2012 is not a year Scott Jorgensen will look back on fondly.
A February defeat to Renan Barao was followed by a vicious knockout at the hands of Eddie Wineland in June, and things were looking bleak for Jorgensen’s UFC career. Two straight losses, neither of them particularly competitive, and Jorgensen was dropped to the Facebook preliminaries to round out the year.
“I was really pissed off. I’m not a first fight guy. In my opinion I’m a main event fighter. I’m a co-main or a main card guy. In the UFC or WEC this will be my 15th or 16th fight (16th, for the record). I never put on a boring fight, I come to deliver. I have five ‘Fight of the Night’ bonuses, and two back-to-back, and I’m going to collect my third on Saturday. There was no mental ‘oh my God, they’re pissed at me.’ It was more like ‘I got stuck here and I’m pissed off that I got put on first.’ I want to be showcased. I want to be in the limelight.”
Jorgensen used that anger in a productive fashion, finishing John Albert in the first round in what was an exciting battle.
And it is that kind of exciting fight which has earned Jorgensen arguably the biggest opportunity of his career, fighting Urijah Faber in the main event of The Ultimate Fighter 17 Finale. Faber is coming off of an impressive win and knows a victory over Jorgensen will likely earn him another opportunity at UFC gold.
“We have two distinct striking styles. I don’t think he’s going to be able to change that up in the last five or six weeks since he fought Ivan Menjivar. The ground game, he’s a brown belt, and has been training with a jiu-jitsu coach much longer than I have because of my geographical location. I finally found a great jiu-jitsu coach who comes up from Rio whenever I need him to. My jiu-jitsu game is very strong. I’m very good on the ground. That’s been shown with John Albert. I fight reckless, I make some mistakes but I’ve tightened that up the last few weeks. That’s how I see the two of us matching up.”
With Jorgensen fighting in the main event of The Ultimate Fighter 17 Finale, the topic of coaching is fresh in the minds of fans. We have already seen one season of The Ultimate Fighter produce bantamweight stars, and the idea of coaching the television series is one that interests Jorgensen greatly. He feels that his past experience coaching in wrestling would make him an ideal candidate for any future seasons.
“I’d love to coach on the show, I think it would be a blast. I may not know everything. I know what I know thanks to coaches and I have a great staff around me. I do know how to motivate guys. I know how to get guys ready to fight and compete. I’ve coached for a long time because of wrestling. Even while I was in college I was coaching the high-school national team, getting guys ready for high level tournaments. Even now I go back home and go to combat fitness and get guys ready. I think it would be blast.”
In June, Barao will defend his interim bantamweight championship against Wineland, two fighters who Jorgensen took on in 2012. He shared his thoughts on the fight from his unique perspective as a former opponent of both fighters.
“Eddie is quick, he hits hard. He’s the only guy who was able to knock me out, which I think is a very tough thing to do. That being said, he hits hard, he’s fast, moves well, but Renan is very good at keeping distance and has a longer reach than Eddie does I think. Barao has a whole bunch of different things. His spinning back kicks, his jump knees, his leg kicks. He can throw a lot of different things, kind of keep you guessing. The thing that might prove to be a lot of trouble for Eddie is that Renan proved he can take guys down now, something he hadn’t done until he fought Macdonald. It’s a very good interesting fight.”