2x NCAA champion and 2008 Olympian Steve Mocco is moving from the wrestling mat to the cage full time. According to MMAFighting, Mocco will be joining American Top Team after failing to make the 2012 US Olympic team. A spot occupied by standout Tervel Dlagnev.
Mocco has spent the last few years Coaching at Lehigh University in addition to his national team duties. Mocco took 7th at the 2008 Beijing Games. Mocco is well known in the college wrestling world as a 2x national champion and for his rivalries with Ohio State Buckeye Tommy Rowlands and Minnesota’s Cole Konrad. Now the Bellator champion, Konrad was actually the man to deny former Cowboy (and Hawkeye) wrestler his third NCAA title in Mocco’s final collegiate match.
At 6 foot and 260 pounds, Mocco has often used a very physical style of wrestling that also blends some Judo techniques into his arsenal, including an incredibly quick footsweep takedown. American Top Team has been recruiting top wrestlers into their camps to improve their already strong brazilian jiu-jitsu and muay thai based fight camps. Mocco was originally brought down, after the Olympic trials in April, to help Antonio Silva prepare for Cain Velasquez. American Top Team quickly offered him a chance to train full time and Mocco jumped at the opportunity.
There is no timetable for Mocco’s MMA debut at this time.