MMA News

Wednesday, 10/12/2011, 10:50 am

Not Just Another Wrestler: Bubba Jenkins Says He “Will Not Lay-and –Pray”

For the last few months I have been covering the progress and adaption of future MMA fighter and 2011 NCAA National Wrestling Champion, Bubba Jenkins, for As I’ve continued with updates and announcements on Jenkins’ progress I’ve noticed that a lot of fans are pessimistic about the National Champ’s conversion into the sport of MMA. Many have voiced their displeasure with another wrestler using their overly-dominant and superior grappling skills to “lay-and-pray” their way to a successful record. Well, with Jenkins now set to fight on December 2nd and “Tachi Palace Fights 11” he has a message for all those fans that are not excited about his upcoming debut:

“I will not be the lay-and-pray type of wrestler,” Jenkins explained on Sherdog Radio Network’s “Savage Dog Show.” “That is just a promise to everyone who is out there.”

There is no doubt in my mind that Jenkins will use and subconsciously rely on his wrestling skills during his debut fight against Chris Huerta on December 2nd, but I also believe that he has the athletic ability and tenacity to be a true fighter rather than just another wrestler thrown into an MMA fight. His potential to become a great striker and an all around successful fighter is apparent every time I see him compete.

Jenkins is coming off of a 2011 NCAA national wrestling title at 157 pounds while he attended Arizona State University last spring and has since been training with American Top Team to prepare to launch his MMA career into the stars. With so much still in question about his career as a fighter Jenkins wants the fans to know that he doesn’t even really know what to expect from himself, but he does promise to bring the fire to the cage and entertain the fans as much as he possibly can. And for good reasons I thoroughly believe him.

“Nobody knows what I’m going to do because I don’t even know what I’m going to do,” Jenkins said. “I can plan all day for my wrestling matches, and in the wrestling matches I don’t even do what I plan. To get out there in front of everybody in MMA and actually have some leeway to use my athleticism and not have as many rules as there are in wrestling, I’m just going to be opening up. You’re not going to see too many straight-on shots and takedowns. You’re going to see a lot of fists, elbows, knees, shins, ankles — whatever I can throw out there to damage a guy, I’m throwing it.”

This is comforting news considering that most fans are unappreciative of upper echelon wrestling skills. It seems that Jenkins will head into his fight with Huerta with an extremely open arsenal of weapons. There is really nothing more dangerous than a fighter with a great wrestling background and lethal striking skills. Jenkins wants to show that’s exactly what he is. He really wants to show that fans that he is more than just a world class wrestler. His training at American Top Team is helping him open up his game and unleash his full potential as a fighter. Jenkins also briefly commented on the striking aspects of his training.

“I’m learning how to take some punches, learning how to take some kicks and definitely learning how to give them,” he said. “It’s going very well, as smooth as it could go for a wrestler who’s got a low height when I spar and stuff like that. They’re teaching me how to come up out of my stance and get more into the MMA side of things. The transition is smooth. A lot of the stuff is similar, real, real similar.”

Jenkins will open his career as a fighter at 155 pounds but explained that he would eventually like to drop down to the 145 pound weight class.

“When I get some serious fights and go up against big names, I think I’m going to go down to 145,”
Jenkins said. “I think I’m a natural 145-pound fighter. With the weigh-ins the way they are and my weight not being that much right now, 145 sounds real good to me. But for the beginning part of my career, just to get some experience under my belt, I don’t think I’m going to cut too much and just fight at the weight I’m at, which is around 155.”

Jenkins is excited to kick-start his career in the right direction but is well aware of the hype that is surrounding him well before his first fight. Luckily the added attention is everything he wants and thrives off of. Jenkins is setting the bar high for himself and plans on reaching stardom extremely soon.

“My goal is to be a household name like Phil Davis, Rashad Evans, ‘Bones’ Jones,” he said. “I want to be doing Crest commercials and commercials that have nothing to do with the sport. I want to live up to the hype.”

With the attention he has already garnered without a single fight under his belt I can only imagine what a few exciting victories will do for his future. I’m excited to see how things work out for Mr. Jenkins and I’m curious to see if he really intends on straying away from the “lay-and-pray” that has cost so many great wrestlers their fan base and following. Best of luck, Bubba. We look forward to your debut on December 2nd and eventually seeing you smile wide when you really do star in those Crest commercials!


