Former Mizzou star, 2008 Olympic wrestler steps into cage fighting

Ben Askren was a Mizzou wrestling champion and 2008 Olympian in wrestling.

As a wrestler, he was a four-time All-American at Mizzou, two-time national champion wrestler, a two-time Hodge Award Winner and a 2008 Olympian.Ben Askren is arguably the greatest athlete the University of Missouri has produced.But Saturday night, Ben Askren stepped off the wrestling mats and into the octagon for his first professional cage-fighting match at an event called the ~Patriot Act. TMCage fighting is a form of mixed martial arts that combines wrestling, boxing and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.Most people might seem a little uptight or nervous before their mixed martial arts debut|but not Askren."You've got to stay relaxed...I can't keep my intensity that hi the whole night or I'll wear myself out," said Askren. After waiting 90 minutes for his match, it was finally show time for the former Olympian. And much like when he wrestled at Mizzou; Askren relished the spotlight and played to the crowd.There's only one Ben Askren and that's really the truth...he'll probably do the same thing in fighting here," said Head Hunter Events Promoter Wade Rome.He's a guy that you're going to love him to death...he's going to be very successful in this sport," said MMA fighter and Mizzou wrestler Tyron Woodley."Love to put on a show...I love to give them something exciting to watch," said Askren.The excitement of Askren TMs fight only lasted for 1:25."He hit me in the face a couple times...took him down and tried to throw some bombs on him," said Askren.Askren stated after his match he hasn't ruled out trying to make the 2012 Olympic Wrestling Team, but for right now he's just enjoying mixed martial arts.Askren TMs had a fight scheduled Feb. 26 in Miami, but it was canceled. He hopes to fight again on April 25 in Columbia at an event called the 'Patriot Act 2.'