Did The First BJJ / MMA Club At UGA Produce A UFC World Champion?

Did you know the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu club at the University of Georgia in Athens dates back to 1997 when it was founded by northern transplants, brothers Adam and Rory Singer? The Singer Brothers were students at UGA (who would go to earn three Engineering degrees between them) when they began a club known at the time as Integrated Fighting Systems. They were in search of training partners as their own coaches were across the country on the west coast. What better way to become better teachers, gain training partners, and spread the art than to start a student club on campus.

It was during their three years teaching on the second floor of the Ramsey Student Center that they would meet a student destined for greatness. Those familiar with the former UGA alumna, Forrest Griffin, know that he would go on the win the UFC Light Heavyweight World Championship. Forrest was only the second person to compete (Rory Singer being the first) under the tutelage of the Singer Brothers. They remain close friends almost 25 years later.

Coach Rory Singer & Adam Singer with Forrest Griffin after his UFC fight

Even though the name (The HardCore Gym) and location has changed over the years, SBG Athens remains an Athens, GA staple and has created: two world champions, four The Ultimate Fighter veterans, a dozen UFC veterans, and eleven Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Black Belts. Though one thing has never changed: our continued service to the student population of the flagship university in the state of Georgia.

For over 20 years, thousands of UGA students have call SBG Athens home. Being a part of the SBG Athens tribe not only guarantees they will get the best martial arts education in Athens, but it connects them to a worldwide network of amazing people. You see, every SBG both in the United States and abroad is full of professionals from all walks of life. At SBG Athens alone one can find leaders of industry, CEOs, doctors, lawyers, professors, teachers, nurses, entrepreneurs, police, military recruiters, active duty military, graduate students, law students, doctoral candidates, and so much more.

Forrest Griffin Seminar with SBG Athen's Students

Not only has this network helped students find employment, it has caused graduates to call Athens home even after graduation. The Tribe is that powerful and although many students move away after a brief respite in the Classic City, still others continue to call Athens home because of the connections they have made at SBG Athens. 

Training at SBG under two of the UFC’s Top 100 MMA coaches gains you so much more than the best martial arts education in Athens, GA. You gain a tribe of caring coaches, fellow students, and the ability to do a lot of good in your community. SBG Athens donates near 40,000 pounds of food yearly to the Food Bank of Northeast Georgia, has been voted group of the year by Keep Athens Clarke County Beautiful, hosts one of the largest off campus blood drives, is a leading supporter of Toys for Tots, and so much more. Come for the martial arts and stay for the amazing community. This is SBG Athens, you will be okay!