7 Responses to “Not Just Another Wrestler: Bubba Jenkins Says He “Will Not Lay-and –Pray””

  1. Nick says:

    Lol BUBBA. Awesome name

    • GET RID OF FITCH says:

      You know damn straight Bubba is referring to Jon Fitch and probably Mendes. I am so tired of people on these sights saying how great of a wrestler Jon fitch is because its simply a misleading statement. Jon Fitch is good at LAY N PRAY ans that is it. Bubba is a D-1 National champ something Fitch didn’t come anywhere even remotely close to ever being. there is a big difference between what agreat wrestler has done and what Fitch has done is entire career which is use his 30 lb weight advantage over most fighters. In a REAL fight or a REAL wrestling match Fitch would get his ass kicked. Fitch wouldn’t stand a chance fighting anyone even close to his natural weight and if they implemented same day weigh ins Fitch would retire. I can’t wait to see Bubba get in there and back up his words because you can just tell he;s nothing like a Jon Fitch who would never EVER attempt to fight someone toe to toe. Mark my words Ellenberger, Condit, Rory will expose Fitch very soon. However we all know Fitch always seems to weasel his way out of bad matchups and we will have to see him fight hardy or Alves for the 10th time. Fitch keeps preaching how he has cleaned out the WW divsion and one of these times Joe Silva is going to say wait a minute Jon while you have been sidelined for the last 2 years there are completely new top 10 fighters that are begging for a piece of you and I think its about time you actually fought someone who is not taylor made for your LAY N PRAY. time to fix his wagon Joe Silva

  2. e says:

    thats what they all say

  3. Taylor says:

    SOOOO many wrestlers say that…..and then what do they do? take someone down and hump them for 3 rounds. I believe it when i see it.

    • GET RID OF FITCH says:

      Most wrestlers use their wrestling to get their opponents on theirs backs so they can GNP. Lay N Pray was invented by Jon Fitch and mastered to where now because of Fitch awesome wrestlers-fighters are automatically labeled LAY N PRAY which in most cases is a bad wrap. Fitch uses the rules to fake pitter patter punches NEVER leaving a mark on any figfhters faces and just enough to keep from getting stood up. Most of my favorite fighters are wrestlers but they don’t lay n pray. they constantly trying to improve their positions to set up either GNP or submisions. I think its a discrace that Fitch braggs non-stop about that HOKEY jits belt he got out of a ceral box. What kind of jits black belt NEVER and I MEAN NEVER trys for submisions. How can a guy like Fitch LAY N PRAY every single fight and NEVER EVER even pretend to try submiosns. Its obvious his so call black belt is total bullshit or he wouldn’t be afraid to try and advance p;osition at least oncve a fight to try and finish. No he uses his 205 lbs to hold down smaller opponents and run out the clock. IMO Fitch is a total DISCRACE to all the REALFIGHTERS in the UFC who go out there and give it theri all entertaining us fans and trying to win in exciting fashion. something needs to be done about the rules that were WRITTEN by a gold medal wrestler Jeff Blatnick that were intended to give wrestlers and advantage. In collegiate wrestling Fitch would lose points for his constant stalling tactics. Soon as the refs decide to enforce the rules of stalling and the atletic commsions impliment same day weigh ins the playing fields will be leveled and fights will no longer be won before they are even started by the EXTREME WEIGHT CUTTERS like Fitch. Everyone knows Fitch started his career at 205 anbeing a wrrestler all his life you sure the hell know he was cutting weight then to. it all comes down to is all the Fitch;s are too damn afraid to fight anyon etheir own size. Noone fits that statement more than Kenny Florian . How can a guy be treated like some kind of hero becauzse he has to drop 4 weight classes in order to compete. Kenny didn’t have an ounce of fat on him on season one of TUF at 185 and his head seemed only a little too big for his body then. Now Kennys, head looke like its 10 sizes to big for his anorexic body. I would bet the farm we will see Kenny fighting for the 135 title within 6 months. my next prediction is based off a Dana white statement made right before the BJ Penn fight to Dave Meltzers that the UFC wanst to get rid of Jon Fitch. please look it up for yourself, SB nation-Dana white/Jon Fitch/Meltzer and read it for yourself. Dana says Fitch is over paid and has ZERO fan support ans he is stinking up UFC fight cards and next time he loses he will be released. i will celebrate for a month non-stop trouble is AKA makes sure he either gets opponenst he out weighs by 30 pounds or perfect matchups like Alves. All you have to do is compare the fights that Condit, Rory, ellenberger have had an dwon in last few years to fitch’s fights and its a total myth that Fitch is still ranked #2. Based on beating lets see Ben Saunders, Alves right out of surgery (no takedown defense) was 10 seconds from being KO”d by Mike Pierce after he lay n prayed for 2 rounds then got his ass kicked in round 3. Pierce has been begging UFC for rematch. no until fitch fights the real UFC WW top contenders he is nowhere close to being ranked #2

  4. edd says:

    haha that what they all say… just wait til he gets hit in the face.

  5. Random Person says:

    I am sure he means every bit of it honest. If he gets hit or gets into trouble his instinct will be to lay on his opponent. Wrestlers cannot help that.

    Which is why I am not excited to see another wrestler joining the MMA world; But when you think about it, there is nothing else for a wrestler to do other than olympics and Pro wrestling. All that is left is MMA. So we will be seeing this a lot. Cannot do anything about it.

    We can only hope for a bunch of prodigys to come out and be real fighters.

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