Former Bama LB Eryk Anders To Fight In Tuscaloosa


Eryk Anders, a linebacker for the University of Alabama through 2009, has taken up professional mixed martial arts (MMA) and will be making his professional debut in Tuscaloosa on August 22. He announced this exciting event via Twitter yesterday:

I had the opportunity to ask Eryk some questions concerning his time at Alabama, MMA, and the upcoming fight.

First, we had to start with a few questions about his time at Alabama. After all, he is a national champion. As always, I asked the most unoriginal question to start things off, “What was it like playing for The University of Alabama?”

Anders responded, “Playing at UA was a great honor and privilege. The best part of the experience was the life long friends that I made with people that I otherwise would not have had the experience to meet from other parts of the country and walks of life.”

My second question about his time at Alabama was once again not very original, but it must be asked. What was his favorite moment while at Alabama? Eryk Anders responded quickly telling me “that sack in the Texas game.” Ah, it was great to see all those sacks during the Texas game. Before Texas played Alabama the only type of sack Texas seem to know was a huge sack of money. Great memories.

For anyone who would relive that wonderful game, here you go:

We then delved directly into how Eryk Anders become involved and interested in MMA. The following is Q&A concerning his background with MMA/wrestling.

How did you become interested in MMA?

Honestly, I got involved in MMA because I was bored and wanted something to do. However, I’m not one to train just for fun. I enjoy competition and putting my newly acquired skills to the test so naturally I had to fight.

Did you fight prior to starting your career after college?

I had junior varsity level experience with wrestling, so no I prior to training. I had no experience.

[He said chuckling]

I have always and will always be a workhorse. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday I get up do my strength and conditioning from 5-630 in the morning. Tuesday and Thursday I do jujitsu in the 530-7 am. I work Monday-Friday 8-5 then go back from 5:45-

His work is obviously already paying off, he won a middleweight crown in Memphis just a week ago.

What should people get out of MMA events?
I think some people appreciate that its not a barroom brawl and there is strategy and beauty in the way someone fights. Others may enjoy watching someone get beat up. I personal enjoy the individual battle going on between the two fighters in the cage and seeing which one of the two is going to come out on top.
How do you think this fight will benefit both the sport and Tuscaloosa?
I think with me being a former football player at UA along with the combination of not fighting in Alabama in while will draw a large crowd and will show the people who are on the fence about this sport will realize that it’s not what people think. Its much more than tw0 guys just beating each other up. There is strategy and skill involved in every fight and I think that those in attendance will realize that and will become a fan of the sport. 
Eryk asked me to contact the promoter of the fight, Dave Elder, concerning questions about where it will be and if it will be televised. Mr. Elder was not immediately available, and I will write a follow-up article once I can reach him with that information.