Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Team History, Fighter Stats, Biographies and News

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Keenan Cornelius
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Keenan Cornelius is a Hawaii born, famous Brazilian Jiu Jitsu competitor who gathered a tremendous fan base world wide since his lower belt grappling campaigns, where he won the “Jiu Jitsu Grand Slam”, being regarded as the most accomplished brown belt of all time. The talented fighter received his black belt from André Galvão on September 2013 though he started his career as a grappler training under BJ Penn and Lloyd Irvin.

Keenan Cornelius Jiu Jitsu

Full Name: Keenan Kai-James Cornelius

Nickname: n/a

Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie Reyson Gracie > Osvaldo Alves > Luis Dagmar > André Galvão > Keenan Cornelius

Main Achievements:

  • World Jiu Jitsu Champion (2013 brown, 2012 purple weight & absolute)
  • World No Gi Champion (2014 black, 2012 brown weight & absolute, 2011)
  • IBJJF Pro League Champion (2014)
  • Five Grappling ‘Round Robin’ Champion (2013)
  • BJJ Kumite Champion – Gi and No Gi (2012 brown)
  • Pan American Champion (2015, 2014 black, 2013 brown weight & absolute, 2012 purple weight & absolute)
  • European Open Champion (2013 brown weight & absolute, 2012 purple weight & absolute)
  • Brazilian National Champion (2012 purple weight & absolute)
  • ADCC Bronze Medallist (2013 weight & absolute)

Favourite Position/Technique:

Weight Division: 88kg/194lbs

Team/Association: Atos

Keenan Cornelius Merchandise

Keenan Cornelius Biography

Keenan Cornelius was born in Hawaii on the 25th of February, 1992. Keenan’s father, Tom Callos was a 6th degree Tae Kwon Do black belt who started teaching Cornelius the Korean striking art when he was just 4 years old, though his son was not interested in martial arts at that age and stopped training early on. He found Jiu Jitsu at the age of 14, again through his father. His dad was a big fan of mixed martial arts and had some basic grappling concepts, in fact, it was Mr Callos who introduced BJ Penn to BJJ a long time before Keenan ever got involved in the sport. Keenan’s father was a blue belt at the time and opened a small gym for his son to train with his friends once or twice per week, the kids (all big fans of the UFC) used the space more as an open mat as most of them had some wrestling experience from school. He was graded by Carlos Valente to green belt as Mr Valente passed by Keenan’s town to give a seminar and assessed his skill level as above white belt.

By the age of 15, Keenan started getting more interested in Jiu Jitsu and chose to visit a gym where Cassio Werneck coached. He enjoyed the classes but couldn’t deal with the commute every day, so only visited the academy two or three times per month. At Werneck’s gym, Cornelius met Andris Brunovskis, a kid (at the time) who would push young Keenan to further develop his skills.

When in his mid teens, Cornelius’ father took him for a weekend of training at the BJ Penn academy in Hilo. There he spent time with BJ (one of Keenan’s idols at the time) and his brother, Cornelius liked it so much he decided to enroll in a college in Hilo so he could train every day at the Penn’s gym.

Although Keenan did train for two years at the BJ Penn academy, these were times when BJ was still a very active competitor in the UFC and often wondered the country in training camps and other fighting related activities, which meant the gym didn’t have a full time black belt as a coach and on top of that, wasn’t very gi orientated. Keenan had a ton of talent and earned his purple belt under BJ after a silver medal at an important NAGA event. However, months later in a conversation with his friend Andris Brunovskis, he found out about Lloyd Irvin and his camp, where Brunovskis was now training. Andris spoke such good things about “Master” Lloyd’s training camp, Keenan became convinced this was the place for him, and so he left BJ Penn and started training with Irvin in Maryland.

At Lloyd Irvin’s academy, Keenan Cornelius’ raw talent flourished into one of the most talented fighters of his generation winning all major competitions on the IBJJF roster, back to back as a purple belt and a brown belt. Keenan’s career picked up quickly and he became somewhat of a celebrity among BJJ enthusiasts in the United States who saw Cornelius as the big US hope for a future shot at an absolute world title in the black belt division.

On 2013, after two of Lloyd Irvin’s students were accused of raping a fellow team mate of Lloyd Irvin’s academy in a barbaric affair, Lloyd Irvin himself came under scrutiny, when it was made public that Irvin to had been accused of gang rape in a case that dated back to 1990. In a continuation of the shocking case that came to light on January 2013, early in March of the same year a fellow team mate of Keenan named Jordon Shultz, revealed that one of the female students at TLI had come to him explaining how Lloyd Irvin tried to sexually molest her. The continuous stream of negative information surrounding TLI led a few of the main competitors of the team to abandon the organization, Keenan included.

