Madison 's Jo Jo Bynum on WAFF's American Ninja Warrior - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Madison man hopes to become American Ninja Warrior

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Jo Jo Bynum is on track to progress to Las Vegas nationals on NBC's physical endurance show. (Source: WAFF) Jo Jo Bynum is on track to progress to Las Vegas nationals on NBC's physical endurance show. (Source: WAFF)
American Ninja Warrior airs Monday nights on WAFF. (Source: NBC) American Ninja Warrior airs Monday nights on WAFF. (Source: NBC)

A Tennessee Valley man has his sights set on Mount Midoriyama – the iconic, and as yet unconquered – finale of NBC's American Ninja Warrior.

The show tests an individual's strength and endurance, as players complete a series of obstacle courses. Those courses combine cross-fit, strength, and luck.

Jo Jo Bynum of Madison is a computer software engineer by day… American Ninja Warrior by night. Bynum has been a fan of the series since he saw the Japanese incarnation on NBCUniversal-owned cable network G4.

"Recently, I just found out that it was here in America about two years ago," Bynum said. "I always sat there eating potato chips saying, ‘I can do that; In fact – where is my ice cream? – I know I can do that!'"

Jo Jo got his chance to shine this season, finding himself in the Dallas city regionals.

"One Sunday I got a phone call – ‘Jo Jo, we want you to come to a certain location at a certain time.' It's almost like when the good Lord calls, you don't question. You just say ‘I'll be there,'" he said.

The course features six obstacles – so unique, it's hard to train for them. In fact, the competitors have no idea which six they may face. In preparation for whatever the show may throw at him, Bynum turned his house into his own personal training course.

"I'm hanging onto my door seal; I built obstacles here at home; I'm doing push-ups," he said. "I borrowed a keg from a local brewery; I'm walking on top of that. Any little thing, you might think it's strange, but that's what you do training for American Ninja Warrior."

Bynum's quest to land in the Las Vegas nationals – and a chance to climb the crag at the finale – is still on track. He has made it through to the second round of competition.

"When they unveil that curtain and show you what you have to do next, you have to be ready for it so you don't dwell on it, you got to get a course of action and you got to know to do it when it comes time," Bynum said.

No matter the outcome going forward... this Madison warrior is already living a dream.

"Seeing American Ninja Warrior in person, actually standing in front of the steps, oh it was everything. It all sinks inr ight there, looking at the water, and hoping you never get wet. It was everything I dreamed of."

American Ninja Warrior airs Monday nights at 8, with encores Sundays at 6 p.m., right here on WAFF. Jo Jo's next appearance on the program is on the Monday, July 14 broadcast of the Dallas Regional finals.

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