The UFC world has its fair share of controversial figures, and few can claim to court controversy quite like Colby Covington. Known as much for his sharp tongue outside the cage as his skills inside it, Covington is a divisive figure in the MMA community. For fans and critics alike, here are five lesser-known facts about Colby “Chaos” Covington you might find surprising.
Before making a splash in the UFC, Covington was tearing up the collegiate wrestling scene. He wrestled for Iowa Central Community College and won the NJCAA national championship. Post this achievement, he transferred to Oregon State University, where he became a two-time Pac-10 Conference champion and earned All-American honors in his senior year. His strong wrestling foundation is evident in his fights, where his grappling and control are second to none.
Friendship with Jorge Masvidal
One of the most publicized rivalries in recent UFC history is between Covington and Jorge Masvidal. What many don’t know is that these two were once close friends and training partners. They lived together, trained together, and supported each other early in their careers. The MMA game is a fickle one, and the relationship soured over time, but it’s fascinating to see how quickly alliances can change in the fight world.
Broke a UFC Record
In 2018, during UFC Fight Night 119, Covington broke the UFC record for the most significant strikes attempted in a welterweight fight. He attempted a whopping 541 strikes against Demian Maia, showcasing his relentless pace and pressure. It’s this very aggression that has brought him numerous victories in the octagon.
Covington’s “Make America Great Again” (MAGA) persona, a nod to former U.S. President Donald Trump’s slogan, is a key part of his identity in the UFC. While it’s clear that he’s a supporter of Trump (he’s even met the former president and has been to the White House), there’s debate about how much of this is genuine belief versus a promotional tactic to get more eyeballs on his fights. Regardless of the motivation, it’s certainly got people talking.
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Behind the brash persona and trash talk, Covington has a philanthropic side that often goes unnoticed. He’s made contributions to various causes, including helping out military veterans. After one of his big fights, he even donated a portion of his fight purse to the causes which support veterans. It’s a reminder that fighters, like all of us, are multi-dimensional beings with layers that often go unseen by the public.
Whether you’re cheering for him or against him during his bouts, Colby Covington is undeniably one of the most intriguing figures in the UFC today. These lesser-known tidbits about his life and career only add layers to an already complex individual, and it’s exciting to think about what the future holds for “Chaos.”