by Jeff Cain
Drew Fickett gets set to take on Josh Neer on August 6th, live on Spike TV. With a professional Mixed Martial Arts record of 26-3-0, and having fought in the UFC once before, Fickett should have the experience factor on his side going into the match. Drew spoke with MMAWeekly SoundOff Radio recently about his fighting background, the pressure of competing in the UFC, and his up coming bout with Josh Neer. Sixteen fighters in sixteen days continues with Drew Fickett.
Fickett has come a long way from wrestling at a community college in Tucson, Arizona to the ranks of UFC fighter. During college Drew was struck head on by a pickup truck while riding his motorcycle. “I was hit by a truck and broke my knee and two bones in my foot…I spent like four years practicing in college, but I never really got to compete too much because of injury, and the lack of a red shirt I got.” Fickett told MMAWeekly. He added, “I couldn’t do anything for like a year. I mean I still tried to lift, but obviously I couldn’t lift my lower body.”
Drew fought MMA before attending college. He commented, “Well I had been fighting in like Rage in the Cage when I first started. You know beating up a bunch of bums just like Neer’s used to. After my injury I decided to, you know, jump right back into a fight, and I trained. That was actually the first time I fought Edwin Dewees was like right after a year of healing up and stuff.”
Drew made his UFC debut at UFC 51, in a losing effort against Nick Diaz. They say no matter how many fights a fighter has on his record, nothing prepares them for competing in the spectacle that is the UFC. Fickett can certainly relate. About his debut bout against Diaz, Fickett said, “I just thank Nick for basically fighting me, and giving the opportunity for me to fight a worthy opponent my first fight. It’s not like he was some bum. You know? I really don’t know if I could have beat anybody that night. Not taking anything away from Nick because he’s an excellent fighter.”
Drew went on to say, “I mean it’s one thing to fight in another show, and it’s one thing to fight in the UFC. At the time I had like 26 fights. I thought I was a much more experienced person, and it was actually quite the opposite. I mean I felt like it was my first fight ever. I was, I hate to admit it, but I was in tears the morning of the fight. I was so nervous, and obviously any fighter knows you’re not afraid of any opponent. It’s just the fear of competition, and I couldn’t handle the whole UFC, the lights, miking up my corner man, all the cameras, and pictures, and all that jazz. It was just too much for me, and I just froze.”
This time around Drew knows what to expect, and feels that will make all the difference in the world. He said, “I know what to expect, and I’m kind of on the other side of the book now because I know that Josh Neer’s never fought in a big show, and it’s going to be something different for him. I mean he’s in for an awakening, you know, and I’m gong to try to make it a rude awakening.”
When questioned about what advantages he has over his opponent, Josh Neer, Drew said, “My wrestling, my striking, and my ground.” Anticipating what may transpire on August 6th, Fickett commented, “I think it will probably go to the ground because he’s a high school wrestler, and I’m a college wrestler. I mean come on.”
Will the experience of fighting in the UFC once before help Drew Fickett when he faces off with Josh Neer August 6th, live on Spike TV? Only time will tell, but he remains confident about his chances. To hear all of what Fickett had to say click on the radio archive. Not a MMAWeekly Premium member? There’s not time like the present to find out what you’ve been missing, and become a Premium Member for only five dollars a month.