Background - Randy Couture was born in
Lynnwood, Washington. Like many present day MMA competitors,
Couture wrestled throughout junior high school as well as high
school in addition to participating in football. After
completing high school, Couture joined the US Army where he
would obtain some basic boxing skills.
After serving in the Army, Couture then attended Oklahoma State
University where he would amass the collegiate honors of
three-time wrestling All American for Oklahoma State University
and four-time Greco Roman in the Nationals. After completing
college and earning a degree in German, Couture still dreamed of
participating in the Olympics.
In February of 1996, Couture had seen a former college friend
participating in a UFC competition. This friend was none other
than Don Frye. After watching Don Frye compete in UFC 8,
Couture's interest in the UFC had been sparked and he wondered
if he too could be successful in such a competition. Couture
submitted an application to the UFC but at the time the UFC had
quota's established regarding the number of fighters that would
participate from a particular style of fighting. Unfortunately,
SEG had already filled the quota for wrestlers for their next
event. Discarding the lost opportunity to compete for the UFC,
Couture then signed on with an organization that sought to bring
national attention to amateur wrestling. The organization was
named "RAW" which stood for "Real American Wrestling".
Two months after signing with RAW, Couture began training for
the PAN American Games which was to be held in Puerto Rico.
While training for the upcoming PAN American Games, Couture was
notified by RAW cofounder Ricco Chapirelli that an opening had
become available for a wrestler in SEG's UFC 13 event. With only
two weeks notice, Couture jumped at the opportunity and began
training for his UFC debut. With only a grappling background and
some prior experience boxing while in the Army, Couture would
become one of the most well known and highly respected wrestlers
to enter the sport of MMA competition.
Striking - Randy Couture has continued to
evolve into a top notch striker. He had obtained some basic
boxing skills while in the Army, but it is his recent training
that has proven he can stand with the best strikers in the
sport. Couture realizes that striking is not his primary weapon,
but it is a weapon available at his disposal if needed. Like
many wrestlers, he uses the "ground and pound" technique to
perfection. He uses punches, elbows, and knees to dismantle his
opponents once mounted.
Grappling - Being an Olympic level wrestler,
Couture has a lot of power and is great at both takedowns and
ground work. He can move most opponents around at will, which
allows him to takedown even the biggest men with ease, keep them
down, and have his way with them. Even when he has a momentary
lapse in control, Couture can quickly and masterfully regain the
Submission - Being a Greco-Roman wrestler,
Couture has a powerful upper body that he will use to sink in a
basic hold, but nothing to fancy. His submissions are strength
Strengths - Randy Couture has one of the
greatest natural qualities, patience! He has displayed his
patience time and time again. It is this tool that he used to
gas out Vitor Belfort in their first fight and go the distance
with (and defeat) the likes of Maurice Smith and Pedro Rizzo.
Being a Greco-Roman wrestler, Couture is familiar with the
importance of maintaining the point advantage in case the fight
comes down to a decision. Couture will often make every effort
to maintain control while taking few risks. Although Couture
consistently displays extreme patience, he is one of the more
aggressive competitors in the sport.
While competing in the heavyweight division there were times
when Couture's cardio appeared suspect, but this is no longer
the case as Couture is presently in better shape than most
Weaknesses - Couture has become extremely
confident with his striking abilities and he may occasionally
choose to go toe-to-toe even when it is not necessary.
Conclusion - Although Randy Couture may be
upwards of tens years older than the competitors he will face,
he is by no means the old man in the Octagon. Since his debut in
the UFC, Couture has continued to be nothing less than amazing.
After vacating his Heavyweight title and leaving for a period of
time, Couture returned just as strong.
Couture is not the typical "ground and pound" wrestler as he
is three dimensional and has fewer weaknesses than any other
wrestler turned mixed martial artist. Randy Couture is the only
fighter (at the time of this posting) to have held a title in
two separate weight divisions within the UFC (two time UFC
Heavyweight Champion and two time UFC Light Heavyweight
Champion). "The Natural" will definitely be a force for the
remainder of his career.
Prepared by Jim Cryan
Randy Couture profile
8 - 0
(Win - Loss - Draw)
6 (T)KOs (40.00%)
2 Submissions (13.33%)
7 Decisions (46.67%)
4 (T)KOs (50.00%)
4 Submissions (50.00%)
When and why did you start training for fighting?
I hadn't really seen the UFC until I saw Don Frye fight. Don
Frye and I were pretty good friends in college, so it was
something right away I thought was pretty interesting. About
nine months later I was in UFC 13. It was an interesting
combination of fear and excitement competing in the UFC the
What ranks and titles have you held? Former 2
time UFC World Heavyweight champion, Former 2 time UFC World
Light Heavyweight champion. Some of Randy's wrestling
accomplishments are: Four time World Team member, Placed 9th in
the 1997 World Championship in Poland, Pan American Games
champion, Four time National Champion in Greco-Roman, three time
All-American in college, two time runner-up at NCAA National
Championships. Alternate for the Olympic team 4 times.
Do you have any heroes? As a kid, my childhood
heroes were skiers. I was an avid skier, and aspired to be an
Olympic skier. Oddly enough, I ended up in wrestling and
pursued Olympic wrestling. In college, I looked up to Kenny
Monday. I aspired to wrestle and compete like Kenny Monday, the
Olympic champion from 1988. But, I have a lot of respect for
all athletes who do the things we do and make the sacrifices we
have to make to compete at a high level.
What is your favorite technique? Takedowns and
What does it mean for you to fight in the UFC?
Itís an accomplishment that Iím proud of and Iím happy to have
been able to be a part of and be involved in. All the things you
get to do as fighters, itís a great experience.
Did you go to college and if so what degree did you
earn? I attended Oklahoma State University and earned a
degree in German.
What was your job before you started fighting?
Randy was in the US Army for 6 years where wrestled and did a