Disproving the maxim that sitting around endlessly watching sports on television is the exclusive province of unrepentant males, Jessica Mosley, a 27-year-old education coordinator from Arlington, Va., has won a couch-potato contest at Baltimore's ESPN Zone for the second consecutive year.
Although she did not come close to improving on her record last year, Mosley sat in a recliner and kept her eyes glued to a 13-screen display of matchups for 32 hours, 59 minutes and 14 seconds - with the exception of hourly stretch breaks and trips to the bathroom once every eight hours.
Last year, Mosley lasted for more than twice that time - 70 hours and 45 seconds.
At the start of this year's bout, which began Friday at 11 a.m., she confidently predicted she would go for 100 hours. Instead, she only hung in just long enough to outdistance Chris Dachille, a 30-year-old sports producer at WBAL-TV, after he threw in the towel Saturday evening. Still, she said after winning that she intends to defend her crown next year.
Mosley's prize is worth more than $4,000, an ESPN representative said. It includes a recliner, a $1,000 gift certificate to Best Buy, one year of free cable or satellite TV service, $1,000 in gift certificates and game cards to ESPN Zone and the Ultimate Couch Potato Champion's trophy - a real spud mounted on a stand.
Alex Pyzik, 24, who was last year's runner-up with 70 hours in the hot seat, called it quits this time after 24 hours and 15 minutes. He is due to start a new job on Monday and said he did not want to show up without having slept most of the weekend.
The first contestant to drop out was Chad Jones, 35, who said he was so distracted by his wife, Laila's, imminent delivery of their third child that he left the contest after 19 hours and five minutes.
In addition, "Chad was looking the most fatigued out of the four competitors," according to Kat Kirsch, an ESPN spokeswoman.