Keenan moved on to the Atos team camp led by André Galvão who accepted the grappling prodigy with open arms. A few months later on September the 14th, 2013, Galvão awarded Cornelius his black belt.

Banner picture by Gracie Mag.

Keenan Cornelius Grappling Record

62 WINS
  • BY POINTS
    23 (37%)
  • BY ADVANTAGES
    4 (6%)
  • BY SUBMISSION
    31 (50%)
  • BY DECISION
    4 (6%)
  • BY PENALTIES
    0 (0%)
  • BY DQ
    0 (0%)

31 SUBMISSIONS WINS

#214eb8
Triangle
19
6
#86e620
Choke from back
16
5
#5AD3D1
Triangle armbar
10
3
#d1212a
Armbar
10
3
#fad11b
Heel Hook
10
3
#f58822
Arm in Ezekiel
6
2
#224aba
Darce choke
6
2
#ff9124
Mata leao
3
1
#bf1f6c
Omoplata
3
1
#22c9a5
Inverted armbar
3
1
#fad223
North South choke
3
1
#03861f
Kneebar
3
1
#039a1f
Inverted triangle
3
1
#03b41f
Verbal tap
3
1
31
(100%) SUBMISSIONS
16 LOSSES
  • BY POINTS
    11 (69%)
  • BY ADVANTAGES
    2 (13%)
  • BY SUBMISSION
    0 (0%)
  • BY DECISION
    2 (13%)
  • BY PENALTIES
    0 (0%)
  • BY DQ
    1 (6%)

