Tim Credeur is from south Louisiana, but when he fights inside the UFC’s Octagon he openly shoulders the pride of an entire state. That’s why the Lafayette product is trying to erase the stigma the I-10 corridor produces Louisiana’s only top-level mixed-martial artists.
Credeur, 32, has partnered with a local promoter to open Gladiators Academy of Shreveport/Bossier City. Credeur says he will serve as an “overseer” and teach at least once a month at the facility located off Old Minden Road in Bossier City.
“I’ve gone on record a number of times and said a lot of the problem with Louisiana talent flourishing was due to lack of coverage from the media and top quality gyms in the area,” said Credeur who now has five Gladiators Academys and plans for a sixth in Prairieville. “We’ve proven that we are willing to put in the time and effort. Our franchises have worked hard to make that a reality. We’ve seen it in south Louisiana.
“For whatever reason haven’t seen that much in north Louisiana. It’s not because there isn’t talent – there is phenomenal talent. The MMA just lacks some organization and top-level training.”
Credeur, who owns the name, runs his school in Lafayette while former UFC fighter Rich Clementi operates out of Slidell. Credeur helps UFC fighter Kyle Bradley run the Baton Rouge location. There is also a gym in San Antonio.
Shreveporter Will Broyles, who owns Ring Rulers (amateur MMA events) and Cage Kings (professional), will own the Bossier City gym. The gym will not just focus on MMA and will provide various fitness classes for all ages.
Five Louisiana products have fought in the UFC in recent months – they all hail from south Louisiana Credeur, Clementi, Pat Barry and Melvin Guillard (New Orleans) and Kyle Bradley (Baton Rouge).
“Crazy” Credeur, is a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and stands 3-0 in the UFC. He is scheduled to fight Nate Quarry on Sept. 16 in Oklahoma City. He gained his initial nationwide fame as a member of Season 7 of the UFC’s popular reality show, “The Ultimate Fighter.”
The head instructor of the Gladiators’ fight team might just be north Louisiana’s best shot at a UFC representative.
“The Boss” Chad Leonhardt, a Shreveporter by way of Lawton, Okla., will be the school’s head instructor. Leonhardt recently moved to 5-1 as a professional.
Leonhardt’s big break came in May, where he was selected to fight on a Bellator Fighting Championships card in Monroe. The 29-year-old’s Bellator debut was remarkable and the clip of his devastating knockout of Dan Keenan has garnered more than 130,000 hits on YouTube.
By: BY ROY LANG III