Bo Nickal joins the UFC

Annaliese Witmer, Sports Editor

Three-time NCAA wrestling champion Bo Nickal is moving on from wrestling and joining the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). Bo has won 3-0 in professional fights, and in Bo’s most recent fight he won by submission in just under a minute.

While attending Penn State University, Bo had a collegiate record of 120-3. Bo was a three-time NCAA champion, as well as a three time Big 10 conference champion. In 2019, Bo also claimed the Hodge Award.

Wrestling and Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) are very similar. Gage Long, a senior member of the Bellefonte High School wrestling team, believes that is why Bo has dominated in the sport so far. 

Zack Witmer, a sophomore on Columbia University’s wrestling team, believes that wrestlers transition to the UFC better then any other martial art athletes. 

“Wrestling and MMA have a lot of overlap. Both sports often require strict weight management, intense focus, and an extreme work ethic in order to succeed. Historically wrestlers transition better than any other martial to MMA,” Zack said.

Zack and Gage both believe that Bo has the skill set to rise to the top and dominate the UFC very quickly. 

“Bo Nickal joining the UFC is really cool and a huge opportunity for him to make a career. I remember watching him wrestle for Penn State, so it’s really cool to still see him dominating sports,” Gage said    

Zack believes that Bo has the qualities to be successful in whatever he where to pursue after wrestling.  

“I think Bo will be very successful in the UFC. To become a national champion is an amazing feat, let alone doing it three times. With as strong of a mind Bo has I think he can succeed in whatever he pursues,” Zack said. 

Gage believes that if Bo’s fights so far are any glimps into his future in this sport, then Bo will be very successful in the UFC.

“I think Bo Nickal will have a good career and climb to the top. He’s already done very well in his previous fights, and he is going to continue to go crazy in the UFC. I’m really looking forward to watching him,” Gage said.