5 Incredible Wrestling Achievements of Ben Askren

Published 04/13/2021, 9:36 AM EDT
SINGAPORE, SINGAPORE – SEPTEMBER 03: Ben Askren fields questions from the media during a UFC Singapore on-sale press conference at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel on September 03, 2019 in Singapore. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC)

Ben Askren is a former Bellator and ONE welterweight champion. Often considered as one of the greatest wrestlers of his generation, the former UFC star has an incredible MMA record of 19-2 and was one of the most successful Bellator champions of all time.


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Askren has achieved a lot in MMA and wrestling. We look at some of his best achievements as an MMA fighter and as an international wrestler.

Becoming the first-ever NCAA champion in Missouri wrestling history


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Ben Askren was the first-ever NCAA champion in Missouri wrestling history. He won the championship back in 2006, and at the end of the championship, was named the Most Outstanding Wrestler.

Askren reached the finals of the NCAA for four consecutive years, and he even won the tournament on two occasions, in 2006 and 2007. Ben Askren competed in the 174 lb division and was considered one of the greatest wrestlers of that generation.

Askren is No.4 in the all-time NCAA Division One list

Askren was a dominating wrestler during his collegiate wrestling days. He won the Big 12 championship twice and the NCAA twice. Such dominance made sure that when he was done, his record was an impressive 153-8.

93 out of those victories came via submission, and that achievement puts him third on the all-time NCAA Division 1 list. Askren had an incredible run in Collegiate wrestling. During that time, he just lost to two opponents Chris Pendleton and Ryan Lange.

Ben Askren won his last 87 matches in a row

Askren was in absolute dominant form in his final two collegiate wrestling years. The wrestler won 87 matches in a row, this record puts him in the Top 10 all-time in NCAA history. Askren also holds the record for pinning 18 consecutive opponents.

During the 2006 and 2007 seasons, Askren went undefeated, and this time period spreading over 2 years is one of the longest in NCAA history. Askren is also a two-time winner of the Dan Hodge Award that is given to the best collegiate wrestler of the year.

Askren was named the Most Outstanding Wrestler at the Big 12 Championships.

Ben competed in the Big 12 championship, where he was a three-time champion. ‘Funky’ was also named the Most Outstanding wrestler at the Big 12 championship. During the tournament, he even defeated the eventual NCAA champion, Chris Pendleton. Funky reached four consecutive finals of the tournament.

Pendleton had always been Askren’s nemesis. He defeated ‘Funky’ seven times, and the only time Askren defeated Pendleton was at the Big 12 championship.

The second University of Missouri wrestler to compete in the Olympics.

Askren qualified for the Olympics in 2008 after he defeated Tyrone Lewis in two consecutive matches. The wrestler became only the second wrestler from the University of Missouri after Sammie Henson to qualify for the Olympics.


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Askren had an impressive start to his Olympic journey as he defeated Istvan Vereb in his first match, but his form dropped and Askren did not end up winning the medal. Although his performances in the Olympics gathered praise from all around.

Ben Askren is a wrestling and MMA legend- the fighter has competed in three of the most popular MMA promotion in the world. ‘Funky’ is also one of the greatest wrestlers of all time and has even represented the USA in the Olympics.


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Askren has had a long and storied career. He has achieved many records and accolades throughout his storied career. Askren has retired, but we as fans look forward to the next phase in Askren’s life and are waiting to see what our favorite fighter will get up to.


Paras Pande

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Paras Pande is a UFC author at EssentiallySports who is pursuing his graduation in Journalism and Mass Communication. An ardent follower of the UFC, he has been covering the sport for 2 years now. Before joining the team at EssentiallySports, Paras gained expertise as an MMA writer whilst working with Sportskeeda.