Jake Shields, a two-time junior college All-American and MMA (mixed martial arts) star, officially signed with the UFC on Monday, and will make his first appearance in the Octagon in October.
“UFC contract officially signed,” Shields reported on his official Twitter account. “Fighting Kampmann in CA in a few months. Thanks to @danawhite and everyone for their support.”
Kampmann is Martin Kampmann, who Shields is expected to fight at UFC 121 in Anaheim on October 30.
Shields also confirmed previous reports that he will drop back down to the welterweight division, after spending the last three fights at 185 pounds while in Strikeforce.
The 31-year-old Shields, with an MMA record of 25-4-1, had been Strikeforce’s middleweight champ but was unable to reach an agreement with that promotion. According to MMAFighting.com, in April, at WEC 48, Shields was shown on camera sitting next to UFC president Dana White, who mouthed the words, “He’s mine.”
“I’m excited that everything is finalized and I’m going to get to continue to test myself against the best,” Shields said via text message through his public relations agent. “Fighting in the UFC has been a lifelong dream. Big thanks to Dana, my team and all my family and friends for all the support.”
Jake Shields has strong amateur wrestling credentials. According to his biography at his official website, Shields launched his wrestling career at age nine. He was a California state qualifier for Calaveras High School. He was a two-time junior college All-American at Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo. According to the community college’s website, Shields was 27-7 in 1997, wrestling at 177 and 190 pounds (stepping up once to wrestle at heavyweight; he won that match). The following season, Shields had a 29-7 record at 197 pounds. He ranks second in the program’s history in terms of number of wins (56), and winning percentage (.800).
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MMAFighting.com: Jake Shields officially signs with UFC, will fight Martin Kampmann at UFC 121
MMAWeekly.com: Jake Shields signs, UFC debut against Kampmann
Jake Shields: Official website
Scott Casber of Takedown Radio (TDR): Audio interview with Jack Shields, father of Jake Shields, on his son signing with UFC
College Wrestling 101: Links to articles answering basic questions about wrestling, including rules, scoring, uniforms, more
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