The dirty truth is, nudity sells. We all know that through Sports Illustrated's popular swimsuit issues; and even in the past where Ancient Greeks participated in the Olympics in the nude.

Well, now ESPN wants to join the fun! ESPN The Magazine will be publishing a "Body Issue" in which the athletes are naked!

The issue will be like this one ESPN published for the Winter X Games in 2004.

The issue which will be on stands in October, would be "tastefully done", according to Editor in Chief Gary Belsky. This means we don't actually get to see full-fledged nudity, but naked athletes with "strategically placed equipment" covering them up.

Yes, ESPN has a respectable 2.1 million circulation, but Sports Illustrated - popular for the naked women - has an impressive 3.2 million issue circulation. Which goes to show that sports magazines seem to have to "take it off" in order to sell more issues or gain more attention.

But of course, they say it's "all going to be about the sports. And sports is about bodies," Belsky says. He says the Body issue isn't set up to compete against the Swimsuit Issue: "We'll be completely relevant to sports fans. They're relevant to swimsuit fans. And body-painting fans."

Athletes: More Interesting When Naked [Jezebel]