It’s said to be the fastest growing sport in the world. For one Mixed Martial Arts analyst and enthusiast he couldn’t have a better job.
Meet former US Army Sergeant Jeremy Hurtt who has a very appropriate name for his current profession. Hurtt says that MMA has made “phenomenal changes” since the days that he was brought to the sport. He got his start in 1994 when a friend brought over a VHS copy of a legendary fight: Royce Gracie vs Dan Severn. “I was a small guy in in high school.” Hurtt said when asked about what caught his eye, “That appealed to me, that idea of this skinny little guy going out and defeating 250 pound guys who look like they could punch through a brick wall.”
The sport has been around longer than most think. The term Mixed Martial Arts was coined in 1995 but the roots of the sport can be traced back as far as Ancient Greece and the earliest Olympics to a sport know as Pankration. Hurtt says that MMA is leaps and bounds ahead of where it was since illegal groin shots and “no holds barred” fighting ruled the cage.
Mixed Martial Arts and its flagship brand the Ultimate Fighting Championship have shed their “barbaric” image for a more technical representation. Shortly after the hiring of current CEO and President, Dana White, the sport underwent a massive overhaul. No longer are matches between two cavemen without their clubs, now a bout is a strategic and intellectual human “chess match”. Even Women’s MMA has seen a surge in fans in the recent years with names like Gina Carano and Cris “Cyborg” Santos being heard worldwide.
So what is Hurtt’s advice for those not sold on the powerhouse sport? Have an open mind and learn about the sport, research what is going on when those “two sweaty guys are rolling around on a mat” a term often said by those who are not fans of MMA. “I’ve never known anyone that gave a chance to Mixed Martial Arts, that actually took the time to learn at least enough to know what they are looking at,” Hurtt explained “that didn’t come away almost a fanatic of it.”
Jeremy Hurtt is hitting the airways in a few different mediums for radio he can be heard on Steve Weimer Live. If print is your style check out his articles on Tjcarpentershow.com and MMALockup.com. Television more of your style? You can watch Off the Mat right here on UATVonline.net or Cox Channel 214 at 9:30 on Friday nights. The Off the Mat podcast of the television show is on demand on their Facebook at www.facebook.com/offthematTV
Bernard Oliver is an Host of Off the Mat, freelance camera man & columnist. For more sports and more info contact Bernard via email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit Off the Mat on Facebook athttp://www.facebook.com/OffthematTV. Follow Bernard on twitter @bernard_oliver