Weekly Fight Notebook
By Mike Chiappetta
NBCSports.comPosted: Jul.27, 2007, 12:16 pm EDT
As the world of mixed martial arts continues to grow, it is a predictable development that the caliber of athletes attracted to the sport continues to rise.
One interesting concept is "Team Takedown," a management company that is actively recruiting amateur wrestlers with top resumes.
Recently, two of their clients, Jake Rosholt and Eric Bradley, won their debut MMA matches.
Rosholt, for example, was a three-time NCAA champion and four-time all-American while at Oklahoma State University, while Bradley is a two-time All-American. Rosholt recently relocated to Las Vegas to train at Randy Couture's Xtreme Couture gym. Ironically, Couture is also an OSU alum.
Rosholt had only been training three months when he won his first fight just last week.
"It was awesome, a blast," Rosholt told OSU's Daily O'Collegian after winning the Masters of the Cage light-heavyweight title. "I just have to go on and train harder and get better. I love it."
Another wrestling champ hoping to eventually find his way into professional MMA, and more specifically, the UFC, is Ben Askren, a two-time National Champion from the University of Missouri. Askren finished his career with an 87-match win streak and a 153-8 record, and perhaps most impressively, won the Dan Hodge Trophy (wrestling's equivalent of the Heisman) twice.
Askren told me this week that he is mainly training for the Olympics right now but is also training MMA on the side, most recently working out with UFC veteran Din Thomas.
Look for a more in-depth profile on him next week.
Kyle Maynard wants to fight MMA
You may or may not remember Kyle Maynard, but his story will surely jog your memory. Maynard is a 21-year-old Georgia native who first came to national prominence in 2004, when he competed in his state's high school wrestling championships despite being born with no elbows or knees.
His book "No Excuses: The True Story of a Congenital Amputee who Became a Champion in Wrestling and in Life," went on to become a best-seller.
Now, the man who seems to have no limitations in life has decided he wants to fight in mixed martial arts.
Maynard recently met with the Georgia Athletic and Entertainment Commission, the state governing body that regulates MMA, and apparently he will go forward with his plan to fight, possibly at a September 14 event in Georgia.
Reaction to his impending debut has been predictably mixed.
Maynard recently posted a message on MMA.tv in which he took on critics of the move, writing, "I've expected for a while that for me to compete under official MMA rules there'd be controversy. Believe it or not, it's not the first time people have expressed doubt in what I know I'm capable of, and probably won't be the last."