0 SUBMISSION LOSSES

Keenan Cornelius Fight History

ID Opponent W/L Method Competition Weight Stage Year
4074Romulo BarralRomulo BarralLPointsADCC88KGSF2013
4116Roberto AbreuRoberto AbreuLPointsADCCABSSF2013
4300Alexander TransAlexander TransLPts: 3x2Pan AmericanABS1/4F2014
4560Marcus AlmeidaMarcus AlmeidaLPts: 2x2, AdvWorld Pro.ABSSF2014
4562Andre GalvaoAndre GalvaoLReferee DecisionWorld Pro.ABS3PLC2014
4590Braulio EstimaBraulio EstimaLPointsWorld Pro.94KGSF2014
4638Marcus AlmeidaMarcus AlmeidaLPts: 10x4World Champ.ABSSF2014
4737Diogo GamonalLDQWorld Champ.88KGRDS2014
4890Yuri SimoesYuri SimoesLPts: 4x0No Gi WorldsABSF2014
4984Leandro LoLeandro LoLPts: 6x2NYC Pro94KGF2014
5472Leo NogueiraLeo NogueiraLPts: 0x0, AdvPan AmericanABS1/4F2015
5792Victor EstimaVictor EstimaLReferee DecisionWorld Pro85KGSF2015
5853Alexander TransAlexander TransLPts: 2x0World ProABSSF2015
5855Leandro LoLeandro LoLPts: 4x2World ProABS3RD2015
5958Alexandre RibeiroAlexandre RibeiroDN/AMetamoris 6ABSSPF2015
6008Leandro LoLeandro LoLPts: 8x6World Champ.ABS1/4F2015
6112Tim SpriggsTim SpriggsLPts: 2x0World Champ.94KG1/4F2015
3551Lucas LeiteLucas LeiteWArmbarWorld ExpoABSSPF2013
4061Clark GracieClark GracieWPts: 4x2ADCC88KGRD12013
4069Oskar PiechotaWDarce chokeADCC88KG1/4F2013
4075Pablo PopovitchPablo PopovitchWVerbal tapADCC88KG3PLC2013
4108Erza LennonWHeel HookADCCABSRD12013
4114Oskar PiechotaWPts: 8x0ADCCABS1/4F2013
4118Dean ListerDean ListerWPointsADCCABS3PLC2013
4188Diego GamonalWTriangle armbarPro League94KGSF2013
4190Jackson SousaJackson SousaWPts: 2x0Pro League94KGF2013
4265Kevin CaseyWHeel hookMetamoris 3ABSSPF2014
4268Beneil DariushWHeel hookFIVE Rd RobinABSGP2013
4270Jackson SousaJackson SousaWReferee DecisionFIVE Rd RobinABSGP2013
4271James PuopoloJames PuopoloWMata leaoFIVE Rd RobinABSGP2013
4273Gary TononWPts: 14x0FIVE Rd RobinABSGP2013
4284UnknownWArm in EzekielPan AmericanABSRD22014
4292Luiz PanzaLuiz PanzaWPts: 8x6Pan AmericanABSRD32014
4362Sadayoshi KurimoriWChoke from backPan American88KGRD12014
4371Murilo SantanaMurilo SantanaWPts: 4x2Pan American88KG1/4F2014
4372Rodrigo PimpolhoWTriangle armbarPan American88KGSF2014
4416Stephen MartinezWArm in ezekielFIVE Cali. 1ABS1/4F2014
4418Lance GlynnWPointsFIVE Cali. 1ABSSF2014
4420Yuri SimoesYuri SimoesWPts: 4x0FIVE Cali. 1ABSF2014
4546R. EvangelistaR. EvangelistaWChoke from backWorld Pro.ABSRD12014
4559Braulio EstimaBraulio EstimaWPts: 2x2, AdvWorld Pro.ABS1/4F2014
4588Leonardo MacielWOmoplataWorld Pro.94KGRD12014
4589Jackson SousaJackson SousaWChoke from backWorld Pro.94KG1/4F2014
4610Carlos EduardoWReferee DecisionWorld Champ.ABSRD12014
4629Leandro LoLeandro LoWPts: 6x4World Champ.ABSRD 42014
4634Leo NogueiraLeo NogueiraWTriangleWorld Champ.ABS1/4F2014
4736Maciel TrindadeWTriangleWorld Champ.88KGRDS2014
4778Vinny MagalhaesVinny MagalhaesD---Metamoris 4ABSSPF2014
4806Osvaldo MoizinhoOsvaldo MoizinhoWTriangleSF OpenABSF2014
4835UnknownWInverted armbarAmerican Nat.88KG1/4F2014
4836Ignacio NetoWArmbarAmerican Nat.88KGSF2014
4838Eduardo TellesEduardo TellesWPts: 0x0, AdvAmerican Nat.88KGF2014
4881Abraham MarteAbraham MarteWPts: 2x2, AdvNo Gi WorldsABSRDS2014
4886James PuopoloJames PuopoloWPts: 8x2No Gi WorldsABS1/4F2014
4888Gary TononWPts: 23x2No Gi WorldsABSSF2014
4914Ricardo RezendeRicardo RezendeWNorth South chokeNo Gi Worlds88KGRD12014
4915Tanner RiceWKneebarNo Gi Worlds88KG1/4F2014
4919Murilo SantanaMurilo SantanaWPts: 2x0No Gi Worlds88KGSF2014
4921Arnaldo OliveiraWDarce chokeNo Gi Worlds88KGF2014
4961Roberto AlencarRoberto AlencarWPts: 12x0Pro League94KGSF2014
4963Jackson SousaJackson SousaWReferee DecisionPro League94KGF2014
5057Yuri SimoesYuri SimoesD---Metamoris 5ABSSPF2014
5136Dean ListerDean ListerWInverted trianglePolarisABSSPF2015
5459Elliot KellyWChoke from backPan AmericanABSRD22015
5464Tim SpriggsTim SpriggsWReferee DecisionPan AmericanABSRD32015
5557Jared LawtonWTrianglePan American88KGRD22015
5562Renato CardosoRenato CardosoWPts: 5x2Pan American88KG1/4F2015
5566Murilo SantanaMurilo SantanaWPts: 4x0Pan American88KGSF2015
5659Marcos SouzaMarcos SouzaWPts: 12x2Marianas OpenABS1/4F2015
5662Lucas LeiteLucas LeiteWPts: 4x2Marianas OpenABSSF2015
5663Mike FowlerMike FowlerWChoke from backMarianas OpenABSF2015
5773William DiasWPts: 6x4World Pro85KGRD12015
5782Victor SilverioVictor SilverioWArmbarWorld Pro85KGRD22015
5789Clark GracieClark GracieWPts: 7x0World Pro85KG1/4F2015
5793AJ SousaWPts: 3x0World Pro85KG3RD2015
5841Fabio GalebWTriangleWorld ProABSRD12015
5844Tarsis HumphreysTarsis HumphreysWPts: 2x0World ProABSRD22015
5850Felipe PenaFelipe PenaWPts: 2x2, AdvWorld ProABS1/4F2015
5997Carlos FariasWTriangleWorld Champ.ABSR12015
6109Alan RegisWTriangle armbarWorld Champ.94KG1/8F2015
6299Otavio SouzaWPts: 4x0FIVE SLABSSPF2015

Keenan Cornelius vs Gianni Grippo

Keenan Cornelius vs Morris Ayala

Keenan Cornelius vs João Miyao

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This post is also available in: Portuguese (Brazil)

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