We all live during a time when sports are becoming more popular than ever before. In a world of fast paced living and complete dependence upon mobile devices, the ways in which viewers and fans obtain avenues to watch their favorite sporting events has become easier and easier. For the UFC, they’ve let their matchmakers control the organizations destiny by creating exciting fight cards and PPV events that fans feel compelled to purchase for a night of entertainment. Now, the UFC is full of exciting fighters on the roster that will deliver on an action-packed fight. But there is one fighter in particular that comes to mind who literally tops all of the others. A fighter who is active in two weight classes and has the UFC record for earning the most post-fight bonuses ever. It just so happens that this fighter also considers himself a Cowboy outside of the octagon. His name is Donald Cerrone.
Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone was born on March 29th, 1983 in the capitol of Ohio. Having not spent much time in Columbus, Cowboy moved further west with his parents and planted roots in Denver, Colorado. Cowboy was known as a ‘wild’ child much as he is as an adult and would get into numerous fights during his childhood. Whether it was due to being diagnosed with that nagging term – ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) or not, only Cowboy can answer that. As a teenager, Donald attended the Air Academy High School which was home to public school students built on the foundation of a Military Academy. It is the only one of it’s kind in the nation. During Cowboy’s high school tenure, he developed an interest in riding bulls as a hobby at first, but he would later do it professionally. Later in his life, Cowboy would use his experience riding bulls as a young man to compete for charity events. Let’s just take a moment to absorb what you just read. If you know anyone who decided to get into bull riding as a hobby or even professionally, you’re aware of this life threatening sport and now can appreciate Cowboy’s mindset today. On top of bull riding, Cowboy did begin training in Kick Boxing and Taekwondo during his Sophomore year of high school. That lasted until he began his true MMA training at a gym in Commerce City, Colorado by the name of ‘Freedom Fighters’ Those two early martial art forms would be the foundation for Cowboys spectacular career today inside of the UFC.
Wild man Donald Cerrone lives his life fearlessly inside and out of the Octagon. He’s an avid outdoorsman who literally dabbles in everything from wake boarding, scuba diving, rock climbing, hiking, base jumping and shooting guns. The list goes on and chances are, if you can think of something to do outside the comfort of your living room, Cowboy has been there and done that. He’s also had a long list of injuries to go with his memorable moments. One in particular devastating injury came when Cowboy was riding his ATV and tried to land a 60 foot jump. As crazy as this sounds – he was literally disemboweled by his own handlebars and needed immediate surgery. Behind that chiseled stomach that we see in the UFC on fight night, Cowboy lost a section of his intestines AND stomach from the injury. Gruesome.
Another tale of the tape from Cerrone’s near death experiences involves a simple hiking trip with a group of friends in Alburquerque, New Mexico. Cowboy would lead the small group to the base of a desert mountain where Cowboy actually fell 40 feet backwards to the ground. To this day, he will blame himself for feeling over confident and not setting up enough safety lines to prevent such a devastating fall. Cowboy suffered a fractured hip and foot during this routine adventure. If anyone is trying to cash in on their nine lives, Cowboy appears to be trying.
If we’ve learned anything from Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone, it’s that he lives his life to the fullest and doesn’t take anything for granted. Cowboy is one of the most active fighters on the UFC’s roster to date and on average, fights 4 times per year. He’s openly stated that rather than focusing on a championship title belt, he’s here to make money so he can support his extra-curricular activities.
On a financial side of Cowboy’s career, he is one of the few fighters with big time sponsorship. Cerrone currently has Monster Energy Drinks, Harley Davidson Motor Company and even Budweiser all in his corner. Cowboy is definitely a marketable fighter and a household name that extends much further than the coasts of the Unites States.
“I took on a bunch of new hobbies, and they cost me a lot of money, so I’ve got to make some more.“ -Donald Cerrone