Cormier’s incredible career began at Northside High School in his native Lafayette, Louisiana. During this time, he brought home three state wrestling championships with a combined record of 101-9.
After a stint at Kansas’ Colby Community College, where he was a two-time NJCAA wrestling champion, Cormier transferred to Oklahoma State University where he became an all-American in the 184-pound weight class.
After his graduation with a degree in sociology, Cormier’s accomplishments in freestyle wrestling are numerous. Among them are senior U.S. Championships every year from 2003 to 2008, gold medals at the 2003 Pan-American Games and the Golden Grand-Prix Ivan Yarygin, a bronze medal at the 2007 World Wrestling Championships, and fourth place at the 2004 Olympics.
Cormier made his professional MMA debut in 2009 with Xtreme MMA, winning the heavyweight championship in less than a year. Just two weeks after that feat, he captured the King of the Cage Heavyweight Championship. In 2012, Cormier won the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix tournament with a unanimous decision over Josh Barnett in the finals.
Cormier defeated former UFC Heavyweight Champion Frank Mir via unanimous decision in his 2013 UFC debut. He lost in his first Light Heavyweight title fight against Jon Jones, but rebounded a few months later and defeated Anthony Johnson for the same belt.
Cormier successfully defended the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship for three years before defeating UFC Heavyweight Champion Stipe Miocic – a win that cemented his legacy in MMA history by making him one of only two fighters to hold UFC Championships in two divisions.