One on One with The Spaniard Charlie Brenneman


Coming off the biggest win of his career, Charlie Brenneman will step back into the UFC cage in October to take on the hard-hitting Anthony Johnson in a Welterweight clash. The former Lock Haven University stand-out wrestler has flourished in his young MMA career. Since his pro debut in 2007, The Spaniard has amassed a 14-2 record, with notable wins over Jason High and most recently Rick Story. From High School Spanish teacher, where the nickname comes from, to winning the reality show Pros vs Joes, Brenneman’s work ethic and dedication has followed him in every endeavor in his life, including netting him a Top 12 finish at Nationals while wrestling for The Haven. recently talked with Charlie Brenneman to discuss his upcoming fight and his commentary debut at the MASS event in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania.

MMAValor: Thank you for taking the time out to do this interview. You were originally slated to fight TJ Grant on the UFC on Versus 4 card in you home state of Pennsylvania but he was forced off the card due to an illness, how disappointed where you with the news when you first heard?

Charlie Brenneman: It was devastating; I was looking forward to fight in front of all of my fans.

MV: As fate would have it, you were brought back on the card and moved into the co-main event slot to take on Rick Story after Nate Marquardt wasn’t cleared to fight, did the UFC give you any word to maintain the ability to make the weight or was in something you were doing anyway just in case you were brought back on the card?

CB: I was told I had to make-weight to get my “show money”

MV: Taking a fight like this on short notice, what kind of plan did you come into the fight with, originally training for a guy like TJ Grant to now take on a fighter like Rick Story?

CB: To be honest, I just do what I do. I’m a professional fighter who has to be prepared to fight anyone on any given day, and I do just that.

MV: You were able to secure several takedowns on Story who is also known as a solid wrestler in the welterweight division. Did you think they would come like they did?

CB: I did, I believe in my wrestling game, and my ability to mix striking and takedowns.

Anthony Johnson

MV: Recently announced by the UFC and yourself, you will be taking on Anthony Johnson on UFC on Versus 6 in October, what is your opinion on Rumble as a fighter, recently saying on his twitter that he respects both you and your camp?

CB: He’s a beast. A physical specimen. That being said, I feel there are several areas in which I can capitalize. I’m confident that my coaches and I can put together a great game plan.

MV: Without, obviously, giving too much away where do you think your strengths lie in this fight and some things you might work on coming into the event?

CB: Well, head movement will be at the forefront. Otherwise, I’ll train what I traditionally train, a mix of everything. Once we get closer to the date, we’ll work on the danger zones for myself, and also more specific techniques for him.

MV: Training at AMA, you get to work with some solid guys including the Miller brothers, Jamie Varner among others, being a former wrestling coach yourself, is there anything you bring to the table and vice versa, new things you learned from those guys?

CB: You mention the Millers and Varner, but we have a stable of great fighters to train w. I’m constantly picking up BJJ tips for TUF’s Andy Main and our lightest fighter Shorty Santella. Likewise, I share  my expertise in wrestling w those guys. It’s reciprocal for sure.

MV: Recently you were at the MASS event in Wilkes-Barre, PA, doing some commentary for the event, was this your first foray into commentating and how did you enjoy it? What did you think of the fights during the evening?

CB: It was, and I really enjoyed it. I’m hoping to get a copy of the DVD and pass it on to the UFC for the future. They put on a great event, MASS was a big success with awesome action, and there were several thousand fans in attendance.

MV: Wanna thank you again for taking the time out of your schedule to answer some questions for us here at MMAValor. Where can fans follow you and any sponsors you would like to thank.

CB: @SpaniardMMA on Twitter, I want to thank AMA Fight Club, my boxing coach Mark Henry, and my strength and conditioning coach Don Messing.

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