I just want to thank you guys for all the info in here.
I had no idea how to use newsgroups and after spending a few hours in here reading, I was up and running with NewsDemon and Grabit. I clicked through to make sure you guys got the referral on the NewsDemon signup.
For any newbies, Grabit is awesome since it unpacks and repairs your downloads.
I didn't love NewsRover that NewsDemon gave me with the subscription because I had to add the unpacking (using winrar) and repairing (using quickpar) on it's own. Grabit has those functions built in. Great tool.
Thanks again. I've been downloading like a madman from here and Merlin's Portal since figuring this all out.