Team Texas: James Markle

8:01 AM Moo 0 Comments


Name: James  Markle

Rank: Black

Where you train: Markle Gold Team & Bernardo Pitel BJJ

How long have you been training? Submission grappling since 1990

Favorite Gi: Fuji Suparaito

What’s in your gym bag? Lots of tape and maybe some tacos 😊

Favorite submission? Loop choke

Favorite thing about the Jiu-Jitsu community in Texas? We have some of the most open and accepting gyms in the world filled with top level competitors.

What’s one thing you would change about the Texas Jiu Jitsu community? We still have a lot of gyms not participating in community events open mats, these are amazing and I wished we had them when I was a lower belt coming up, Texas is very lucky.

What is your biggest accomplishment? Becoming the first American black belt under Jorge Macaco Patino and not dying in the process.

What has been your biggest struggle in Jiu Jitsu? Jumping into the black belt division at 38 (now 43) and going against monsters that have been black belts longer than I have been doing BJJ.

 If you could give any advice to your white belt self, what would it be?  Stop giving excuses on why you can’t make it to train, we get it.  Just show up and get on the mat when you can.

 What motivates you train on days when you just don’t feel like it? BJJ is like my mood medicine, if I miss a day I feel “fine.” Others say I am a real pain in the a#@ specifically my wife.

If you could take a private lesson with any Jiu Jitsu practitioner who would it be? I am not big on privates and have been able to train with a ton of big name guys, I am more honored to have a newbie step on the mat and take up BJJ with me.

Who is your favorite Texas BJJ Practitioner to watch (outside of your current team/affiliation):
 I love watching the kids tear it up, Mona Bailey is one of my favorites!

What’s your perfect Jiu Jitsu playlist? Old school hip-hop played at high volumes!

What do you remember about your first day of Jiu Jitsu? It was so long ago but coming from a wrestling background, most likely damn this gi is hot!

What do you remember about your first tournament? I thought I killed a guy after hitting him with a huge Uchi Mata and knew that this would be something I would be doing for a long time.

Anything exciting coming up? Training camp and prep for World Masters in August!

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Team Texas: Kevin Entrades

1:22 AM Moo 0 Comments


Name: Kevin Entrades

Rank: Yellow

Where you train: Ground Dwellers

How long have you been training? Almost 6 years. I started when I was 5yrs old. I started in Pennsylvania with Tiger Shulmanns MMA. Then I started training at 10th Planet Bethlehem before moving here to Texas and now I’m with Professor Eddie Avelar at Ground Dwellers.

Favorite Gi: Don’t really know any. I did most of my training in NoGi.

What’s in your gym bag? My Gi, my Belt, sometimes I’ll bring some medals I’ve won in tournaments to show my teammates.

Favorite submission? I have two. I like Triangles and Armbars.

Favorite thing about the Jiu Jitsu community in Texas? I like how with the kids divisions there’s a lot of sportsmanship. We can compete against each other and play and hang out afterward like we didn’t just try to choke each other out.

What’s one thing you would change about the Texas Jiu Jitsu community? 
I don’t know I guess more local super fight opportunities for kids.

What is your biggest accomplishment? I can’t just say one thing. I think just my journey itself and how far I’ve gotten and how much I’ve improved. I have so much more room to get better.

What has been your biggest struggle in Jiu Jitsu? I guess taking my training seriously. I always use to play around and not listen but now I feel my focus is better and I will get better.

If you could give any advice to your white belt self, what would it be? You're not always going to come in destroying everyone on the mats. It’s going to take time. You have to be patient. It will just click one day and you’ll see how much better you’ve gotten since you started.

What motivates you to train on days when you just don’t feel like it? My dad will push me to keep training. He trains also, so if I don't feel like not training he says we have made a commitment and we need to honor it. Obviously unless your injured then yea get better but just not feeling it doesn’t fly in my house. Lol

If you could take a private lesson with any Jiu Jitsu practitioner who would it be? Eddie Bravo

Outside of your current team/affiliation, who is your favorite Texas BJJ Practitioner to watch?
Victor Pozas from Darkside. I love how good he is at leg attack’s and that’s something I want to get good at.

What’s your perfect Jiu Jitsu playlist?
Playlists would have, Panic of the Disco, Fall out Boy , Eminem , Post Malone and Xxxtencion.

What do you remember about your first day of Jiu Jitsu? I was the biggest most annoying kid. I didn’t know what was going on so I just took it as a big joke.

What do you remember about your first tournament? I got smashed. The kid just sat on me the whole match. I wasn’t nervous I was actually kind of hyped, but I didn’t want to lose so I was mad.

Anything exciting coming up? I’ll be doing some local tournaments maybe. I know I’ll be doing Fuji and Submission only In Austin.  I will also be doing my first IBJJF Tournament on June 22nd.  I’ve never been able to do it since we can’t afford to fly to California or Las Vegas so I’m excited they’ll be in Houston.  I hope to have a super fight again sometime soon. My dream is to be invited to Onnit.

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Team Texas: Nico Echeverry

12:10 PM Moo 0 Comments


Name: Nico Echeverry

Rank: Brown Belt

Where you trainACS MMA

How long have you been training?
I've been training consistently for about 9 years now.

Favorite Gi?  I'mma be honest witchu. It's the gi I'm wearing at the time.

What’s in your gym bag?
Well, I tend to use a grocery bag for it so I guess just my no-gi clothes.

Favorite submission?
Anything that the coach warns the class with "now be careful guys. You could tear your training partner's [insert body part here]."

Favorite thing about the Jiu Jitsu community in Texas?

The fact that there are so many people from different walks of life. I love the diversity.

What’s one thing you would change about the Texas Jiu Jitsu community?

There are some egos. I get that you're confident in your game and that you're super proud of where you train and stuff, but dude chill.

What is your biggest accomplishment?

2017 Dungal Absolute Champion

What has been your biggest struggle in Jiu Jitsu?

Nothing really physical. Just lots of self-doubt and lack of confidence in the past.

If you could give any advice to your white belt self, what would it be?

"Stay out of mount dip weed.  Tire him out in side control, THEN go to mount."

What motivates you to train on days when you just don’t feel like it?

I always ask myself, "Nico, when has there been a time when you regretted going to training? None. How many times have you regretted not going to training when you could have? Every time. Now go train you pansy."

If you could take a private lesson with any Jiu Jitsu practitioner who would it be?

Keenan Cornelius

Who is your favorite Texas BJJ Practitioner to watch (outside of your current team/affiliation)

Evan Gideon, Dean Zaino, or Jason Soliz.

What’s your perfect Jiu Jitsu playlist?

Anything that has a rock and R&B feel to it. For instance The Heavy. Love their stuff.

What do you remember about your first day of Jiu Jitsu?

If I start in his guard and get tapped I won't feel as bad. Proceeds to get swept and put in a can opener

 What do you remember about your first tournament?

It was at U of H and it was so much fun. I met some co people and fell in love with competing.

Anything exciting coming up?

I'm fighting for Fury FC on June 29th. The following day I am gonna eat myself into a Donut coma.

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