Football pros, collegiate grapplers highlight WWE Performance Center tryout

Football pros, collegiate grapplers highlight WWE Performance Center tryout

ORLANDO, Fla. — Thirty-two athletes, with backgrounds spanning the NFL, NCAA wrestling, mixed martial arts and other sports, reported to the WWE Performance Center today for a tryout.

The tryout, which takes place over three days, will be overseen by Performance Center Head Coach Matt Bloom.

“Because our next rookie class is already full of experienced in-ring workers and international diversity, this tryout is focused on athletes and entertainers from all over North America,” Canyon Ceman, WWE’s vice president of talent development, said. “We have made a special effort to target both elite football and amateur wrestling backgrounds for this tryout. We hope to round out the next incoming class of talent with a diverse set of world-class sports-entertainers.”

Among the prospects invited to this camp are:

  • Blaize Cabell, a University of Northern Iowa heavyweight grappler and three-time NCAA tournament qualifier;
  • Junior Aumavae, a 311-pound nose tackle formerly signed with the New York Jets and Dallas Cowboys;
  • Paul Cheng, a former first-round draft pick of the Canadian Football League-turned-MMA fighter;
  • Demitrius Bronson, a running back formerly signed with the Miami Dolphins and Seattle Seahawks;
  • Nathan Redwing, a 290-pound independent wrestler who played football at Peru State College;
  • Arkady Unterleidner, an NPC bikini competitor who has trained under Brian Kendrick;
  • Brian Waymire, a 6-foot-9 former Division I swimmer who attended the 2013 NFL combine;
  • Yaseen Mudassar, a 300-pound, two-time All-American wrestler, who competes in the independent circuit as “Yaseen (The Persian) Machine”; and
  • Ashley Urbanski, an independent wrestler who was a 2015 Tough Enough finalist featured on last year’s WWE Network competition special.

Video of the tryout was posted on the NXT Facebook page via Facebook Live:

Stay tuned to for more information on the WWE Performance Center tryouts.

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