USBJJ: Midwest Jiu Jitsu Championships

Until pretty recently the MidWest was a bit of a no mans land for grappling tournaments.  Sure the IBJJF comes to Chicago a few times a year but other than that it’s mostly small events with a few NAGA tournaments thrown in for good measure.  Next week USBJJ will be running their Midwest NoGi Grappling Championship in Milwaukee, WI.  The tournament offers divisions for all levels and age brackets as well as a $500 cash prize to the winner of the Pro Absolute bracket.  We sat down with the folks at USBJJ to get a little more information on them and what we can expect at the tournament on July 27th.


1.  What makes USBJJ tournaments stand out from others in the area?
We are working hard to create something more than your standard Jiu Jitsu tournament, we want to create a Jiu Jitsu experience. To do this we are going the extra mile to create this experience for competitors and spectators.
Above and beyond the features you come to expect at a higher end tournament: Electronic bracketing, big top-quality medals, team trophy, cash payout for absolute, etc. We hired two professional photographers and a videographer to capture high-quality action shots of all the competitors matches. These will be made available for free after the tournament.
Additionally, the best photo, video & most active user posting content on the #USBJJLive hashtag on twitter, instagram or facebook will win a $100 gift card to BJJ LIFE clothing. This is available for competitors or spectators to win.
Lastly, we have a wide range of brackets including kids, teens, masters and then the standard men’s, women’s and $500 cash prize absolute.


2.  What can the competitors expect for their tournament experience?
Being long time competitors ourselves, our two pet-peeves with tournaments are poor bracketing organization and unqualified refs. To ensure this does not happen at our tournament, we will be using an electronic bracketing system that will make bracketing and the flow of the tournament extremely smooth.
We are bringing in Jonatas Novaes (BJJ Black Belt & world champ) who is a certified IBJJF referee to run our ref team. Additionally, most of our other referees are brown or black belts with years of experience.

3.  Are their going to be booths, sponsors, etc… ?
A number of our sponsors will have booths there to showcase their products and have equipment and apparel for sale. Plan on bringing some extra cash to the tournament to pick-up some goodies and support our sponsors for helping the Jiu Jitsu community.

4.  What are some basic details for the potential competitors to know?
All the details on the tournament can be found on our website (, but for a quick recap, here’s the lowdown on all the details for competitors:

  • Bayview High School in Milwaukee on July 27th
  • 1.5 hour straight shot north of Chicago
  • Pre-Registration ends 7/21/13
  • Free t-shirts and $10 discount
  • Our absolute division boasts a $500 prize for first place
  • We have mens, womens, kids, teens and masters divisions
  • Friday night weigh-ins for all divisions are from 6-7:30 at Bayview High School
  • We are following IBJJF rules
  • Only exception is tie matches will be decided by ref based on aggression, not pure advantages (although advantages and aggression have a high correlation)
  • Team award for team who has the most overall competitor points
  • Standard NOGI clothing is acceptable. There are no restrictions on colors for rank.

5.  What kind of a turn out are you expecting?
This is our first tournament in the Midwest so we don’t have a benchmark to go against. We don’t want it to be a mega-sized event where you’re there for 8 hours because of lack of organization. Instead, we would rather have a small-medium sized tournament that run extremely efficiently and delivers an amazing experience to all the competitors and spectators.

6.  Anything else you can think of?
I’d just give everyone a little bump to check out our website for all the detailed information and see our twitter (@USBJJ) or Facebook because we are very transparent and are posting pictures of lots of the tournament medals, signs, awards, etc.

Also, tell people to avoid the lines by pre-registering (and they get $10 discount and free tee). But must pre-register on by Sunday July 21st.

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