Shane Carwin: A Puncher by chancePosted on July 2, 2010, 09:52 PM by Joey Santosus
Shane Carwin is indeed a sight to behold. Standing 6 feet 2 inches tall, muscle from head to toe, the man defines intimidation. Inside the cage he is both fearsome and unrelenting. However, take the same man out of the cage and you will see another creature entirely. A kind, gentle man, who heeded the age old advice when taking the plunge into MMA, "Don't quit your day job!"
Throughout his MMA career, Carwin has done what many would deem impossible. While fighting among the upper echelon of one of the most demanding of all sports, he has still managed to keep a full-time engineering position. Some may consider this a conflict of interest, however Shane is not one of them. Instead he actually accredits a big part of his success to the dual-roles.
"Engineering is a cerebral job, and it is beneficial for me," he says. "It allows me time away from fighting. I get to relax with normal people so I am not constantly thinking about it. I think some guys get burnt out thinking about fighting all the time."
Such a demanding life-style speaks volumes about Carwin's passion and work-ethic, but as they say, "Behind every great man, there is a great women." One of three boys, Shane was raised in Greeley, Colorado in a house hold headed up by a single mother. Its was his mother's goal to see to it that all her sons had a fair opportunity at a college education.
Seizing his opportunity, Carwin earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Colorado School of Mines and a BS in Enviromental Technology from Western State. His collegiate success was not just limited to academics however, becoming a two-time NCAA Division II wrestling heavyweight national runner-up in 1996-97 and the NCAA Division II wrestling heavyweight national Champion in 1999. He also had note-worthy success in football as a two-time All-America for Western State.
Shane Carwin now holds the UFC interim title, quite a feat considering his journey to the top only began just a short three years ago. It was his involvement in helping others hone their wrestling skills that would ultimately lead him to MMA.
"I just got hooked, I don't know if it was the sport or the competition, but that is how it started," he explained.
It started indeed, with eight consecutive professional victories from 2005-07, all ending in the first round. With such an inconceivable track-record, it didn't take long before the who's who of MMA began taking notice.
Carwin made his UFC debut on May 24, 2008, appearing on the under-card of UFC 84 against Christian Wellisch. The match would quickly become a :44 second demonstration of the iron-fisted heavyweight's punching power, as he knocked out Wellisch in convincing fashion and added to his collection of first round victories. In fact, Carwin has added three more opening round victories since, defeating Neil Wain, Gabriel Ganzaga, and Frank Mir and all by knockout, bringing his professional record to an impressive 12-0.
Currently training at a Greg Jackson affiliate gym in Denver, Colorado with head trainer Trevor Wittman, Shane acknowldges that he is the man who steps in the cage, but humbley declines the opportunity to take all the credit, rather insisting that what you see on fight night is just the finished product of a team effort.
"You're only as good as your team in this sport," he says. "While MMA is an individual sport, you need a team and I have a solid group of guys who are here every day. At Grudge, we train to be the best. It's credit to them that they have turned me into what you see before you today."
As revered as his professional career has been thus far, it has all lead up to what could be the defining night of his career. On Saturday, July 3rd at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Carwin has been assigned the monumental task of heading up the UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar's welcome back party. The two were originally scheduled to meet in the octagon on November 21, 2009, before Shane had laid claim to the interim title, however Lesnar was forced to pull out of the fight due to a severe case of diverticulitis.
"The interim title doesn't mean anything to me," Carwin explained. "It is an amazing trophy, but the only prize that should matter to any heavyweight in the UFC is the one Brock has. I understood the reason behind the interim belt, but now we all know Brock is back and healthy, so he is the target."
Make no mistake, Brock is one of the few men that match Carwin's enormous physical attributes. Both men exceed 6 feet in height, both men cut weight in order to make the 265 pound division weight limit and both men remain extremely athletic and agile in their stature. With all things considered, the match up will indeed be Shane's biggest test to date and in more ways than one.
Quotes HT: Ultimate MMA Magazine