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Jacare must get next middleweight title shot

While Tim Boetsch is far from a quality opponent, Jacara Souza has beaten every legitimate opponent he’s had in front of him for five years and has been getting passed over for deserved title shots since 2015.

If Jacare Souza is not the next challenger for the UFC middleweight championship then that division has become pointless. When Chris Weidman was the champion and there appeared to be a very deep group of challengers, including former champion Luke Rockhold, current champion Michael Bisping, ‘Soldier of God’ Yoel Romero and Souza, there was a reason to pass Souza over for title shots that could be defended.

Now, there is no reason he should not get the next shot, but it was interesting that the UFC schedule Anderson Silva on the same card. With Silva’s victory and drawing power, he might get another shot at the title, especially considering how controversial it was that he lost to Silva last summer.

The UFC has made things very difficult for Souza. The big criticism of his resume is that he hasn’t fought or beaten any top fighters. But he can only fight who the UFC schedules him to fight. The UFC did a disservice to Souza by scheduling him against Tim ‘The Barbarian’ Boetsch. Boetsch was coming off two knockout victories, but against nobodies and those wins coming after six losses in eight fights over a four-year span.

Souza should have probably fought Silva or Derek Brunson or even Robert Whittaker for a chance to add a significant victory on his resume but wasn’t afforded that opportunity. Instead, Silva got the chance to fight the more notable opponent and despite the controversy in his win, got to add a bigger win.

Souza was the third-ranked middleweight contender behind Romero and Rockhold heading into UFC 208. Silva was seventh. Silva’s victory over Brunson won’t vault him over Souza in the rankings, but we have seen Souza fall in the rankings after a victory over a blasé opponent too when another middleweight got a more significant victory the same night.

That is how Rockhold got the shot at Weidman over Souza when at UFC on Fox 15 in April 2015, Rockhold massacred the legendary Lyoto Machida while Souza quickly destroyed the always underwhelming Chris Camozzi.

Another thing working against Souza is his one loss to Romero in 2015. It was a split decision loss that could have easily gone his way but it is pretty shocking that his loss has stuck. Romero was suspended for an anti-doping violation after the right and the result of the fight was never disqualified or overturned. That loss to another contender is a dark mark on Souza’s record, but it shouldn’t be at all.

The UFC is going to have to choose who will be Bisping’s next opponent and Romero and Silva will certainly be in the conversation, but anybody other Souza would be a travesty. Souza has been jumped in the ranking by Rockhold, who immediately got a title fight after. Souza then saw both Bisping and Dan Henderson get title fights when they were ranked lower.

Souza is 37-years-old. He’s long deserved the title shot and not giving it to him would simply be the UFC artificially making contenders and avoiding getting certain guys in the spotlight as they have done in the past. It would be unacceptable.

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Corey Johns

Editor in Chief
You could say Corey was born to become a sports journalist. His father won a national championship coaching college soccer. His mother is a baseball fanatic who hasn't missed seeing an Orioles game since 1983 (literally, sometimes it's annoying). His great uncle was a big-time boxing promoter and his maternal grandfather was once a department head at the Baltimore Sun. Basically, sports and journalism run through his blood. He played just about every little league sports there was when he was a kid and was a multi-sport athlete in high school; even playing in the first-ever high school sanction Rugby game in the country. Eventually he retired from sports as an undefeated Maryland state Rugby champion as a high school senior. Perhaps lack of athletic talent has more to do with the retirement, but he will tell you that it more had to do with a great desire to jump right into media. Upon his graduation from University of Maryland, Baltimore County as a triple communications major, Corey started the So Much Sports network and has continued to grow his websites and continues to work to make them premier sports media outlets.

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