Graduate competes at King of the Cage World Amateur Championship in Las Vegas

Ruth Black

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Tolu "Techdaddy" Agunbiade hits the bag during training at Falls Town Fight Club. Agunbiade fought at The King of the Cage World Amateur Championship on Oct. 19 in Las Vegas. Agunbiade's next fight will be a grappling match at Newberry in Dallas on Nov. 7.

Tolu “Techdaddy” Agunbiade hits the bag during training at Falls Town Fight Club. Agunbiade fought at The King of the Cage World Amateur Championship on Oct. 19 in Las Vegas. Agunbiade’s next fight will be a grappling match at the Newberry Tournament in Dallas on Nov. 7.

“My parents put me in taekwondo when I was a kid. And I’ve had so many schoolyard and street fights leading up to me fighting in a contained setting. Boys will be boys I suppose,” Tolu “Techdaddy” Agunbiade, a 2013 graduate in mass communication and MMA fighter, said.

On Oct. 19, Agunbiade fought in the King of the Cage World Amateur Championship in Las Vegas, the first event of its kind, where he was narrowly defeated by judges’ decision, against Canadian fighter Justin Sander.

According to Agunbiade, Sander is an excellent wrestler, but he had not trained for that type of fighter because his opponent got switched less than two weeks before the fight.

“I received no damage in the fight, but got taken down several times and pretty much held down the majority of the fight.,” Agunbiade said. “He kept it on the ground because that was his game plan – plus he noticed I hit hard. I caught him with an uppercut and a hook that sent him across the cage.”

Last weekend’s fight was just another stepping stone in Agunbiade’s MMA fighting career, but he has had professional fighting on his mind for many years.

“I started boxing in 2008 and have a record of 14 and 4. I’ve never been knocked out,” he said.  “In 2010 I started cage fighting.  My record is now 7 and 4. I have one knock out, 4 submissions and 4 losses by decision. I’ve also competed in a ton of grappling tournaments and have medals to show for it.”

Agunbiade said in 2006, he went to watch a King of the Cage show at the Kiowa Casino and met some other guys fighting on the show that trained in Wichita Falls, Hunter Tucker and Jason Hobbs.

“I hooked up with them and started training with great fighters in this town like Jason Maxwell and current UFC fighter Bubba McDaniel – and the rest is history,” he said.

Agunbiade also takes his training as a fighter very seriously and said he trains at numerous facilities to stay physically on top of his game.

He trains at least five days a week for about four hours per day and gets his boxing, Muay Thai and MMA training in at Falls Town Fighter’s Club located downtown, where he also teaches classes between 5:30 and 7:30 Mondays and Fridays. He also trains and teaches at the Pit MMA in Vernon, takes Jiu Jitsu classes at Red River Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and lifts weights at Anytime Fitness.

“I want to have a well-rounded game,” he said. “Weird work out? I have a shake weight. I believe in it.”

Staying physically fit is only part of the life of an MMA fighter, and Agunbiade also takes measures to maintain his mental strength to leave as little room for doubt as possible, he said.

“In the hours before the fight I like to listen to music to get my mind set to fight mode,” he said. “The music doesn’t necessarily have to be violent. I can listen to something like A Perfect Circle to get me hyped.”

While maintaining physical and mental strength is paramount in the MMA world, the diet of a fighter also needs to be precise and calculated to achieve the best of his or her ability.

“I like to diet down to weight as opposed to dehydration, which is the common thing to do,” he said. “I go on a low-carb, high-protein diet. I don’t drink sodas — just water, juice and milk. I don’t eat after 10. Simple really, and I get great results. I lost 15 pounds over the past couple of months easily that way.”

Justin Sander, a professional MMA fighter from Canada, faces off with Tolu Techdaddy Agunbiade in Las Vegas before the King of the Cage fight that ran live on MavTV. Contributed photo

Justin Sander, a professional MMA fighter from Canada, faces off with Tolu Techdaddy Agunbiade in Las Vegas before the King of the Cage fight that ran live on MavTV. Contributed photo

Agunbiade fought at 155 pounds at the King of the Cage fight on Oct. 19, but said before that he fought at 170. At one point, he even fought at 185 pounds but said he actually had to gain weight for that fight.

“I was ‘jonesing’ to fight that particular time,” he said. “I’m not a fan of cutting weight and like to fight at my body weight. This might change the deeper I get in the game though. There are fighters out there that cut 25 to 30 pounds and come in as beasts fighting at a lower weight class.”

If he had won last Saturday’s fight in devastating fashion, he said, he might have gotten a KOTC contract and several of his fights would have then been televised.

“There were five contracts on the line: two $25,000’s, two $50,000’s and one $100,000. None of us won the contract because the fight wasn’t very exciting — the majority of it was him laying on top of me.”

After his last fight, Agunbiade said he needs to work more on his wrestling because it’s a different art than Jiu Jitsu, and he does not have as much experience in wrestling.

“I should have thrown more things at him,” he said. “I’m more of a counter puncher, but counter punching doesn’t work on someone that isn’t really willing to trade with you.”

Agunbiade received his bachelor’s in mass communication with a minor in digital media from MSU in August 2013 and said his degree has helped him secure some of his fights.

“My mass comm and networking skills helped me get this fight in Vegas,” he said. “I have a lot of awesome friends and contacts in the MMA world. I put my name out there and let it be known I was at the caliber to be part of something like this and it happened.”

He also said that his “corner men” in the cage, Ric Rosalez, owner of The Pit MMA, and Johnny Zadrozny, did a great job both training him and coaching him during his fight last weekend.

Agunbiade will compete in the grappling Newbreed Tournament in Dallas on Nov. 7 and one in December. He hopes to make his professional debut in February of next year.

“I am more ambitious about MMA than I was a week ago,” he said. “Every time I fight I seem to get sucked in deeper. I’m going to make a name for myself in this sport.”

 

 

 

 

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