Levi Mowles (4-1) has been making an impact at Legacy, climbing up the rankings. Four of his five professional fights have been for Legacy Fighting Championship, and at LFC 61, Mowles will take part in his fifth bout for the promotion. Mowles faces former Legacy featherweight champion Damon ‘The Leech’ Jackson (9-1), and will be moving up a weight class to compete at 145lb.
Mowles started training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu at thirteen years old, and took part in powerlifting in high school. He moved into MMA and went 7-0 as an amateur, having been fighting for three years. Despite having five professional fights and seven amateur fights under his belt, Mowles is relatively young for his level of experience, being just twenty-one years of age, but already having eight years of training behind him. As well as competing in MMA Mowles also still competes in Jiu Jitsu.
“I just took part in the Fight to Win Pro in San Antonio. It was a really good back and forth fight. I felt I was losing in the eyes of the judges. I ended up chasing a sub and I lost, in the last twenty seconds I got caught. It’s kind of like MMA in the set up with the crowd watching you.”
Some MMA fighters like to do Jiu Jitsu tournaments between fights to help them maintain a sense of competing;
“I definitely think it helps in keeping my Jiu Jitsu sharp. I will say though that Jiu Jitsu for competition and for MMA are different, but what is more important is that it helps me mentally and keeping my mental aspect sharp. It helps going into an MMA fight that I know I’ve been doing well in Jiu Jitsu tournaments.”
Mowles’ only professional loss was a close call to Tony Kelley (5-1);
“Kelley went all three rounds and went to split decision. I thought I’d won but the judges thought different. I think the loss drove me to be a better fighter.”
The last fight Mowles had at Legacy was with the experienced Edwin Figueroa (6-5);
“I knew he wouldn’t have my grappling or wrestling. My game plan was to take him down and submit him. It didn’t quite work out and went to decision. During my amateur career, none of my fights went to decision. Going to decision was a shock my first time when I fought Yanez. It doesn’t seem to be as much of a concern anymore. I’ve gone three rounds and it’s been ok. Knowing that I can fight under those circumstances and be successful, mentally it’s not an issue going all three rounds.”
For Levi Mowles, his opponent represents a step up in competition;
“Damon Jackson has got really good wrestling and decent Jiu Jitsu. I actually think our styles cancel each other out, and think that it will come down to standup. I feel I edge him out standing. I saw his last three fights in the UFC. He depended on his Jiu Jitsu and wrestling, and didn’t improve much in his striking between fights. I don’t like to make predictions, but I hope to finish him in the second round or early third.”
Mowles continues to train at Fitness Fight Factory (F3) in the North Richland Hills area;
“I’ve been with Brandon Quik from the beginning; also we have Johnny Bedford and Evan Cutts teaching there as well. Having Johnny as a partner and wrestling coach is really good having competed at a high level. We’ve been having a a lot of lighter guys coming in to train, like Chris Gutierrez whose a 135er. He’s fought in Bellator and World Series of Fighting. Chas Skelly, when he’s in town, although he’s now based in Florida. Also Pat Curran has been in a few times who was Bellator champion. It’s really helped me be more comfortable in the aspect of fighting. In training, I’m not so antsy on my feet; I don’t get star struck anymore when someone new comes in. It doesn’t affect me training; I’m used to training with guys of that caliber. If I can make a fight just another day in the gym, then that’s what I want to do, and training with high level guys gives you that.”
Following this fight, Mowles already has another event lined up;
“I have another Fight To Win Pro in Dallas. Unfortunately, having that as well has hurt my ticket sales. In December, I have another Legacy fight against Jimmy Flick in Tulsa, OK. Next year I want to approach the title. I took this fight on short notice, and will go back to fight at 135 lb and hopefully get a shot at that title. Hopefully the winner of De La Rosa and Peterson will fight me. I think my name needs to be mentioned in there.
“I’d like to thank my sponsors, friends, and training partners. Also everyone in the gym and everyone who helped me get ready, my brother, Johnny, Evan, Brandon and everyone.”