According to an article Tuesday on ProMMAInsider.com, life has undergone some massive changes for eight time world boxing champion Jessica Rakoczy over the past few months. Although she has reached the absolute pinnacle of boxing in her great career, it wasn't until she landed a spot in the UFC's 'The Ultimate Fighter 18' that she finally started to gain the recognition that has been long overdue. And at 36-years-old, she fully intends on taking advantage of all the opportunities the exposure will grant her.
Coming into the show, fans had low expectations of her, noting her sub par 1-3 MMA record as a reason to doubt her deserving a place on the show. However, they were much to quick to dismiss her championship pedigree in boxing, as well failing to realize her record is deceiving when you consider who the losses were to, and that she had no ground training when she took those fights. Since her highly questionable loss to Felice Herrig, Jessica Rakoczy has spent a large part of the last two years learning to grapple from RobertDrysdale, one of the absolute best jiu-jitsu guys in the world. She no longer resembles the fighter who was once lost in the cage against fighters like Michelle Ould and Zoila Frausto Gurgel.
Proving how far she has come, she dispatched of Revelina Berto to earn her spot in the TUF house, despite technically failing two show requirements of having a winning record, and not being over the age of 34. And for those who thought it was just another boxer she beat in Berto, she further proved how far she has come by knocking out jiu-jitsu master Roxanne Modafferi on last week's episode.
The win puts her in the semi-finals of the show where another win means she will have an opportunity to compete at the TUF 18 finale in November for the opportunity to be named "The Ultimate Fighter." But first things first, she has to win her next fight against another fighter that fans are sure to think will have too much experience on the ground for her. Despite doubts of others, Jessica is confident that her ground game has come along far enough, that coupled with her superior striking, she will be a big threat to anyone who ends up on the other side of the cage from her.
Fans will just have to wait and see what is next for her though, as 'The Ultimate Fighter' airs each Wednesday on Fox Sports 1. Depending on the order of the upcoming fights, it will be somewhere around a month before we find out who she fights next and if she can once again show how far she has come. For those around her on a daily basis, her progression comes as little surprise.
Check out our interview with Jessica Rakoczy from the Mayweather Boxing Club, where she was busy getting in some training with her coach Dewey Cooper.