At times when you decide to transition from one sport to another can be hard, even if the sport you are moving too, uses your current sport as one of its base disciplines. But that has not been so for Ed Ruth.
Ruth is mostly known for being a three time NCAA champion in wrestling at Penn State University, but after success in the sport, and even going onto world championships, he decided it was time to take the next step.
The young Penn State alum decided to make the move from competitive wrestling, to something with a bit more, as he decided to make the transition into the world of Mixed Martial Arts.
And in 2015 Bellator Boss Scott Coker came calling, and offered the Pennsylvania native a chance to step into the cage for the first time.
Obviously Ruth jumped at the chance of honing his skills with one of the premier MMA organizations, and knew the competition would be tough, so to start his training, enlisted the help of MMA bad boy, and former UFC Light-Heavyweight champion, Jon ‘Bones’ Jones.
But it would be over a year before he would step into the cage for the first time, as Ruth wanted to continue his wrestling career at the pinnacle, by attempting to compete for the USA in the 2016 Olympic games in Rio.
But the Olympics were not to be for the young MMA hopeful, and it was straight into training for his Bellator debut.
The stage was set at Bellator 163 in November 2016, the wrestling supremo, and Penn State legend would step into the cage for his first foray into the world of mixed martial arts.
His first opponent would be Dustin Collins-Miles, and Ruth didn’t hang about, taking him only 3:19 of the first round, Ruth dispatched his opponent with a vicious TKO victory, telling the world he had arrived.
He would wait around for his second fight either, with just over a month between them, Ruth would appear in a Bellator cage for the second time on December 10th 2016 at Bellator 168.
Ruth was looking to keep the hype train going, his next opponent was Emanuele Palombi. This time Ruth was quicker, finishing his opponent at 1:37 of the first round, again by TKO. Ruth was definitely using his wrestling pedigree, and making what seems to be a seamless transition into the MMA world.
And he wasn’t done there, as in March this year, armed with only a blue belt in Brazilian Ju-Jitsu, Ruth entered the Pan-America championship, losing in the final to Connor DeAngelis, on points.
But this Friday, April 21st 2017, Ruth will make his return to the MMA cage, as he again turns out on a Bellator event, this time going up against David Mundell.
Mundell is also making his Bellator debut, but lost his last fight, in Titan FC to Preston Parsons, via submission. So on paper this could look like a good match up for Ruth, who not only armed with superior wrestling, seems to be adding a decent BJJ side to his game, which as the years drag on will make him possibly one of the best on the ground.
I do see Ruth walking away from this with a third straight victory, however I think he will break his streak of TKO victories, and submit Mundell, again in the first.