How does one determine their place in the competitive sport of mixed martial arts?

It all comes down to building a reputation through passion and dedication. Do it right, and the result could be great success down the road in one’s fight career. Resurrection Fighting Alliance bantamweight contender Jarred Mercado is pushing to reach his full potential.  He is ready to face any challenge and demonstrate that he has what it take to become a future champion.

Mercado (Phil Lambert/The MMA Corner)

Mercado (Phil Lambert/The MMA Corner)

Since his days as an NCAA wrestler, Mercado has used competition as a way to challenge himself in the pursuit of athletic excellence. It only seemed fitting for Mercado, a longtime MMA fan, to show a desire in taking his skills to the next level in a new combat-sport field. The smooth transition to MMA allowed him to effectively utilize his strong wrestling pedigree, while combining it with other essential fighting styles in building himself into a well-rounded fighter.

“With wrestling being one of the most important aspects in MMA, it  definitely gave me a leg up coming into the sport,” Mercado told The MMA Corner. “Since then, it’s been about translating that into MMA, while also learning the other aspects, like Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and striking, and putting it all together.”

Since his arrival on the fight circuit, Mercado has tallied an impressive 11-1 professional fight record that has earned him honors as one of the top rising stars out of Colorado. Mercado’s reputation must have made quite the impression on RFA, because his debut with the organization finds him competing as one half of a No. 1 contender match for the vacated bantamweight title in the co-main event of RFA 16. Aside from striving for improvement, Mercado credits his current success to having a strong support system that pushes him to reach his goals.

“I believe what got me to this point is surrounding myself with the right people in my teammates and coaches at Elevation Fight Team and Easton Training Center,” Mercado revealed.

The training staff at Elevation Fight Team and Easton Training Center has given this ambitious fighter all the resources he needs to become a success. It’s definitely been revealed in his performance thus far. Thanks to his teammates and coaches, Mercado is fully prepared to face any opponent standing across the cage from him.

With past scheduled opponents Joe Murphy and Jake Klemme out from injuries, Mercado now takes on the short-notice task of facing new opponent 11-3 Daniel Swain. Fresh off a victory over Roy Bradshaw at King of the Cage: Unleashed, Swain looks to capitalize off this golden opportunity.

Mercado (L) (Phil Lambert/The MMA Corner)

Mercado (L) (Phil Lambert/The MMA Corner)

“Daniel is a good wrestler who also wrestled in college. He is coming down a weight, so I’ll expect him to be strong as well,” said Mercado. “Based on wrestling being the toughest sport in the world, I’ll anticipate him being mentally tough and scrappy.

“It’s too late in the game to build a specific game plan. I just have built a specific style and have coaches that improved my skills in all areas and situations. I reviewed some film to see what stance he is, but at this point it’s putting my strengths against his and seeing who is the better man.”

With a victory over Swain, Mercado will move one step closer to fighting for his first major title. It will undoubtedly be a monumental moment in his career, but his competitive mentality doesn’t stop if he becomes the RFA bantamweight champion. With a fleet of previous RFA titleholders signing with the UFC, Mercado hopes to follow the trend.

“I don’t want to fight easy opponents; I want to test my skills against the best. This fight gives me the opportunity to launch myself in one day facing the best of the world in the UFC.”

Jarred would like to thank Innovapor, Gnat Jewelry, River Rock, Mr Nice Guys, Boss Chem, Death Stalker MMMA, Garden Of Life, New Spirit Wellness and Scruffy Murphys. Follow Mercado on Twitter: @jmercadoMMA

About The Author

Monta Wiley
Staff Writer

Monta Wiley is an aspiring sports journalist that has covered the world of MMA and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. He has been a regular contributor to US Combat Sports. Monta has a Bachelor's degree in Aviation Administration from California State University-Los Angeles. Outside of his writing, you can find Monta at the gym honing his BJJ technique.