MMA For Real continues to bring you some of the best talent in North Carolina and this one is no different. In fact, I've spoken to several people that have put this guy near the top of the list in regards to amateur lightweights in this state. He's 5-0 and the current Fightlab Promotions Lightweight champion in Jacob Allman. Allman will be defending his title in Charlotte this weekend at the Cagefights At The Epicenter 2 event against Chris Smith(3-1). Allman speaks to us about the upcoming title defense, what you can expect to see when he fights, and what he's looking forward to the most this year. Check it all out below:
Kelvin Hunt-Jacob, tell us a little about yourself and how you got into MMA?
Jacob Allman- I am 24 years old. I began wrestling in middle school and amassed a 170-13 record in high school including 2 state championships. It also helped that my older brother was a NC state champ in wrestling too. I wrestled in College(Citadel)for two years and ended up getting pretty burnt out of wrestling. I ended up in western NC just taking it easy and I started to get the itch to compete again. A former college teammate of mine, Johnny Buck, was training and fighting out of Asheville, NC. He set me up with Blake Queen in Sylva, NC and then it just kinda happened from there.
Kelvin Hunt-Well, we would definitley have to say wrestling is your forte...haha. You have a big fight coming up this weekend as you'll be defending your Fightlab Promotions lightweight title. Tell us a little about where you train and who some of your training partners are? What's the best thing about training with them?
Jacob Allman-I train mostly at Huskey Submissions in Asheville under the instruction of Johnny Huskey. Johnny is a bad man. My training partners most of the time are Matt Covan, Adam Dehart, Johnny Buck, and Blaine Thomas. The best thing about training with these guys is we are pretty much the most relentless group of fighters I have ever met. Dehart is in your face, Buck is the only one that can out-wrestle me, Blaine is nasty on the ground. I owe a lot of my progress and confidence to Covan, because it helps having a pro fighter around that fights the same weight that you do. I also recently spent time training with Joe Carroll in Charlotte. I also need to thank Clyde Dull, Blake Queen, Earl Ammons, Ron Smith, Craig Naegler, Eric McConnell, Ryan Conn, and Austin Reece because it all started with them.
Kelvin Hunt-I know you've been in training camp for this fight. What's a typical day like for you while you are in training camp?
Jacob Allman-To be honest with you my weeks are crazy. I am in my last semester of college and have night classes on Monday and Wednesday. I also work Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights at a bar near where I live. So typically I only train 2 days a week actual mma (Tues/Thurs). I just condition when I can and get as much work in as possible on Tuesdays and Thursdays. This is also why I feel I will be a much better pro fighter than I am currently. I will actually be able to train full time come summer time and you will see a completely different fighter in the future. This 7 days a week shit is killing me right now though. But as far as a typical training session at Huskey: mad conditioning and live sparring.
Kelvin Hunt-I've seen a couple of your fights and your wrestling was really good as we've already mentioned. If you could name a part of your game that needs the most work, what would it be?
Jacob Allman-I think I can improve all aspects of my game, wrestling included. I just need more training time with my hands and my submissions. The trick is to just ‘stay the course.' Don't get too worked up over wins or losses. Just keep training as much as you can and work in all areas: stand up, takedowns, and ground game.
Kelvin Hunt-Now you are 5-0 and you'll be taking on Chris Smith who's 3-1, and he basically came out and said he wanted to fight you right here on www.mmaforreal.com. When the fight was presented to you, what were your initial thoughts?
Jacob Allman-He called me out so we were going to fight.
Kelvin Hunt-What do you know about Chris as a fighter, and how do you expect this fight on the 26th to go down?
Jacob Allman-I don't really know much about him as a fighter. I'm guessing that his wrestling is probably not as good as mine. I see me winning.
Kelvin Hunt-Out of your 5 wins, you have four wins via unanimous decision including your last three wins. Will you put any added pressure on yourself to go out and finish this fight, or is a win a win in your book?
Jacob Allman-A win is a win, I am constantly looking to finish fights. With that being said, I will not get out of position to try something. I think the finishes will come in time. The best thing for me is to just keep fighting and getting that experience.
Kelvin Hunt-You've beaten some pretty good guys, and many consider you one of the top amateur lightweights in the state. Who has been your toughest opponent thus far and why?
Jacob Allman-This is somewhat a toss up between Kurtis Cloward and Kevin Forant. Both of them were tough. Kurtis had good technical striking and submissions. Forant was very strong and actually took my back for a second. They are actually fighting on the March 26th card. I will probably sneak out of the locker room to watch this one because it should be fight of the night.
Kelvin Hunt-Yep, that should be a barnburner. It's supposed to be a packed crowd at the event in Charlotte this weekend. If someone has never seen you fight, what can they expect from you once this fight starts?
Jacob Allman-I always try to get a big slam in. You can definitely expect to see takedowns and ground and pound.
Kelvin Hunt-Tell us something about Jacob that people would be surprised to know?
Jacob Allman-I was a high school quarterback. I am a pretty good whitewater kayaker. I'm not bad at chess and I'm a good cook.
Kelvin Hunt-This will be your 6th fight as an amateur, so you have the required 5 completed to turn pro. How many more amateur fights do you want to get under your belt before making the transition?
Jacob Allman-As many as possible. I wrestled for free my whole life, the money isn't that big of a deal. I am really just waiting on the ISCF(International Sport Combat Federation) world tournament at the end of the year. This is an opportunity to get several fights in, on the same day. I like the idea of that and think this is how all shows should be. I just think the experience of an MMA tournament will be awesome. After that, you can pay me to fight.
Kelvin Hunt-Sound good. Thanks for taking the time to talk with MMA For Real. Are there any sponsors that you'd like to mention?
Jacob Allman-Thanks to No Quarter, my coaches, teammates, training partners, and family/friends that support me.