Randy Couture



Randy Duane Couture (born June 22, 1963, Lynnwood, Washington, U.S.) is a Greco-Roman wrestler and professional mixed martial arts fighter. He is currently the UFC Heavyweight Champion and a member of the UFC Hall of Fame. He is the only athlete to have held championship titles in both the heavyweight and light heavyweight divisions of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, as well as the only five-time champion in UFC history, earning him the nicknames "The Natural" and, later, "Captain America". He, along with Robert Follis, once headed Team Quest, a camp of fighters based out of Gresham, Oregon. In 2005, Couture moved to Las Vegas, where he still resides.

Couture lived in Corvallis, Oregon throughout most of his professional career. He also served as an assistant wrestling coach and strength and conditioning coach for Oregon State University. Couture's preferred method of offense in mixed martial arts competition is what is commonly referred to as 'Ground and Pound', in which a fighter uses his wrestling ability by taking his opponent down to the mat, establishing top position, and successively striking the opponent. In addition to his wrestling background, Couture has displayed a variety of skills in both boxing and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and has submitted two opponents using different chokeholds.

Before entering the UFC, Randy Couture served in the U.S. Army from 1982–1988. Upon discharge, he was a three-time Olympic team alternate (1988, 1992 and 1996); a semifinalist at the 2000 Olympic Trials; a three-time National Collegiate Athletic Association D-I All-American; and a two-time NCAA finalist.

Randy Couture debuted in the UFC on May 30, 1997 as part of UFC 13: The Ultimate Force. At the time, the event consisted of two four-man tournaments: one in the lightweight (under 200 lb) division and one in the heavyweight (200 lb and over) division. Couture fought in the heavyweight tournament, defeating Tony Halme and Steven Graham to win it. His next match was an elimination bout for the heavyweight title against the young Brazilian "Phenom", Vitor Belfort. Randy scored a TKO victory.

Couture won his first Heavyweight title via decision in a 1997 match against kickboxer Maurice Smith. Couture was afterwards stripped of the title when he could not come to contractual terms with the UFC and its parent company at the time, Semaphore Entertainment Group. After leaving the UFC, Couture signed with the RINGS organization, a fightsport promotion primarily based out of Japan. His tenure with RINGS would prove to be short-lived. He returned to the UFC in 2000, where he recaptured the Heavyweight title from Kevin Randleman at UFC 28 on November 17 of that year.

After two consecutive losses in the heavyweight division to larger opponents (Ricco Rodriguez and a title loss to Josh Barnett) Couture moved down a weight class to fight at 205 lbs in the UFC's light-heavyweight division. In his light-heavyweight debut, Couture took on long-time number one contender Chuck Liddell for the Interim Light-Heavyweight Championship. Couture won by TKO in the third round, and became the only UFC competitor to win championship titles in two weight classes. His next match was billed as a "Champion vs. Champion" fight in order to settle who was the rightful, undisputed champion of the division; Couture faced the five-time defending champion Tito Ortiz for the Undisputed Light-Heavyweight title. He scored a unanimous decision and became the undisputed UFC Light Heavyweight Champion at age 40.

On April 16, 2005, Couture lost his title and suffered the first knockout loss of his career in a rematch with Chuck Liddell. Couture came back in August with a win over Mike van Arsdale to reestablish himself as a top contender. He faced Liddell again for the third and final time in a championship match on February 4, 2006 at UFC 57; he did not succeed, and lost due to knockout. Immediately after the match, he announced his retirement from the sport.

On June 24, 2006, during the Ultimate Fighter 3 Finale broadcast on Spike TV, Couture became the fourth fighter to be inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame, joining Royce Gracie, Dan Severn, and Ken Shamrock.

Couture, after retiring from the professional fighting circuit, began embarking on a variety of activities, including appearing at UFC events as a regular broadcast commentator and as co-host of Before/After The Bell on The Fight Network. He will also appear in the upcoming Rob Schneider comedy Big Stan, along with fellow mixed martial artists Don Frye and Bob Sapp. Couture would still compete athletically; on November 17, 2006, he faced Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu champion Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza in a submission wrestling match. The bout ended in a draw.

On January 11, 2007, Couture appeared for an interview on the Spike TV magazine show, Inside the UFC to announce his return from retirement. In a conversation with Joe Rogan, Couture confirmed that he would be facing Tim Sylvia for the UFC Heavyweight Championship title on March 3, 2007 and revealed that he had signed a four-fight, two-year deal with the company. He will be 45 years old when the contract expires.

Randy was featured on Spike TV's reality show "Pros vs. Joes" Season 2, which premiered on January 25, 2007. His teammates were Michael Irvin, Kevin Willis, and Jose Canseco.

On March 3, 2007, at UFC 68, Couture defeated then-champion Tim Sylvia by unanimous decision to claim his third UFC Heavyweight Title, this time at the age of 43. Couture, who used head-movement and boxing techniques, overwhelmed the larger Sylvia in both striking and grappling, including a knockdown in the first 8 seconds of the fight. Couture was able to take Sylvia down numerous times, which led to a 50-45 on all of the judges scorecards. Couture's victory at UFC 68 made him the first five-time champion in UFC history.

Dana White has said that Mirko 'Cro Cop' will fight Couture in the Summer assuming Cro Cop is not defeated at UFC 70.

Couture has three children: 2 children with his 1st wife Sharon, a 3rd son with his 2nd wife Tricia. His current wife is Kim.

Honors:

* Amateur
o Pan American Championship Greco-Roman Seniors 90kg 2nd place (June 13, 1990)
o Pan American Championship Greco-Roman Seniors 90kg winner (January 1, 1991)
o Pan American Championship Greco-Roman Seniors 90kg 2nd place (January 1, 1992)
o Pan American Championship Greco-Roman Seniors 97kg 3rd place (May 21, 1997)
o Pan American Championship Greco-Roman Seniors 97kg 2nd place (March 24, 1998)
o Pan American Games Greco-Roman Seniors 90kg winner (August 6, 1991)
o FILA test tournament Greco-Roman Seniors 97kg 3rd place (March 14, 1998)
o FILA World Cup Greco-Roman Seniors 90kg 3rd place (November 9, 1991)
o FILA World Cup Greco-Roman Seniors 90kg 3rd palce (November 21, 1992)

* Professional
o UFC 13 Heavyweight tournament winner
o Two Time UFC Light Heavyweight Champion
o Interim UFC Light Heavyweight Champion
o Three Time UFC Heavyweight Champion
o Ultimate Fighting Championship Hall of Fame
o First Five-time champion in UFC history

* Self
o On a January 20th episode of Inside the UFC, Randy considered his cauliflower ear an honor and trophy.Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, with no Front-Cover Texts, and with no Back-Cover Texts.
Virtual Magic is a human knowledge database blog. Text Based On Information From Wikipedia, Under The GNU Free Documentation License. Copyright (c) 2007 Virtual Magic. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.1 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the section entitled "GNU Free Documentation License".

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