anchor and "60 Minutes" contributor, would get topped by an Olympic athlete isn't much of a surprise. But that it was Michael Phelps and it unfolded on TV last night in a pool with both in bathing suits and shirtless, provided a nice perk to CBS' aging and often stodgy newsmagazine.
Cooper interviewed Phelps for a lengthy profile that aired Sunday, a nice sports-oriented package to draw in the NFL fans who just finished watching the late game. The piece provided the first indepth look at Phelps since Beijing and provided a few insights -- having to dig deep to win his seventh gold medal, how Milorad Cavic's mistake in the 100-meter butterfly allowed him to tie Mark Spitz, turning down a $5 million endorsement deal and buying a $1.5 million condo in hometown Baltimore.
Phelps returns to the pool and his fulltime training regime in January, but he did don a skimpy suit to meet a challenge by Cooper to race a length in the pool. Cooper also went shirtless but wore a more conservative suit before Phelps easily outpaced him without even using his arms. The two side-by-side, shirtless and muscular, added a nice bit of eye candy to an interesting profile of Phelps.
Cooper may not be an Olympic swimmer, but he looks pretty good shirtless, even with his hairless chest.
Watch the 13-minute video.
Matt Hennie blogs on Atlanta's gay sports scene at Project Q Atlanta.