Solomon Renfro has fought his way to DWCS, main events and social media virality, but there is one thing he’s missing and December may be his last chance to earn it.
After award-winning viral interviews, show-stopping knockouts and a spot on the UFC FIGHT PASS Fighters to Watch list, Solomon Renfro came into 2022 ready to set the world on fire and be in the UFC by the Fourth of July.
He unfortunately ran into a very calculated Adam Fugitt at LFA 125 in his hometown and was knocked out in the first round, giving him his first losing streak of his career.
Renfro followed it up with a five-month break and one of the most dominant victories of his career. Less than three months after that, he knocked out Michael Irizarry Ortiz in the iKon FC 5 main event in front of Jorge Masvidal and a sold-out Savannah Convention Center.
The performance was as dominant as ever and Renfro actually left disappointed. He might have been too dominant.
“It went awesome,” Renfro said. “Not the way I wanted, but a top-notch finish is a top-notch finish. That was beautiful. It was great, I just wanted to add a little bit more of my art to it. I was hoping the guy was going to be able to stand with me and take a few more shots. I was really looking forward to putting on a show, but it’s ok. I’ll put on a show next time.”
At 25 years old, 10-3 as a professional and 8-2 on UFC FIGHT PASS promotions, Renfro’s performance warranted a call or demand for UFC attention, but all that’s on Renfro’s mind is one more performance to secure UFC FIGHT PASS Male Fighter of the Year honors.
“Honestly, I’ve always wanted to do that,” Renfro explained. “I saw guys won Fighter of the Year, and I wanted to do that. I was honestly really hurt about it last year, so, for me to start of the year by taking a loss, bounce back and pick up three quick wins, I think I deserve it. That’d be dope, I’d be honored.”
The ultimate goal is the UFC, but Renfro is calling for an angel to bless him with one more main event fight before 2022. He knows there are higher mountains ahead of him, but since midway through his Cage Fury FC career, being the face of UFC FIGHT PASS has been on his mind.
“My first FIGHT PASS interview I actually cried,” Renfro said. “I was so happy just to be mentioned by FIGHT PASS. Minor steps to a dream come true. I feel like a lot of people don’t give a f***, they just want to get to the UFC. They don’t care about legacy. For me I understand legacy, and this right now is the UFC FIGHT PASS chapter of my career and it means a lot to me. I want to be able to tell my kids about it one day.”
Other than time and a main event-caliber fighter, the only thing standing in Renfro’s way is potentially Bo Nickal.
Only a handful of years after becoming one of the most famous NCAA wrestlers of his generation, Nickal made his professional MMA debut and was met with the same fanfare he walked off the wrestling mat with.
Nickal buzzsawed through the only opponent who would accept a fight with him in less than a minute and had the entire world of combat sports talking about him for months. Still anticipating his debut, Nickal made one of the biggest splashes in UFC FIGHT PASS history but it wasn’t enough to convince Renfro he’s more deserving of the crown.
“Bo Nickal? How the f***? He’s gone,” Renfro said in disbelief. “He fought on FIGHT PASS once this year, the other fights were on ESPN+. He wasn’t even hardly on f*****g FIGHT PASS. Hat’s off to him, I’m happy he’s doing what he’s doing for himself and his family, but I feel like if he’s not fighting on FIGHT PASS more than I’m fighting on FIGHT PASS, I should be FIGHT PASS MVP.”
Feeling like his skillset is broader, his resume on the year is deeper and his reputation being more “fight focused,” Renfro has pushed aside rest and recovery after his October victory and is beating on the door for one more crack at main event opposition at iKon FC.
Despite the flawless victory at iKon FC 5, Renfro knows the fanfare behind Nickal’s FIGHT PASS outing and is praying for deeper waters to show the world what his arsenal looks like.
“Hopefully this next guy’s a little tougher,” Renfro said. “I’m going to slip and rip and I’m going to knock him out. If he can’t take it, he can’t take it. He might just drop with the jab again. This is 155 now, so I feel like I’m in there with little boys.”
December 2 will be Renfro’s opportunity to do what almost nobody on earth has been able to do, take the eyes off of Bo Nickal. Will he get it done? Sign up for UFC FIGHT PASS to find out.
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