By: Michael Asiffo
Matt “The Hammer” Hamill from Loveland, Ohio is a 3-time NCAA Division III national championship wrestler and UFC fighter competing in the light heavyweight division. He is known for many things like his amazing wrestling ability, his improved stand up fighting and his very humble attitude. However what stands out for me is that Matt Hamill is an inspiration and a role model for everyone who aspires to be something in life no matter what. The reason why is because Matt Hamill is different from every other fighter currently on the UFC’s roster. Matt Hamill is unfortunately deaf and has had to live with being deaf all his life.
The movie “The Hammer” which was on Matt Hamill’s youth (specially college), really outlined that struggles Hamill had with his disability. These struggles were constant. Whether outside in everyday life or on the wrestling mat, Matt Hamill was at a disadvantage. However Matt Hamill persevered and went from being a walk-on to winning three NCAA Division III national championships for the Rochester Institute of Technology.
From then on Matt Hamill decided to pursue a career in mixed martial arts. This was seen as a big risk for Hamill. Hamill wouldn’t be able to listen to instructions during rounds and in between rounds he would have to look at signs. This in theory, put Hamill at a major disadvantage due to the fact that adjusting your fight plan during a round and listen to the head trainer is very important in MMA. Despite that risk, Dana White looked at Hamill’s credentials and decided to take a chance on him and Hamill made his mark on the Ultimate fighter. Although Hamill did not win, he quickly became a fan favorite because of the fact that everyone loves an underdog.
Hamill after the show improved immensely and sports a 12-4 record. He retired two years ago, however, he came back last year and won against Roger Hollett and now fights occasionally. Matt Hamill in his time at the UFC became a role Model and proved that anything is possible. For that reason Matt Hamill an inspiring athlete.