Nicco Fertitta carries a heavy burden with him, as the son of UFC co-owner and CEO Lorenzo Fertitta.
Instead of smashing heads inside a cage – or working in a boardroom – the younger Fertitta does his damage out on the football field.
As a safety for Bishop Gorman in Nevada, Nicco has received several college scholarship offers. He made his choice for a future over the weekend, agreeing to attend the University of Notre Dame.
Fertitta is listed as a three-star recruit by most services.
“Congrats Nicco,” UFC president Dana White posted on Twitter. “Big time kid.”
The UFC will never pair a man vs. a woman, but there is a member of the current roster that believes UFC bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey could hang with men.
In fact, Jake Ellenberger actually believes that “Rowdy” could defeat male members of the bantamweight division.
“She is freakishly strong,” said Ellenberger, during a recent interview with MMA Sentinel. “People thought I was crazy when I said she would beat a lot of guys in her weight class, but she is really extremely strong.
“She’s one of those people that works really hard. I didn’t realize that until I had spent more time around her in the gym.”
Rousey’s accomplishments are pretty well known by now, as she is a perfect 9-0 inside the cage. She finished fellow Olympic medalist Sara McMann this past February in the first round, earning her first victory by something other than armbar.
UFC president Dana White has made public fights that were not yet fully signed, sealed and delivered. So he knows first-hand that premature announcements can come back to bite you.
As a promotion, the UFC has become accustom to rescheduling fights after injuries to the athletes. The latest, UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman, is forcing White to take a different approach to his game.
“We’re still working on a lot of stuff,” said White, during an interview with MMAjunkie.com. “Ever since Weidman went down and needed knee surgery, we’ve been moving things around and shaking things up. I’m still working on all that.”
“All that” includes a rumored Dan Henderson-Daniel Cormier bout, along with where Chael Sonnen-Wanderlei Silva will take place.
“A lot of stuff was getting announced prematurely and that drives me crazy,” White said. “There was a lot of premature stuff out there about fights that were going to happen. Most if it is not true because none of it’s done yet.”
Kenny Robertson’s first trip to Brazil was a perfect one, as the UFC fighter scored a submission victory over Thiago Perpetuo last month.
Competing in another country is nothing new for Robertson, but doing so in Brazil was. He’s previously fought in Canada and Finland, along with Puerto Rico.
“We were escorted to the event venue by security guards with automatic rifles, so that was different,” said Robertson, during a recent interview with FightLine. “I knew that I would get booed and had prepared for it.”
Taking on a Brazilian, Robertson (13-3) left the crowd stunned in silence after securing a rear-naked choke on Perpeuto in the first round. It was his second submission victory since signing with the UFC, and sixth of his career.
“There were still some boos but not nearly as many (after the fight),” he said. “I’m not sure if the crowd was more respectful or just quieted. Either way, I do respect how Brazilians get behind their native fighters.”
Robertson was coming off a 2013 decision loss to Sean Pierson. He is now 2-3 in five UFC appearances, with the other defeats being to Aaron Simpson and Mike Pierce.
A former wrestler at Eastern Illinois University, Robertson has turned himself into a well-versed expert when it comes to the submission game. He’s won fights via rear-naked choke, a modified kneebar, keylock and armbar since turning pro in 2008.
“Once I hit the mat, I’m just always thinking ‘improve position,’” he said. “I went for the rear-naked and had to adjust to a short choke. If you look, it’s not a rear-naked, it’s a short choke.”
After the fight, Robertson took a few extra days to relax and enjoy the weather in Brazil, as he said he “hung out with my wife and cornermen at the beach. It was nice.”
Two issues did come up once he reached the foreign country, though, involving his diet.
“Only having bottled water and no Subway sucked, but other than that, it was normal,” Robertson said.
Now back home in Ilinois, Robertson is in his “prep period.”
“I’m slowly getting back into training,” he added. “I don’t feel the need to call any one person out. I’ll fight whoever they put in front of me.”
Former UFC light heavyweight champion Quinton “Rampage” Jackson hasn’t given up on a career in pro wrestling.
Jackson, who returns to the cage later this year at Bellator: Alvarez vs. Chandler III against “King Mo” Lawal in the finals of the season 10 light heavyweight tournament, is planning to start training again after the fight.
“Finally got the pro wrestling ring up in the new gym,” he posted on Instagram. “Gonna start back training with my coach Chavo Guerrero Jr. after my next fight.”
Guerrero is a former WWE star who last competed for TNA, which is also the wrestling home of Jackson.