1-1800 Nyle Beganovic

From sophomore to senior, one student was randomly selected to tell their story.

Sidny Pohlman, Staff Writer

Mixed martial arts (MMA) is a full-contact combat sport that allows and incorporates a wide variety of fighting techniques. It allows skills from a mixture of other combat sports to be used in competition. MMA contains usage of various fighting techniques while both standing and on the ground. The UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) is the largest mixed martial arts (MMA) organization in the world. The UFC showcases only the best international fighters. 

In 7th grade, Nyle Beganovic ‘25 found his love for the sport,

“Everyone was doing wrestling in 7th grade so I wanted to give it a shot. But after wrestling, I started watching MMA and everyone fighting in the cage, and I really liked and got interested in that. After that I just taught myself a lot and started going to MMA gyms and now I’ve built my own gym in my basement to train at,” Beganovic said.

Beganovic works consistently to help achieve his big dreams for the future. He wants to be a UFC fighter. Aside from building his own personal gym, he goes to MMA gyms and trains up to six times a week to build his skill set. MMA training requires preparation in multiple ranges of combat, and becoming a UFC fighter isn’t easy. It takes exceptional fighting skills, and you have to train, learn, compete and master at least one martial art to become eligible for UFC. 

“I just want to be in the octagon, I love fighting, I love the sport. Like, for my career after high school I want to be in the UFC, it’s just this is what I love, and what I like doing,” Beganovic explained.

Beganovic acknowledges that it requires mental toughness, discipline, and intense conditioning, and additionally learning MMA is difficult because you have to learn all aspects of the art of fighting. He overlooks the toughness of the sport due to the reward of winning fights, and participating in something that he loves. 

But MMA isn’t where he started. Wrestling is what helped him find his new passion.  Although Beganovic found his love for MMA fighting, he didn’t lose his love for the sport that got him where he is. “I mainly do wrestling to build up skills for MMA, but I wrestled before I found my love for fighting.” Since MMA is a hybrid combat sport it utilizes wrestling in certain aspects, allowing Beganovics wrestling training to help him develop his fighting technique. He wrestled varsity this year and went 10-16 on the season (10 wins, 16 losses). “I definitely had a fun wrestling season. Wrestling varsity is cool, getting to go up against the best of the best.”

He references the hard working nature of the sport as he briefly mentions teaching himself the art of fighting. He’s been self taught since he first decided to become an MMA fighter 4 years ago. Beganovic describes that both wrestling and MMA have taught him a lot of discipline, especially training six times a week, including through the month of Ramadan. Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, is one of the most sacred times for Muslims. During this month, participants observe a strict daily fast from dawn until sunset. Through these daylight hours, they are not allowed to eat or drink, not even water. The act of fasting is meant to remind Muslims of the less fortunate and to reinforce the need to be thankful, as well as serving as a form of spiritual discipline. 

“My family and I, we’re Muslim, and I’d say I’m pretty strict about my religion. It’s an important aspect of my life.” 

Since Beganovics future relies on making it to the UFC, training is a necessity — which is why Ramadan doesn’t stop him.  He still manages to stay highly conditioned throughout the 30 days of fasting. 

“It’s really hard to train, but I still go to the gym to continue to maintain my strength, and build my skills, it’s just a little harder.” 

Beganovic has big dreams for his future, and he works hard to make UFC fighting a reality. His aspirations for the future all revolve around fighting. He acknowledges his family’s opinion on his career choice, 

“They support but they also want me to do something with college and, like they don’t want me to get hurt, because like, fighting is dangerous.” MMA has repeatedly been described as the hardest sport, requiring not only physical strength, but mental toughness as well. Additionally, it’s hard in competition, incorporating almost every hand-to-hand combat sport. The nature of the sport is intense. Beganovic lists the downsides of the sport, like injury, and physical and mental strain, further acknowledging the danger and his family’s concerns.

“It’s still just what I love, and my family knows that. They still want me to do what I love.” 

Nonetheless, Beganovic has big dreams for his future and evidently works consistently to pursue them.