URIJAH FABER – ‘SUP with Urijah?

Interview: Brian & Leslie Terhorst
Photos: Leslie Terhorst

To simply call Urijah Faber an MMA fighter is much like calling Joe Frazier a boxer. There is so much more to this guy than meets the eye. Yeah, he’s the former WEC featherweight Champion of the World, yeah he’s the Alpha Male Team leader, & yeah, he’s on TV more than most politicians.

But he’s also a businessman, a mentor, a true patriot, and an icon – simply put… a very cool guy.

He has an impressive record with 32 wins, 7 losses & zero draws. The former featherweight champ (145 pounds) has dropped to the 135-pound category or ‘Bantamweight’ & at age 35… he’s in the best physical shape of his life. 

Urijah has been steadily working his way back to the top… and looking forward to the much anticipated re-match with Dominick Cruz (He’s the only man to ever beat Cruz at featherweight).

We had a chance to meet up w/ Urijah on the Bay. 

We ran alongside him while he paddled & fired questions at him till he fell in…

RIS: What’s been happening w/ you?

UF: This past year was a big year for me – I fought 5 times in 13 months. It was a pretty intense year. Losing a title shot to Barao, which was pretty unfortunate. I took that fight with three weeks notice. That was B.S. really.. but you can’t complain. You cant dwell on stuff like that.

My last fight was against that younger kid, ‘Bruce Lee Roy’, Alex Caceres. He was tough. Coming off like a five fight winning streak. Had to put some pressure on him, but in the process I got kneed during the fight in the ribs. Thus, the injured ribs now. Can’t train fully right now.

RIS: Hows the team doing now now?

UF: Team Alpha Male has been kicking butt. It’s grown into a pretty big team. I think we have 8 guys in the UFC now. That’s pretty cool. We have around 40 up-and-comers. We’ve picked up a lot more notariety with TJ Dillashaw becoming our first UFC World Champ. That’s HUGE. He’s a guy that’s come up from the very beginning of our program. 

RIS: What are you doing in San Diego?

UF: A Friend of mine is an oral surgeon. I’m gonna be helping him open up an office complex with other dental professionals. I think theres going to be six other dentists & surgeons in the building. 

RIS: You’re into a lot of different things, like the new clothing line. How’s that going?

UF: It’s going really well actually. I kinda butt heads with my partner. He’s a body builder from New York. This line was his Idea, but I get final approval on all designs so that’s cool. I just try to stay busy.  I have a manager up in L.A. He & I have been working on a lot of entertainment stuff over the years. I’ve also got the gym in Sacto. Thats going really well. It’s really cool they’ve been using the gym as a representative of Sacramento. Like the Kings and Team Alpha Male. We’re bringing recognition to the city, really having a positive effect. The gym is in the heart of mid town Sacto & we’ have a ton of general members. There’s a small town up on the Northern California coast near Fort Bragg, called Point Arena. I have an old building there that we have developed into a private retreat gym for myself & my guys. 

RIS: Let’s talk about your fighting career. What are your goals.

UF: My goal is always to be World Champion. Right now I’m number two in the world. You get in that title picture, you want to stay in there. It changes up though. Now one of my team mates, someone I’ve mentored for years holds the belt, 

RIS: Yeah, how does that work?

UF: I’ve only got a couple of years left for fighting. I’ll take who ever comes my way. So, we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it. Until then, I’m just taking all the fights coming my way, that sound fun & are good opportunities & just puttin on a great show, ya know?

RIS: Anyone in particular you want to fight?

UF: Yeah, I still want that fight with Dominic Cruz. I think everybody wants to see that fight. Also, a rematch with Tom Barro would be interesting. I don’t think that fight did either one of us justice w/ the early stoppage. 

Yeah, People want to see that TJ fight… we’ll see how that goes

RIS: What do you think about Stand Up Paddle boards?

UF:  Pretty cool. Thanks guys!


BTW… Anybody think it’s funny I fell in???

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