Early last year after the first couple episodes of TUF 7 aired, I wrote a piece on how impressed I was with the way Rampage approached his role as a coach. He seemed genuinely interested in getting to know the members of his team and helping them to succeed. As the season went on, I recall there were a few moments that made me question if I had spoken too soon, and considering his team lost nearly every bout, he didn’t turn out to be as good at coaching as I had hoped. Nevertheless, he still left me with the impression that he cared about his guys, which to me outweighed his performance as a coach.
Fast forward to season 10 and Rampage is once again leading a team on The Ultimate Fighter, yet he appears to be nothing like he was in his first stint. He’s still laid back and cracking jokes, but as highlighted in last night’s epsiode, he doesn’t seem to give a damn about anyone on his team with maybe the exception of Kimbo Slice.
Of course, it could always be slick editing on Spike’s part to paint Rampage as someone who doesn’t care enough to offer his team pre-fight and post-fight support, however, several cast members’ latest blog posts suggest otherwise.
I didn’t know that Demico’s coaches were out eating, while Demico was sitting down cold and wondering where his coaches were at. Not having anybody to wrap his hands. I don’t understand why one of his teammates did not step up and help him warm up and wrap his hands. It was very immature of the coaches to do that. You do not leave a fighter alone before his fight… I felt as if Rampage was more upset at the fact that he had another loss under his belt, but in reality, he should be more upset at himself for leaving his fighter alone. Demico did well considering his lack of experience. If anything, Demico should be upset at Rampage for being late. People don’t understand how something like that can affect a fighter’s mentally.
It’s hard to believe Rampage acted that way after the fight and didn’t want to give D a stool or even go in to the cage afterward. Well, I mean I guess I can, he left before my fight was even over. In fact now that I think about it, he wouldn’t even speak to me for a day or two after. I think Rashad did a very accurate job of describing the feelings after a loss and he was dead on. You do feel really low and I do think that a good coach will be there for you to help you through it.
I consider Rampage among my friends and in general I think he’s a decent guy. But at this point, it was feeling to me like his heart really wasn’t into being a coach; almost like he was just waiting out the clock. Maybe that wasn’t the case, but it was definitely my perception.
Let’s start of with the obvious, the coaches rallying around Kimbo after he lost. This is the first time any of Team Rampage’s coaches and even Quinton “Rampage” Jackson showed any concern for someone who lost. Rampage has Kimbo Slice’s [expletive] in his mouth and so does Tiki Ghosn. When Rampage told Tiki they would still focus on Kimbo just in case someone got hurt, it was clear to me that it was all about Kimbo and no one else on our team.
The coaches decided to go to lunch after we had our practice. Okay, it was two hours before the fight. I mean, go grab a sub or some fast food but don’t go to a sitdown restaurant. It showed that they weren’t thinking about Demico or his fight…It just showed where Rampage’s head was.
Then after the fight, they just left Demico in the cage by himself…It was ridiculous and showed Rampage has basically given up on his team. The coaches went to have a meeting and came back to the locker room.
That’s when Rampage told Demico he gave up in the cage. You never say that to a fighter when his dream at being The Ultimate Fighter was just taken away. What kind of coaching style is that? Also the last thing Rampage said was that he had to go and read a part of the book he was carrying around for his acting class. I have an idea, why don’t you start acting like a [expletive] coach!
Rampage’s heart is somewhere — maybe in acting — but at least from what we’ve seen so far it wasn’t in coaching season 10 of The Ultimate Fighter.