Randy Villarreal + MMA = Up and Coming Force to be Reckoned With
“It’s my best performance yet,” exclaims Randy Villarreal, as he describes his latest conquest in the world of pro MMA. A decisive victory over Willie Munoz at STFC 12 came via submission, a guillotine choke, in the 2nd round of the fight. The San Antonio Native, now living in Dallas, has improved his record to 3-1 in his professional career. With his latest victory, and ever growing confidence, Randy looks to build upon the foundation of his winning record.
Randy is a blue belt that trains and competes in “the gentle art” under the tutelage of Tony Tipton and Albert Hughes at Genesis Jiu Jitsu in River Oaks, TX. Although his most recent fight against brown belt Munoz was potentially his toughest challenge to date, Randy looks forward to what may be an even deadlier opponent in black belt Chris Holdsworth. “I don’t want to take any shortcuts, I want the toughest fights, and I want to prove that I deserve to be in the big shows.”
I caught up with Randy at Texas Fighting Syndicate MMA (TFS) in Burleson, TX. where he plays the role of head MMA instructor. To shed some light on the driving factors to his early success, I sat down to interview the up and coming force to be reckoned with.
OTM: So Randy, How did you get started in MMA?
Randy: Well I got interested watching UFC events with my brother Jason. When he decided to join a BJJ school in San Antonio I went with him. Six months later we moved to Dallas and I found a MMA gym, it didn’t take me too long to figure out I wanted to fight.
OTM: When did you realize that you could fight for a living?
Randy: I always knew I could do it, I was an athlete in high school, and once I started training it just felt natural.
OTM: Haha! Another Randy the natural!
Randy: (laughs) Maybe one day.
OTM: Ok. So what does a typical day of training consist of?
Randy: In the mornings I do Jiu Jitsu, and in the evenings I do Boxing or Muay Thai. Also I lift weights a few times a week. I always train twice a day, whether I have a fight coming up or not, I always train like I have a fight. In between it all I teach at TFS
OTM: Wow that sounds like a pretty heavy workload.
Randy: Yeah, I take Sunday off to rest, but Monday morning its back to business.
OTM: Did you make any adjustments to your training regimen or camp in preparation for Munoz?
Randy: Well it’s kind of hard to make adjustments for a fight on three days notice.
OTM: Very true. So you pretty much just watched some footage and left the rest up to instinct?
Randy: Yeah, but I’m used to taking fights on short notice so I didn’t mind.
OTM: What was your biggest concern going in to that fight? Was it the fact that Munoz was a more seasoned grappler?
Randy: Not to sound cocky, but I wasn’t concerned at all. I could fight tomorrow if I have to, I’m always ready.
OTM: At what point did you realize that the fight was yours?
Randy: Once I sunk in the guillotine, that’s when I knew it was over. I landed some kicks in the 1st that softened him up, but I thought the fight was going to go on a lot longer.
OTM: So you would say Willie Munoz is a tough competitor?
Randy: Yeah I would say so, he took a head kick in the 1st and kept going. Honestly, that’s why I took this fight; I knew it would be a battle that the audience would love. It’s my best performance yet.
OTM: Now in your next fight you’ll be taking on a black belt by the name of Chris Holdsworth, have you seen any of his fights?
Randy: Yeah, I’ve been studying tape. He is good, but I think I have the right game plan for him.
OTM: Is there anything in his repertoire that could give you any foreseeable problems?
Randy: I wouldn’t necessarily say I could see problems. I know where his strength lies, and if I play it smart, I’ll be fine.
OTM: How do you think the two of you match up stylistically?
Randy: It’s perfect, He is a Jiu Jitsu fighter and I’m an MMA fighter. There is only one way he can finish the fight, and there are multiple ways for me to end his night.
OTM: Yes I can see what you mean, and the fact that you made your answer rhyme convinces me even more.
OTM: Now in all seriousness, here is the real question, how do you see the fight finishing?
Randy: With my hand being raised in victory.
OTM: No prediction on it being a knockout or submission?
Randy: I feel like calling my fight will limit my game, I just visualize the win.
OTM: Well with an impressive win like that you’ll definitely be turning some heads in the MMA World.
Randy: I hope so, I spent a good amount of time as an amateur, and I feel like I paid my dues to the sport. I don’t want to take any shortcuts, I want the toughest fights, and I want to prove that I deserve to be in the big shows.
OTM: Well said, so what does the future hold for your career?
Randy: As far as short-term goals go, hopefully with a few more wins I’ll get to fight in the WEC. Another one (goal) is to become a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu World Champion. For the long run, I would like to see my students succeed and to earn my black belt.
OTM: Well I think you’ve already proven that those goals are more than attainable. Good luck with your fight this Saturday, and thanks for the interview.
Randy: Thanks, any time.
Article & Interview by: Manoj “Vamanoj” Mathew
Randy Villarreal is currently looking for sponsors anyone interested can contact his manager Jason Villarreal (214)532-4252