Ep. #26 – Cole Williams

Cole Williams is a mixed martial artist who competes in the welterweight division of the UFC. The Iowa native has picked up 11 career wins and is hoping to compete overseas in his upcoming bouts.


Cole Williams: Yeah house house house training bin well Wisconsin’s been shut down for a bit, so is Illinois in Iowa so anywhere I could possibly go and train, so it’s pretty much just doing it old old school. You know a lot of body weights a lot of running and doing whatever, whatever I can to to stay in shape and keep getting ready for. For my next fight yeah, we do a point company. We do a lot of business there in the Midwest with the Jill’s, I guess – and everything there is shot down yeah. It’S been pretty quiet, I’m up in Nova Scotia in Canada. So okay we’re pretty much on lockdown. We just opened up now parks, so we can go out and like running parks, but it’s gon na be a while before we can do jujitsu or anything fun like that, so it’s gon na be a little while yeah. Unfortunately, good training regimen set up before all everything was going down and you know getting ready for my matchup against Phil bro and obviously got postponed, / cancelled. And then I’m calling me up for for another one but haven’t haven’t been able do really anything that you know I don’t can’t go to the gym can’t hold mitts. Can spar can’t can’t do any of that stuff right now? So it’s it’s definitely nice to have some events going on, like as a UFC Fan as a sports fan in general. It’S finally nice a little bit of hope. I guess with the world to see it going on. What are your thoughts on the UFC? Putting putting these cards together you’re getting something done. I think it’s good. I really do it a lot of people, how’s messaging, leading up to the event this past Saturday and it was a stacked card. It really was, I think they got another another fight tonight and another one coming up on Saturday. So it’s good because it gives us something to look forward to setting aside like me, actually fighting I’m fan of it, so I’m always that guy buying a pay-per-view. You know having somebody’s over to watch this event or that event, so I mean set aside the competitive side me. I just love watching the sport itself, so it a little bit of taste of know. You know what I mean, so it’s nice to get look forward to some event on a Saturday night watch the fights you know chat with your buddies, so it was, it was pretty cool um. It was funny too because it was a closed event. Obviously so, there’s no fan stuff like that. I did that I used to fight for another promotion and we had a reality show and same concept. It was quiet, you know, there’s no fans, nothing, they were just filming for the show. So I I would much rather have fans, but it’s nice at least have something going on. Do you as someone who’s competed, I guess in an empty arena, do you notice that, obviously you notice the difference when you’re walking out and during the intermission or the breaks, but do you notice it while you’re fighting or is that all zoned out anyway, I’m Izone Out a lot, but so you really don’t hear the crowd and I barely hear the coaches. You know calling out directions and stuff, but it is significantly different not having all that commotion going on in the background, and it’s just silence, you know – and you hear a person talking to this one person here – it’s it’s not all mushed together when you have fans And it’s such a loud environment, so yeah, you definitely notice it. It’S a lot more motivating when there is you know there are fans and this in the stadium and and everything but yeah, it’s a huge helping to Debbie. Tell that there’s no cheering going on yeah. You were like you mentioned. You were scheduled to fight Phillip row a little while ago. Obviously, things fell through with the pandemic and everything you mentioned you were able to Train is. Is there a timeline you’re looking at or is it just gon na be depending on as soon as things open up you’ll get back in your training and go from there or is it something like if you got a call tomorrow, you’d be you’d, be on a Plane the day after well, it’s it’s one thing, there’s a lot that goes into it. Like Mia, I cut a decent amount of weight. You know I usually walk around I’d, say anywhere from 195 to 215, depending on what I’m what’s the type of training, if I’m doing more powerlifting more protein or if I need to focus more on speed and things like that, you know so. Duffy fluctuates. You know. So when I did, the short notice call for my first fight and I just want to make sure that I have a good good opportunity put in the right type of camp. You know, and once you know, setting aside the fights once our gym can actually open up. You know we have to follow the