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Charles Mann’s Hands

Posted by Matt Terl on February 28, 2011 – 11:32 am

I shook Charles Mann’s hand when he was in the building on Thursday, talking to students about preparation and planning. It was an unexpectedly painful experience.

The pain was unexpected not because Mann doesn’t look strong (he does), but because there’s been so much talk over the years about Dexter Manley’s handshake and no one ever mentions Mann’s. “It’s a standoff,” Mann says, when I ask him how his grip matched up to his old defensive linemate’s. “He tries to hurt people. I’m just really firm, because for years these things” — he holds out his huge hands and twisted fingers — “hurt so bad, and now they don’t hurt anymore. So this is like payback.”

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