Can an MMA fighter take on some of the best that the military has to offer in a series of challenges and come out on top? That’s what we’ll find out Wednesday night when Ultimate Fighter alum and IFL veteran Alex Schoenauer steps into the world of the Discovery Channel’s latest show, One Man Army.
“Jay Hieron told me about the show,” said Schoenauer. “There was a poster or something for it at Xtreme Couture and he called me and said I’d be perfect for it.
“I sent my application in and sent a short video of myself for the producers, and the next thing I know they were calling me to be on the show.”
One Man Army, hosted by Man/Woman Survival’s Mykel Hawke (a former Special Forces Green Beret), takes some of the best in military, law enforcement, and extreme sports, and pits them against each other in a three-part challenge intended to test their speed, strength, and intelligence.
For Schoenauer, the show represented an opportunity to take his love for the extreme to a new arena.
“I’m always going out and doing stuff that a lot of my friends say is crazy and they won’t even do,” he told MMAWeekly.com. “(Things like) going rappelling, jumping into caves, going out on the open ocean in a 10-foot skiff with Tyson (Griffin) and having to call the Coast Guard, and crazy stuff like that; just pushing the limits.
“This supposedly was supposed to be about pushing your limits with crazy challenges and stuff that’s scary to do and that’s possibly (going to cause) bodily injury. They even had in the application that you had to sign in case of dismemberment that you’re releasing all authorities, producers from liability (should something catastrophic occur).”
While he had less experience in the kinds of skills needed for the challenges than his competitors, Schoenauer feels he wasn’t totally a fish out of water.
“There was a Special Forces Ranger, a US Navy Recon (specialist), and a Navy SEAL; so I was up against the guys from the elite military branches, and I’m just an MMA guy with no specific training other than fighting,” said Schoenauer.
“No background on ropes, no background on shooting weapons or anything like that, (but) I didn’t feel out of place because I knew I could compete with these guys and do better than these guys. I felt comfortable. I do this every day, challenging myself, throw me in against the top of the top and I’ll beat most of them.”
While he hasn’t fought since 2009, Schoenauer has kept busy in the entertainment field, working on a myriad of high-profile projects.
“I got my SAG (Screen Actors Guild) card, and I’ve been trying to do stunts,” he said. “I’ve been training, but if I get called for a movie, I jump on that because it’s more secure and pays better.
“This last year I’ve been pretty much doing movies. I did an episode of CSI: Miami, an episode of a TV show called Nine Lives, was in The Fast and Furious Five, and just got back from New Orleans doing a film called Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.”
While his focus has been on entertainment of late, don’t think Schoenauer is ready to leave MMA just yet.
“I’m still training,” he said. “I’m working Stephan (Bonnar) at Steve Cantwell’s and I’ve been having good camps with Sergio Penha and One Kick Nick.
“My fighting is way better than when I was fighting (before). I’m looking for a fight, myself, and hopefully I’ll get in there and be fighting again soon.”
Until then, fans can check out Schoenaeur’s episode of One Man Army, debuting on the Discovery Channel, Wednesday night, July 27, at 10 p.m. Eastern/Pacific.