you know. Each state has followed the regulations and stuff whatever they they’re gon na do well, once those are cleared up just get back in there and be active in the gym all the time, and that way, if I do get a short notice call or something it’s it’s Just another day you know I just be ready on a regular basis, so is Phil Crowe still the still the name you want, or does it really actually exchange be messages through Facebook? Mutual respect is they’re, both kind of wishing each other’s best. While we’re going through this but yeah, we both totally tell you that we’re gon na you know that we are who we want to fight. We want to fight each other and just out of good mutual respect and we’ll grab a beer afterwards and celebrate so so yeah. That’S definitely whoo-hoo I’m lying to fight. You know I I like the matchup, it’s a unique challenge, so I’m looking forward to that matchup. So that’s that’s what I’m training for, but you know they once things kind of pass over a little bit and they throw a different name. My way, I that’s that’s fine, you know I I just want to get in there and and start competing and I’m getting antsy sitting around. You know yeah you’re, almost ten months out now I think right, 990s yeah and once yeah it’s it’s just kind of the way worked out. Um had my first fight, which was like a ten days notice and then for my normal work. The holidays are the busy time you know so. Once the holidays past I started to get on a pretty good routine, getting ready for my fight against Philip. So it’s been a bit but I’m patient, but I think I’m extra antsy because of everything going on in the world right now. Do you uh have any injuries or anything like that from your last fight that you that you uh healed up during the time off or no honestly, I really don’t run across an injury and in the fight. I don’t think I’ve ever left a fight being actually injured. You know, I have you, know a sore back or knees or tender stuff like that, but nothing that would prevent me from actually accepting another fight. I watched I was before this. I watched your interview with MMA futures from back in 2016, so it was like three and a half years ago. Don’T even know, if you remember that, and you said your goal was to reach the UFC, so you’ve done that you’ve accomplished your goal from three years ago. What’S the goal now well, I said from day one Iona: I want to fight with the FC that that was always the goal, but to kind of clarify, I don’t feel like I’ve arrived until I get in there and get my hands raised. You know what I mean I mean I don’t want to just be that guy. That goes in lose a couple and I’m not gon na run around call myself. You see that if I don’t, if I don’t get it in there and I’m not competitive and and win some fights, so yeah honestly just keep taking it a fight at a time. That’S how I’ve been through my whole career. I just focus on whatever the next challenge is in front of me and not look. You know five years, ten years down the road, I’m 30. 36. So I’m honest he’s looking to just keep lining up as many fights for them that I can and see. Where see where add in couple years, you know so what was the so I’m assuming that was kind of a thought process behind taking that short notice fight like if I take it on short notice, I’m in the UFC, regardless of whether I win lose. What what sort of things went through your mind when you accepted that that fight on short notice did you ever consider? You know what it’s too, too short notice I’ll wait it out? No, no! They call I’m gon na I’m gon na answer. I mean I’ve been waiting for that call for 10, 11 years 12 years. However long I’ve been fighting, so I always knew they’d call. I’M saying yes, that’s that’s it’s about time. You know. Maybe it’s: oh, you know five five years too late, but would have liked it in my younger days but yeah I was, I was always gung-ho. I was gon na. Take that fight, no matter who was against or anything like that and then the the opponent I mean he’s five, no in the UFC Claudia Silva um. I still felt that I I could you know I could beat him. You know I was a huge underdog, but I felt sigh listicle II wear my wrestling. You know, I know my wrestling background can come into play. My striking is you know tremendously better than where I started. I prefer to stand up now, so I just felt like it was actually a pretty good matchup to for my first fight. You know go in there, be it a guy, that’s at the time for no pull up the upset and and keep going on so, but as far as the thought of not accepting it that wasn’t even option. You know I as soon as my manager hit me up, and I said yes, let’s do it – my folks had to focus on on the weight cut. That was the biggest challenge for me. Honestly, I had a job, forty five