Downey to face world champ Ryan in BJJ Fanatics submission/wrestling event Feb. 29

Pat Downey at the 2019 World Championships (Photo/Tony Rotundo,

Pat Downey, junior college wrestling champ, NCAA All-American and 2019 U.S. World Team member, will be participating in two top-of-the-card matches at the BJJ Fanatics Grand Prix on Saturday, Feb. 29.

The Jiu Jitsu Times reported Sunday that Downey will face Gordon Ryan, ADCC Submission Fighting World Federation Champion, in two types of matches -- first, a Brazilian jiu jitsu match with no time limit, with winner to be determined by submission only … immediately followed by a freestyle wrestling match under international rules.

The Ryan-Downey main event matches -- as well as the rest of the BJJ Fanatics Grand Prix -- will be streamed live on FiteTV.

Both contestants shared news about their participation at the Feb. 29 Leap Day event on social media.

Downey tweeted the following:

Ryan posted this message on his Instagram page:

Ryan, 24, is a two-time gold medalist at the 2017 and 2019 ADCC World Championships. The New Jersey native earned two gold medals (+ 97.5 kilograms/214 pounds; absolute) at the 2018 No-Gi World Championships, as well as two golds in the same categories at the 2018 No-Gi Pan American Championships.

Downey brings an amateur wrestling background to the event. The 28-year-old Baltimore native won two Maryland high school state titles before heading west to Iowa, where he was a 2015 NCJAA national champion at Iowa Central Community College. As an Iowa State wrestler, Downey then earned NCAA Division I All-American honors by placing fifth in the 197-pound bracket at the 2016 NCAAs at Madison Square Garden in New York. Since being released from the Cyclones in Feb. 2017, Downey has concentrated on freestyle competition. At the 2019 World Championships, Downey placed ninth at 86 kilograms/189 pounds.


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MLJ (1) about 10 months ago
I thought Ryan retired last month?
pdowney2 (1) about 10 months ago
Downey is 27, not 28, and was also the 2019 U.S. Open Champion.