Josh Rich Earns Title Shot With Victory in Michigan

Dresden native Josh Rich continued his climb up the ranks of amateur mixed martial arts on the weekend with a first round submission victory over Derek Smith at TXC 49, in Highland, Michigan. Rich battled 6-4 Michigan fighter Derek Smith in a fight for the number one contender spot in the 135-pound division.

Rich wasted no time and came out striking from the opening bell, forcing Smith to retreat and defend with his back to the cage. Rich secured a nice takedown from there and a brief sramble on the ground ended up with Josh getting the advantage and taking Smith’s back.

Getting the back position on an opponent is often the beginning of the end of a fight and Smith tried to defend by slamming back with Josh landing under him. The defensive slam was not the answer for Smith and Rich hung on tight and sunk in a rear-naked choke at 1:40 of the first round.

With the win, the Gracie Barra Chatham fighter improved to 4-1 in his amateur career and put himself next in line for a shot at the TXC 135-pound title on May 12th, 2012. Fans can look forward to supporting Josh in that fight and Thomas Armstrong and the crew at Gracie Barra are participating in some very exciting events coming up in the near future.

Upcoming Events:
Niagara Open April 14-15
World BJJ Championships May 30-June 4 in California.

Dwight Wakabayashi is a Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report MMA / MMA Editor at and guest blogger at

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