There’s an old adage that says: When opportunity comes knocking, answer the door. For former UFC Welterweight Brian Ebersole, opportunity came in the form of Evolve MMA offering him a full-time position as the head coach of the prestigious Evolve Fight Team.
For several months, Evolve MMA looked to fill the position. It was certainly no easy task. After all, it would require someone with the leadership and knowledge to head Asia’s most decorated professional fight team. Ebersole, a multiple-time MMA champion in various organizations and UFC veteran, was certainly up for the job.
36-year-old Brian Ebersole hails from Bradley, Illinois, where he started wrestling at 5 years of age at the local youth wrestling club founded by his grandfather. Ebersole grew up around uncles who wrestled in their high school days, which he claims was the reason why he’s “somewhat tough”. “They used to throw me around and smash me when I was young,” Ebersole said. “I was always defending myself at family gatherings.” It was from this wrestling background that Ebersole decided to test himself in the MMA cage.
“I was 19 when I had my first MMA fight,” Ebersole told Evolve Daily. “It was in a small gymnasium at a Catholic High School near Chicago. I was facing a “boxer”, in a ring. I remember watching my wrestling coach, Matt Hughes, in the same gym just a year prior. I sort of tried to emulate his confidence, as I prepared for my bout. I tried to stay stoic during the rules meeting, and I reverted to humor in the 20 minutes before the bout to keep me loose. I rationalized to myself that I should be confident, as I’d had 400-500 wrestling matches and had trained hard my entire life while this guy may or may not have been a lifetime athlete, and had never wrestled. The fight went well enough. I looked goofy on my feet trying a few striking techniques, but was able to get a big takedown and settle onto his back and sink in a rear naked choke for the win.”
Soon after, Ebersole began his career in mixed martial arts. With a professional fighting record of 51-18-1-1, Ebersole has fought in many different promotions. In addition to the UFC, he has competed in Shooto, Strikeforce, IFL, and King Of The Cage. During his UFC career, he earned two Fight Of The Night awards. In 2016, Ebersole announced his retirement after having 71 professional fights between 2000 and 2016.
Today, Ebersole brings a wealth of experience as the new head coach of the Evolve Fight Team. “Even as a coach I can still look forward to remaining a student, and continuing to challenge my mind with the intricacies of MMA without risking my body to the same extent as during my competitive days,” Ebersole shared. “And I look forward to sharing quality experiences with some great athletes; wins, losses, good days, and tough days. MMA training and competition brings about some intense life-moments, and part of my job is to help these athletes frame them properly and use them for growth and improvement.”
There’s no doubt that we all have a lot to look forward to with the addition of Brian Ebersole to the world-class instructor team of Evolve MMA. And nobody is more excited than Ebersole as he shares his goals as the head coach of the Evolve Fight Team with Evolve Daily: “Collectively, I hope to build a culture of hard work and constructive creativity. Each athlete will have their own strengths and ideas. The goal is to create a laboratory setting that allows each of them to work out their own ideas, sharpen their tools, address any weaknesses, and reach peak performance for scheduled bouts. More specific goals will surface, pertaining to individual athletes, as we move forward with the “new” team dynamics and field competition opportunities,” said Ebersole. Exciting things are definitely on the horizon for the Evolve Fight Team – let’s continue to show our support!