On Saturday August 4th, the North American Allied Fight Series will be putting on yet another great mixed martial arts show. The War on the Shore will be live in Geneva,Ohio.
Fighting on the card will be local rising MMA star Brian "The Predator" Rogers. He will be taking on Frank Dachtler in a heavyweight bout. Brian is 5 foot 11 inches and fights at 205 pounds.
TheClevelandFan's own Scott Swerbinsky was able to catch up to Rogers just a few days leading up to his big fight for a sitdown interview.
TCF: Thanks for taking the time to meet with me Brian. Why don't you give fight fans a little background on yourself.
BR: I grew up in Kent,Ohio and attended Kent Roosevelt High School where I played football, wrestled, and threw the shot disc. In high school I was a three time district qualifier in wrestling and two time sectional champ. When I got out of high school I went on to Walsh University in North Canton, Ohio. I lettered all four years and was a starting linebacker for three of those years. I graduated in 2006 and with my undergraduate in education. In the fall of 2007 I took a graduate assistant job at the University of Akron and work with the athletes from all sports in the area of strength and condition. I am currently working on on master's degree in sports science coaching.
TCF: That's an impressive background, what made you get into mixed martial arts?
BR: Well, before getting involved in high school sports, I took karate classes as a kid and achieved my brown belt. After I finished playing football in college I knew I wanted to keep competing at a high level. I look at myself as a gifted athlete and wanted to compete.
TCF: Tell me how it all began for you in the world of mma?
BR: I started training in May of 2006 after graduating college with Victory Opinion MMA Academy aka Team Instigator in Canton under the guidance of Rick and Terry Blackwell(a rising mma fighter with a 4-0 record). My first fight took place a few days after Thanksgiving in the Fight Fest Organization.
TCF: How did that fight turn out? BR: I won by 2nd round TKO.
TCF: Going into Saturday, you hold a 3-1 record, what happened in the other three fights? BR: Both the 2nd and 3rd fight were victories, and both were knockout win in under 30 seconds. The last fight was my first and only loss, I got choked out in a Fight Fest show in Canton.
TCF: Coming off of your first loss, is there extra motivation for you on Saturday? BR: Oh yeah, losing sucks and I want to be the best at everything I do. I feel like I let down my family and friends who are cheering me on and pulling for me to do well. After a loss, you have people come up to you telling you what you did wrong and how to fix it. I want to put those critics to rest and prove myself again on Saturday.
TCF: Give us an idea of how you get ready for a fight.
BR: I put in a lot of work, no doubt about it. Besides training with Team Instigator, at the start of this year I began working with Team Strong Style in Independence. My instructors there are Marcus Maranelli and Pablo Castro. I split my training with both teams depending on the type of training I need. I also work my trainer and nutrititionist Summer Montabone (www.summersfitness.com) four to five days a week. All of my training partners are great and push me to be the best.
TCF: What are your long term goals? BR: I want to be the best at everything I do. I hope to keep winning fights and possibly follow in the footsteps of local fighters who have had fights at the highest levels. Jason Dent (www.griffonrawl-ohio.com) Forrest Petz, and Jeff Cox are a few guys from this area that I respect and hope to get where they have all been.
TCF: I understand you have landed a good number of sponsors that are helping you out. Anything you'd like to pass along? BR: I just want to thank them all for everything they have done for me. My sponsors are American Body Building, Optimum Nutrition, Crow's Auto Body, Botara Euro-Spa, Armstrong Painting, Wireless Toys, Defiance Tattoos, Summersfitness Inc, Diamond Royale, and of course both Team Instigator and Team Strong Style.
TCF: Brain, thank you for taking the time and I truly look forward to seeing you fight on Saturday. Good luck.