Former Vol football player Ovince Saint Preux started his MMA career at the bottom. "When Vince started training with me, we trained in my garage. We trained in a 10 foot by 10 foot area. No air conditioning. No heat. The roof leaked, it was terrible. So now we have 11,000 square feet. We have lots of mats. We have lots of fighters," says his head coach Eric Turner.
After giving up football following college Saint Preux moved on to mixed martial arts. He initially entered the sport as a way to stay in shape. He eventually turned pro and has worked his way up over the past decade to a 13th world ranking. He has a big fight on the next UFC event coming up that could help launch his career. "This fight puts in the Top 10 and starts putting him in Title contention. People start mentioning maybe getting a shot at the belt. So that's huge. Being the best in the world is what Vince has wanted from Day 1," Turner says.
Expect Ovince to be prepared for his upcoming fight with Canadian Ryan Jimmo. Saint Preux has good film study habits thanks to his days wearing the Orange and White. "Just film watching. Watching my guys. Seeing certian habits they got. My coach Eric Turner is really good at breaking down film and stuff. And seeing where his weak point is at," states Saint Preux.
Eric Turner is Saint Preux's head coach now, and he credits a familiar name to Vol fans for helping making Ovince more coachable. "Vince's background in sports, wrestling and football has helped enormously. So I tip my hat to Phillip Fulmer for that."