Soon it will be time to pour a bit of our 40oz out for our “TUF on SpikeTV” homie who’s no longer with us. But before then we still have one more season of the beloved (and crisp and new, I swear it) reality show to go through, which begins on September 21. Who’s on tap as cast members? Who will be the last person to urinate on a pillow on SpikeTV or ejaculate in someone’s food? I don’t know anything about that; however, I do have the list of names, which SpikeTV just circulated via press release. There are quite a few kids I don’t know there, but there are some I do – little scrappers who kicked ass before my very eyes. Here, then, are those guys, plus a little insight into them.
-Louis Gaudinot – Green hair, precise and dynamic striking, dangerous submissions and a ROC championship belt. TSMMA bantamweight Gaudinot possesses all these things, and over the years I’ve seen him nail a jumping guillotine on wrestler Jesse Riggleman, knock out hard-hitter Tuan Pham, and nearly decapitate an amateur named Billy Magliane with a spinning backfist (that one resulted in a KO). I was there at the TUF tryouts for this season, and when Gaudinot was hitting the pads with cocky spinning back-kicks and whatnot, Dana White grinned and bellowed “Okay, that’s enough Louis” like he knew the kid was just showing off.
-Dennis Bermudez – Although he’s fought mostly inPennsylvania, Bermudez did grace us with his presence at an installment of the M-1 Global: “Selection” tournament inAtlantic City. With strong wrestling and sub defense, he took on Kevin Roddy and dodged everything Roddy – a lifelong submission guy – threw at him to earn a decision. Also, his mom sat next to me in press row; she seemed nice.
-Dustin Pague – Skilled with his hands and skilled when it comes to grappling, Pague earned himself a nice, shiny ROC belt when he knocked out Steve DeAngelis earlier this year. Of course, it helps that he’s tall for his weight class and his arms stretch like Mr. Fantastic’s of Fantastic Four fame, but DeAngelis nailed him square in the schnozz (and might’ve broken it – I forget) and he still kept coming, so Pague is definitely tough.
-Jimmie Rivera – Like Gaudinot, Rivera is a TSMMA rep with a wealth of skills to call upon in the cage, although he tends to wrestle a bit more than his brethren. I’ve seen him completely shut down jiu-jitsu specialists (he even KO’d one of them), and when his sharp boxing doesn’t open opponents up for takedowns, he’s been known to go the distance fighting hard to the final bell (a trait that helped him secure a KOTC belt).
-Bonus info: Also on the cast list are brothers BJ and Josh Ferguson, who inexplicably (or maybe very explicably, I dunno) wore rashguards with tuxedos printed on them at the tryouts; John Dodson, who was such a beast Dana White had to shoot him with a tranquilizer gun to get him to stop grappling (not really); and well-known American Top Team badass Micah Miller, who has the death sentence on twelve systems (“I’ll be careful.” “You’ll be dead!” *Cue lightsaber sound*).