Best of the Rest: Athletes That May Have Had a Future in MMA
MMA is likely the most demanding sport both physically and mentally that an athlete can choose to participate in. Many athletes in other sports are not cut out to be in the rough business of MMA, however there are a select few that may deserve the top billing of possible MMA fighter. Some athletes have actually changed sports some successfully like Brock Lesnar or Bob Sapp, others...not so much (Johnnie Morton). Here's a list of possible MMA fighters.
- Tom Zbikowski, football
Zbikowski was a safety for the Notre Dame fighting Irish and a standout as a leader and competitor. Captaining the squad his senior year showed mental toughness, playing for the most famous college in America with millions of eyes on him every Saturday. This is no task for the weak! Not only that but he was a very successful boxer winning his pro debut in Madison Square Garden of all venues. Not to mention it only took him 49 seconds to beat down his opponent. He had the potential to be a fighter much like Marcus Davis.
MMA Grade: C+
- Stephen Neal, football
Stephen Neal is a huge presence on the best offensive line in football on the best team in football, the New England Patriots. His 300 may need some trimming but if Lesnar could do it, so could he. Speaking of Lesnar, Neal went up against Lesnar for the national title in division 1 wrestling and was victorious. Neal was one of the best heavyweight wrestlers of all time boasting a 150-10 record at Cal State-Bakersfield. He also won the Dan Hodge award in 1999, the most prestigious award given to a collegiate wrestler. Then in 2000 he won the freestyle wrestling U.S. championship and just missed making the Olympic team.
MMA Grade: B+
- Jerry Collins, Rugby
Yes, this now retired All Blacks Flanker may have many of you scratching your heads, but this all time great was one of the more feared men on the pitch at all times. Though he never participated in an MMA match, he has two KO's to his name knocking out his opposite number on two separate occasions. Imagine if he was going for a KO!
MMA Grade: C-
There may have been a large number that I have left out so feel free to comment on who you believe desrves to be on the list and who deserves a lower or higher grade. However, it cannot be contested that there would be high interest in these gentlemen if they were ever to step into the cage.
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