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When and why did you start training for fighting? As a Marine, I liked combative preparation. The closest thing one can do to killing each other in a hand-to-hand situation or to test oneself in a self defense situation is Mixed Martial Arts. I started Martial Arts for fun and was participating in a grappling competition called “The Battle at the Beach” in Corpus Christi Texas (coincidentally, the same place as this upcoming fight) and found out that they had an MMA division, so I entered all the divisions including the MMA. I trained hard for the grapping tournament, so I was prepared. I enjoyed it and started doing more.
What ranks and titles have you held? I am a Relson Gracie Black Belt Instructor who holds 3 other Black Belts with stripes. Renegades lightweight tournament champion. WFC lightweight champion, GFC lightweight champion, and have won numerous grappling tournament titles.
Do you have any heroes? I don’t really believe in heroes. I believe in myself and what I have been taught. However I do admire & appreciate many people that have influenced or helped my life & training. My Instructor, Relson Gracie & the person who introduced me to Martial Arts, Chad Glission.
What is your favorite technique? The one that works best in the situation at hand. It is important to have the right tools & techniques to win. I am well known for choking people. I think it is a fool-proof way to end a fight.
What does it mean for you to fight in the WEC? It means I will get to fight in one of my favorite events. It also means my events won’t get canceled and my opponents will show up to fight, making all my training worthwhile. I will fight on regular television and will be included with some of the very best fighters.
Did you go to college and if so what degree did you earn? I have some college credits from classes in the USMC.
What was your job before you started fighting? I was in the USMC, I bounced for a while, I worked at a Limo company as a driver and a manager. I also worked in Engineering labs doing quality control for construction site owners.
Most memorable professional fight? Rafael Dias - GFC – Columbus, Ohio Nationwide Arena. I won a unanimous decision off my back in a wrestling state because of exceptional technical & vicious guard work. At no point did the Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt Champion pass my guard or touch my face. When we were getting back from the clubs he was getting back from the Hospital.
What was your most challenging professional fight? I would have to say the most challenging fight was against Randall Ebarb. He is a friend. We fought and I was fighting up a weight class and fought one fight the same night. The ropes didn’t work in my favor and I had to tap to a kimura and had to teach class the next morning.
Did you compete in any other sport at college or professional level? I surf, spearfish and just about any other ocean sport. I also hunt. If you can track down kill, carry, gut, & skin wild animals, it makes you pretty tough.
Who were your training partners for this fight? My training partners are my students and some Gracie students in California.
Did you put more emphasis towards a fighting style or adjust your training to prepare for your opponent? I am training specifically to box more and wrestle more efficiently.
What, other than WINNING, are you using for motivation for the fight? I want to make sure the WEC knows my potential. I am a full time fighter, and this is what I have chosen to do to make a living. I am always going to be in shape, and I can be a big asset for the 155lb division. I submit people, that’s what I do, and I want to show that the Gracie style, Relson Gracie and Helio Gracie's style is effective for self defense and still in MMA. The time for talking is done, now it’s time to prepare to fight.
How long do you see yourself staying in this sport? I see myself involved in this sport for about another eight years as a competitor and involved longer as a coach.