pounds or so and that 10 day notice, but I yeah I called my boss – say I need a week off, don’t ask questions, I need it off. Trust me yeah. So you you’re 11 and two now and you’re. Only two losses are against UFC former or current UFC fighters. Uh Eric wisely and, like you said, claudio silva, which the eric wisely one dates back like eleven years. So you went like solid ten years without without a loss. Oh yeah, you put together quite quite a bit of momentum there. What do you look to implement? I guess in your next next fight that you didn’t get going against Claudio to help build that momentum back up. I think just overall, I’m gon na be a lot more prepared. You know I mean at that time. I already had a break away from from this board and was getting pulled in different directions. You know I I have a son and I got a family to support, so I’m not fighting I’m not making a paycheck. So I got ta put my effort in my my career and I wasn’t training at that time when I got offered the fight. So it’s not really a matter of do something different. It’S just I’m gon na be prepared. It’S it’s as simple as that, if I’m prepared and at my and my best ability, I I’m very, very difficult to beat – and you know between my wrestling, my my ground game, submission defense. Might my striking and just my overall understanding of the game. I know how far I can take it. So as long as I’m prepared leading up to the fight, even 80 % it’ll be very difficult night for the majority people I fight you were on, you were on fight master, correct mm-hmm. What was what was that experience? Like it was, it was pretty cool um. I think I went in that show. I was six in one and to find out some of the legends of the game. You know Randy Couture, Frank, Shamrock, Greg Jackson, who’s, also a phenomenal coach, Joe Warren um, just knowing the coaches that were gon na be bald uh. I was excited for that opportunity and I felt like it was. You know I was only competing at kind of small regional shows, even though I had wins over. You see that’s at that point, but it’s still not at a larger stage. So I felt like it’s my chance to go out there and just see see how I am. You know against some some very competitive guys, and you know they had like Joe Riggs. They had several other guys Nick Barnes there’s a a lot of a lot of talent, a lot of unknown names, a lot of names, I’ve been in Bellator or I’ve seen Joe Briggs was, was one of the bigger names on the show and just go out there And compete against some of the better guys in the world and by the time was all said and done. I think the biggest thing I took away from it was: it was a confidence booster. You know I learned a lot and I felt like I walked away from this show better and knowing I can really make this. You know this dream might happen. I can take it to the high stage and compete with them as well. Do you remain in contact with some of those coaches, yeah yeah? I do a lot a lot of the guys I wouldn’t be when we first left the show we end up creating a Facebook group of just the 16 competitors and we’ve. You know we’ve chatted from time to time. You know I do keep him to contact with Randy and just you know, maybe every other month or a couple times a week. It’S sporadic based on each other’s schedules, but pretty much the main guys. I keep in contact with are the guys that are on my team. You know Mike Brown’s oulous and even even guys, like Nick Barnes, who was one of the guys that competed against it’s. You know we definitely do keep in contact. I love that show with teammates and friends. A lot of you mentioned that you’re UFC Fan a lot of fighters. Don’T watch fights they’re, just like out whatever like Nate Diaz is a great example. Did you watch the the card this past weekend? Oh yeah, what we were your thoughts on that that main event Wow Katie, he showed up it. He put together one heck of a performance, you know just the biggest thing and the adjustments he made early on. He was a wild guy. You know he was swinging and going and going and he put himself out of position. He put himself in dangerous spots to get counter struck and just wasn’t wasn’t being as strategic as she should be, and you know that fight. He showed a lot of patience. He didn’t rush in to finish a guy finished oniy when he had him hurt several times. He played a very smart game and all of his tools really came together for that one, and I saw it, it also didn’t seem, like Tony showed up high paced high pressure and having power behind his punches. He made a post word like three weeks ago, where he made wait for the flight, because that was the original date. I think that might have. It might have hurt a little a little bit. You know when you, when you’re training, for a fight and going through