Are you up to date on your bjj black belts?
For every Rafael Mendes and Rodolfo Viera, there are a number of BJJ Black Belts that get slept on. They could go unnoticed for a number of reasons such as: their affiliation, bjj politics, not coming from a widely recognized academy, etc. We have already seen one bjj fighter get completely ignored by the jiu jitsu media this last 2012 year. He happened to be the first ever bjj fighter to win the double grandslam at any belt level. Have you heard of this guy? No? Do you live under a rock? Of course, I am talking about Keenan “The Cobra” Cornelius. Although he destroyed his competition in all of the major tournaments in both his division and in the absolute (something that no one has EVER done before), the mainstream jiu jitsu media completely black balled him. This blog post is not about him, but, coincidentally, about one of his bjj black belt teammates who has also gone under the radar despite being one of the most decorated american bjj black belts (10 IBJJF Medals this year alone) and currently ranked #8 among bjj black belts.
I am referring to bjj black belt Marcos “Yemaso” Torregrosa.
I haven’t the slightest clue how this bjj black belt goes under the radar. He has competed and placed at every bjj belt level and every year since 2000. Now the only official representative of Team Lloyd Irvin on the west coast, Marcos has been on a tear and bringing the medal chaser mentality to California. He owns and operates his own Sacramento Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Academy which has been pretty successful in competition as well. This year alone they have amassed a great deal of medals. So, tell me how is it that a bjj black belt who has done so well in competition and has done so well as an instructor not reach bjj stardom? There aren’t many successful athletes that translate over to good coaching. And, most great coaches were never very successful in competition. If this guy is able to do both of those at a high level, why isn’t he on every american bjj black belt magazine?
Perhaps it’s due to his affiliation. TLI has a lot of haters. But, you CANNOT argue against success. TLI has proven to be successful. I bet if Yemaso was part of the Gracie Barra organization he would have much more coverage. Whatever the case may be, I’m sure he makes no excuses about the lack of attention coming his way. Champions do not make excuses. “Those who are good at making excuses are seldom good at anything else.” Bonus points for anyone who can tell me who said that.
Check out this interview with Fight Fans Radio via the BJJ Addict Podcast where they interview bjj black belt Marcos. The interview is jam packed with information as Marcos truly opens up. You can hear him cover such topics as:
- His Brown Belt who is ranked #11 in the world.
- His opinion of BJJ Bitchassness
- What it’s like to be a part of America’s #1 BJJ Team
- What he thinks about: Rafael Mendes, Jacare, Terere, Micheal Langhi, and Leo Lo
- How he has been able to train 3 times a day for over 10 years
- Staying relevant in bjj as an instructor
- The importance of watching competition footage
- Metamoris and his favorites to win
- The criminality of ref decisions in finals matches
- Why he doesn’t agree with the bjj elite migrating to mma
- Which bjj belt was the absolute hardest for him
- What it was like training with UFC fighter Gabriel Napao Gonzaga
- The best advice he has ever received regarding bjj
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