Former collegiate wrestling standout and WWE superstar Bobby Lashley (0-0) will make his professional MMA debut for the Mixed Fighting Alliance on Dec. 13 in Miami.
Officials from the Florida-based organization recently confirmed Lashley's bout with fellow first-time fighter Joshua Franklin (0-0)
Lashley will make the appearance while on loan from the American Fight League, who have elected to suspend operations until 2009.
Lashley, a two-time NAIA national wrestling champion while at Missouri Valley College, also won two armed-forces titles while serving in the U.S. Army. The 32-year-old signed with the WWE in 2003 and debuted with the organization in 2005. His character won titles in both the WWE and Extreme Championship Wrestling organizations.
Lashley signed with the American Fight League in May. The former WWE superstar told MMAjunkie.com then that he was taking his time in preparation for his MMA debut.
"I'm putting it all together," Lashley said. "I'm going into this thing not with just overpowering my own style with [wrestling]. I'm actually learning everything else. I'm learning the jiu-jitsu; I'm taking it from the basics. I'm learning my kickboxing, my boxing. I'm getting the whole game tied together. So when I debut, it's not going to be a wrestler trying to do MMA. It's going to be a fighter."
In addition to Lashley vs. Franklin, "Mixed Fighting Alliance: There Will Be Blood" will be headlined by Jeff Monson (26-8) vs Ricco Rodriguez (34-9). That bout will represent a rematch from "UFC 35: Throwdown." That 2002 fight saw Rodriguez, who was on a nine-fight win streak at the time, victorious with a third-round TKO.