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Bobo O’Bannon on BKFC Fight Night: Jackson, Alan Belcher Bout, and More

Bobo O’Bannon takes on Alan Belcher in the BKFC Fight Night: Jackson co-main event. This heavyweight clash transpires on January 29th at Jackson Convention Complex from Jackson, Mississippi.

I spoke with O’Bannon ahead of this collision and excerpts from our chat are below.


Why O’Bannon is so consistently underrated despite being demonstrably successful in BKFC

“I’m really not sure, to be honest with you. My whole life, I’ve always been an underdog in everything I’ve ever done. Baseball, football, track and field, everything. I’m used to (it), I kind of do the best whenever I’m the underdog. When people start expecting me to do good, you got this no problem, then I get a little more nervous. And start thinking about the things that I shouldn’t be thinking about. To have my mind in the right place. I’m glad to have the opportunity for this fight. I’m curious to see what happens too. I mean, in my mind, I’m winning this fight. In my mind, there’s no way I lose this fight. But every fighter should be that way.”

If it’s been communicated that this Alan Belcher bout is a title eliminator fight

“Oh, no, no, no, no. Nobody has said anything at all for or against. It’s not even a conversation that has came up. It has not happened. What you’re hearing is what I tell everybody, I am my worst critic. And so what you’re hearing come from me, is not something where I’ve had a conversation with somebody that led to it. No, it’s just me. Thinking about myself and my assessment of myself. And the way I really feel about how I have done. Crapping the bed on a couple of fights. That’s the way I truly feel that it should be for me. I am my worst critic and I tell people that all the time.”

Bobo O’Bannon

“To reiterate, to answer your question. No, nothing. Nothing from nobody nowhere. Anything about any title eliminator or guaranteed shot or any of that. I’ll be honest with you, I don’t feel like I deserve it. That’s just me. Now there’s a bunch of fans, fight fans, my fans, people that don’t like me, that like feel after I beat Belcher that I should get a title shot. Maybe, maybe not. I don’t know. Obviously, I’m not gonna turn it down if they give it to me. That would be stupid. But if they give it to me, heck yeah I’ll take it. My whole thing is from here forward, I’ve got a chip on my shoulder with myself. Over my lack of performance in a couple of fights.”

Bobo O’Bannon continued, “I knew going into the fight. I was not mentally prepared. Strictly one hundred percent my fault. Working the job I work, I was not taking the time to train the way I needed. I’m not blaming it on my job, I’m blaming it on me. Because like I said, I didn’t take the time. I didn’t set that time aside. And I messed up. I’m the reason why I lost two fights in a row. Shoot, go back and watch the Sam Shewmaker film. I put my hands down at my waist and let that sucker punch me right in the mouth. Other than that one time, you’ve never seen me drop my hands. Just a lack of preparation and I was nervous.”

Putting in full-time work as a Millwright when not knuckling up and toeing the line

“Yes, I work for Georgia Pacific Paper Company. I work anywhere between 40 and 100 hours a week. You never know which week is gonna be what hours. I’m a millwright maintenance technician. That is my full-time job… I do work a full-time job and I don’t foresee that being able to change anytime soon. I will be a full-time employee for a long time it looks like.”

Bobo O’Bannon continued, “And I’m fine with that, man. It’s a good way to make an honest living and a good living. But that’s what I do. I wake up every morning at 4:30, get clocked in by six o’clock. Get to work and get done at 4:30. Get back home by about 5:15, train with my coach until about 7:30-8 o’clock get a show dinner tough with wife and kids for a little bit. Go to sleep, wake up, and do it again.”

BKFC Fight Night: Jackson

If Bobo’s kids are at that age of comprehension yet where they fully understand what dad does

“My stepson is twelve and he understands everything fully on a level that scares me sometimes. Baby girl just turned four and she knows that daddy goes and wrestles in the ring with his friends. She doesn’t get to watch the fight live or whatever. We’ll wait till I come back home. I’ll tell her that me and my friend were wrestling and we got too rough. We’ll let her watch the video with me. So she’s right there with me and sees I’m okay. I show her what we did and she says daddy, you have to tell him he can’t do that no more. Ok, baby. Yes, mam, I’ll do it.”

The regular presence of Britton O’Bannon at fights and if she’ll be present at BKFC Fight Night: Jackson

“She will be. She will be there. I say she will be. With her, it’s a week to week, sometimes a day-to-day thing on how she’s feeling and how she’s doing. She’s been doing okay, been feeling pretty good here. Pretty sure she’s gonna be able to make it. Unless something drastically changes.”


BKFC fans appreciating how forthright and honest he is in general but specifically with his wife’s ongoing health situation

“I appreciate that, man. I’m thankful to my fans. People who enjoy watching me fight and like following me. I appreciate it. What I’ve noticed in life with a lot of people that I encounter, they want to try to make things sound worse than what they really are. And they want to try to make it sound like they had it worse than what they really do. I try my best to be the opposite way. I try my best to make things sound better than what they are. And make it sound like I have things better than what I do.”

“So I’ll try to take a turd and put a dress on it to make it look good. I’m not saying I have things bad. That’s not what I’m trying to sneak in the back door and say. That’s not it at all. I do have a good life, I do enjoy my life. I wouldn’t trade my wife and kids, my lifestyle, I wouldn’t trade it for anything. Yeah, I get it, there’s a lot of people that wouldn’t be able to handle what we handle on a daily basis. But you know what, there’s people that have to handle something else on a daily basis that we wouldn’t be able to handle.”

Bobo O’Bannon continued, “You just count your blessings, no matter what your blessings are. Look at them, see life for what it is, and see the blessings that you do have. Like I said, we got it like this, so we got to deal with that, or whatever. But there’s other people that are dealing with a lot worse than what we’re dealing with. We’re happy and thankful and know that we’re blessed to have things as good as we do. And it makes the good moments that much better for us.”

Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship

General thoughts on what O’Bannon has seen from Alan Belcher

“I know what he does right. I know what he does wrong. Know his weaknesses and strengths. I know his good habits and know his bad habits. I watch the film. The couple of little films that’s out there. I’ve seen it. The forms, the pops, the clicks, I’ve paid attention to all of it. I know it all by heart. The quote-unquote try to be sneaky little moves. Yeah, I know them, I got them, I see them and I expect them. If they don’t come then that’s fine too.”

“I watch film on people. Break people down and I study their good habits and their bad habits. I want to know all of them. So that whenever I get in there and I see things play out, I’m like he’s going back in just the same way that he fought during this fight. Okay, that’s what he did when he fought that fight. So this is what’s coming. This is what he’s working on. This what he’s trying to do. So yeah, I do watch it all but I take it all with a grain of salt too. Because if anybody would have watched my Mike Kyle fight. They never would have expected what I did during the Zach Calmus fight.”

Bobo O’Bannon continued, “And if you had have watched the Zach Calmus fight, you never would have expected what I did during the Lewis Rumsey fight. I’m evolving, I’m changing, I’m constantly making corrections to get better. I expect for my opponents, other fighters to do the same thing…Pay attention to it all. So if I see it in there, see that it’s still there. See that those things are still evident, then I know what to look for. I know what’s coming, I know what to do next, and I know what he’s going to do. It just makes things a little bit easier.”

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