Lemoore, Calif. - Two Ultimate Fighting Championship veterans and "The Ultimate Fighter" cast members will take time away from cutting some weight on Wednesday, May 4th to speak to local youth at Selma High School.
Gerald Harris and Efrain Escudero, who will both be competing at Tachi Palace Fights "The Contenders" on May 6th, will speak to youth about staying in school, bullying and take part in a question-and-answer segment.
The Tachi Palace Hotel and Casino and Selma Youth Wrestling Club are hosting the event at Selma High School starting at 6 p.m. in the wrestling room. The event is free and open to the public and parents are in encouraged to bring their youth.
"This is an opportunity for me to give back to the sport of wrestling and to the kids," said Escudero, who won Season 8 of Spike TV's hit series "The Ultimate Fighter".
"I devoted my life to wrestling, year around and day in and day out and when I became a fighter wrestling was still a key part of my success. Still to this day, I go back to my roots, but at the end of the day if you're not passing classes or being a good citizen you can't accomplish your dreams and goals."
Escudero fought in the summer months early in his career while he attended Pima Community College where he became an All-American in wrestling.
"I really want to speak to the kids about the importance of education, setting goals and really making education a priority," Escudero said. "I came from nothing. I was the youngest of five brothers and sisters and the first to graduate high school and go on to college."
Escudero is 16-2 in mixed martial arts and has strung together three wins after a setback in the UFC that saw him get cut. The 25-year-old, who was born in Mexico and now lives in Arizona will take on San Diego, Calif. lightweight Fabricio Camoes (11-5-1).
"A lot of people say that since I won ‘TUF' why would I still go to college," Escudero said. "First, I want to make my family proud and I also want to have a backup plan ... education is a way out of fighting and the mental stress. You can't think about fighting 24 hours a day."
Escudero will be joined by Tulsa, Okla.'s Gerald Harris, who was a cast member of Season 7 of "The Ultimate Fighter".
"I enjoy speaking to children so that they can understand how daily positive choices will help their future," Harris said.
Harris was once considered one of the more exciting fighters in the UFC, and much like Escudero comes from a wrestling background. He will face Coarsegold, Calif. middleweight Anthony Ruiz (25-15).
The Selma Youth Wrestling Club is ranked No. 1 in the state and No. 4 in the country in many youth wrestling publications.