that weight cut, that takes a toll on your body and you’ve got a rebound from it. You know so I’ve done that before, especially through my wrestling of making those back to back lands and when it’s such a big cut, I don’t know what he walks around at, but um NATO’s back to back cuts. You lose a little bit of steam. You lose a little bit of power because your your weights fluctuating you know, so I personally felt that when I’ve made weigh-ins – but you know so close together, you know I I lose a little bit of a little bit of power and a little bit of esteem. So I don’t know if that impacted him or not, but it was just one of the things I thought of when, when he was posting that he made the weight and how he showed up. This makes me wonder if that impacted a little bit. You know yeah absolutely like I I assumed once I got the round three I thought Tony was gon na take over. It was like gage he’s gon na gasp he’s done in the past, but he was calm composed and Tony just didn’t seem to define his game and it was a was unusual, but I was I was I’m a huge Goethe fan so happy, but at the same Time felt for Tony, because I didn’t think he needed to take the fight yeah yeah. He doesn’t turn fights down how he shows up in there. It’S hard not to walk, enjoy watching him fight, but with how how patient gage he was. He wasn’t. He didn’t need to go that hard and blow so much Dean. You know in the early rounds he was winning the rounds and doing damage and wasn’t exerting himself a question. You know a lot so yeah. It was a smart, smart fight by him and, what’s your what’s your prediction for the gay chica Beebe fight, which I’m assuming is gon na happen unless Connor sneaks up and snatches it? Where does that? Doesn’T he it’s hard not to you know, cuz gate? She was so current in our minds and because you just bought and how well he showed up um. I honestly don’t know, because I can see to be taking him down and and doing what he does against everybody else. So I don’t know honestly. Normally I have a pic if I was gon na pick. Somebody right now, Robbie sake kebede, you know, that’s not who I want to win or I’m yeah, it’s a coin toss for me right now. I don’t know who’s gon na win, that fight, alright and and lastly, uh I’m a fight island. Is that something that you’d be like all all on board for like I need out of? Yes, that would be pretty cool to go to uh wherever it’s at. If it’s, if it’s truly in the works or a done deal, you know all the speculation going on yeah sign me up. All you know that’d be fun. I I’ve always wanted to go overseas as well, and I haven’t had the chance yet so I’m trying to use opportunity. I have to also go abroad and you know, go go somewhere. I normally wouldn’t just fly over too so yeah may as well see the world travel gain some experience and learn, learn about new cultures. Well! Well: yeah yeah! I’M a people watcher! I, like I like going to places and looking at people and admiring the history or you know the structures, whatever it is so yeah. I would love to go over there, my top two places to go to which it’s not realistic for the fighting. You know I want to go to Cairo, Egypt, I’m a history, buff and Germany. Those are two places I’d like to go, but really any book anywhere overseas, something other than the Midwest would be cool, yeah. Germany’S uh, Germany’s amazing and and the UFC does go there. So that’s that’s a possibility he just Egypt may not be, but Germany could be hey and last question non MMA related, so you’ve wrestled, you’ve had to cut weight, rustling you’ve had to cut weight for fighting. Is there one food that’s impossible to cut out of your diet? I see pops, I see pops, I see pops yeah, they don’t put on a lot a lot of weight on me and you know it’s kind of one of my late nights like late night snacks. If I’m, you know little thirsty or a little hungry I’ll, just grab one of my icy pops and and have a popsicle or something so that that’s the one dying I’ve always had through high school college MMA, it’s the one thing I I live by myself too, But I don’t cut it out all right man. Well, thank you hopefully yeah. Hopefully, you can get back into training soon and hopefully we’ll see you fight, maybe in on fight Island, if not Kazakhstan, if not Egypt, wherever, hopefully you get a fight abroad and looking forward to seeing you back in there, I appreciate it man. Thank you for your time. Yep all right, man,

Sergio Pineiro

Sergio Pineiro is the Founder of FighterPath.com and host of the Quarantinecast podcast. Based in Canada he is both a sports journalist and MMA enthusiast. He practices the sport but has a passion for the individual stories of training, fighting and living the fighting lifestyle.

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