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Lloyd Irvin

Lloyd Irvin is the head coach of one of the most successful Brazilian Jiu Jitsu schools in the United States. Through his often brash marketing campaigns that gave us lines like: “The Grappling Blueprint” and “Get your BJJ black belt in 3 and a half years”, Irvin managed to become a recognizable figure within the BJJ community, yet somewhat of an outcast. In any case, Lloyd Irvin has earned his place in Jiu Jitsu having successfully raised the games of tremendous competitors such as JT Torres, James Harbison and Mike Fowler (to name a few). His team has also medaled in some of the most established tournaments in the world, being the first American academy in BJJ history to truly and consistently make a mark in the sport.

Lloyd Irvin Jiu Jitsu

Full Name: Lloyd Irvin

Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos GracieHelio GracieRickson Gracie > Jorge Pereira > Leonardo Dalla > Lloyd Irvin

Main Achievements (BJJ):

  • 2x World Nogi Champion (2008, 2012 Senior 1)
  • Gracie Open Champion (1997)
  • Brazilian National Teams 2nd Place (1999)

Favourite Position/Technique: N/A

Weight Division: Peso Pesado (94kg/207lbs)

Team/Association: Lloyd Irvin Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

Lloyd Irvin Biography

Loyd Irvin was introduced to Martial Arts at the tender age of 3, being initiated through Tae Kwon Do. As he progressed in life, he also wrestled (which he started in 1983). By the time he hit college, however, he left martial arts aside to move on to more traditional sports. It was only years later, after watching UFC I that the martial arts bug started growing again within Lloyd.

After watching Royce Gracie perform in the early UFC’s, Lloyd Irvin decided to come back to martial arts, though there weren’t many places to train jiu jitsu in his native Maryland. Lloyd tried to move to California, where BJJ was already spreading, but the exorbitant prices of the local clubs led him to give up on the idea. Irvin returned to Maryland and there, at a local Karate tournament, he met a man wearing a Gracie Jiu Jitsu t-shirt who would change his life forever, his name was Brian Welsh. Lloyd immediately established contact with Brian who practiced BJJ with his friends (without proper instruction) twice a week, and invited Irvin to join him, an invitation he gladly accepted.

Shortly after, that same friend (Brian Welsh) also found out about a new BJJ gym that was being run in Rockville, MD. which was named Yamasaki/Dalla. Lloyd Irvin immediately travelled to this gym, where he met and took the class of Mario Yamasaki and Leo Dalla. Irvin enjoyed the class so much, he enrolled that same day and paid the $100 necessary for the unlimited classe package, he was 26 years old at the time.

Within a month Lloyd Irvin received his blue belt, much due to his physical attributes and his observant eye. However, not long after that his instructor Leonardo Dalla left for Brazil permanently. From there on, Lloyd Irvin trained mainly by himself, he also opened a BJJ school at that time using his students for sparring. His progress was unbelievably quick, especially for someone who did not have any particular full time supervision. he eventually received his black belt while on one of his travels to Brazil by the hands of Leo Dalla.

Upon his return to the United States, Lloyd Irvin made better use of his marketing degree at Blue State University and released a series of advertising campaigns to divulge the Jiu Jitsu School. His aggressive campaigns earned him many students, but they were highly frowned upon by the grappling community as fears that his “Americanized” approach to the sport might dilute it. Fortunately for BJJ, and against what many believed would happen Lloyd Irvin managed to keep the standard of his team, and produced several quality students in different belt divisions. Fighters like Mike Fowler, JT Torres and even Ryan Hall (who would later part ways with Lloyd Irvin).

In 2001 Lloyd Irvin had a serious neck injury while competing which took him out of the mats for 13 months. Many doctors believed he would never return to the sport, but through healthy living and the necessary amount of luck, Irvin returned to the mats after the long yet necessary recovering period.

In 2008 another breathtaking moment in Irvin’s life as two armed men entered Lloyd’s residence to rob it, taking his family hostage. In that same house however were none other then Lloyd Irvin himself, and professional MMA fighter Brandon Vera. Irvin made use of his self defense experience (Irvin is a black belt also in Judo and Combat Sambo) managed to disarm one of the attackers, while the other fled the location. No one was hurt in the ordeal.

Lloyd Irvin’s Rape Case and Reactions

On 2013, after two of Lloyd Irvin’s students (Nicholas Schultz and Matthew Maldonado) 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 (check link). To make matters worst, in response to the public interest and outrage on the rape allegations, Lloyd immediately went on a PR overload to try and suppress the negative publicity he was receiving, publishing at least 8 videos from his rape prevention seminar on his YouTube channel in the hopes of pushing out the negative buzz. He also issued a press release for the same seminar and launched a website under the domain name (address) “lloydirvinrape.com” gaining with this at least one Google listing for the keyword “Lloyd Irvin Rape”. Although this shameless way of dealing with the matter didn’t shake many of Irvin’s following, which rained down a ton of support on his Facebook page, some did speak out against the worshiped instructor, including the father of one of Irvin’s top students (Keenan Cornelius) and an old student of Lloyd, Ryan Hall (check Ryan Hall’s response here), among many others.

In a continuation of the shocking case that came to light on January 2013, early in March of the same year a Team Lloyd Irvin competitor, 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, by using his team leader status to put the girl through “tests” using the infamous phrase “how bad do you want to be a world champion”, this shone light into possible multiple cases of sexual abuse to many more female students, which led most of the senior competitors of the team to abandon the academy, fighters such as Keenan Cornelious, JT Torres, Marcos Yemaso and Jordon Shultz himself.

In the end Nicholas Schultz and Matthew Maldonado supported by Lloyd Irvin strong team of attorneys managed to run free of what looked like a straight forward conviction with video evidence (check more details of the trial in Georgette Oden‘s blog, a lawyer and part time BJJ practitioner) , a testament to the weakness in the American Justice Legal system.

This post is also available in: Portuguese (Brazil)

Comments (25)

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  1. Jeffro says:

    Lloyd Irvin walks the walks talks the talk. No doubt he is a warrior!

    • Jim Smythe says:

      Walks the walk of a rapist and predator? Talks the talk of a rapist and predator? No doubt, he is a sexual predator

  2. Biff says:

    Lloyd timelines and stories of his progression are highly fictionalized, however no one can dispute his ability as a coach. Although not a great competitor many high level Trappists claim to have been “spanked” on the mats rolling with him. Amazing considering he trains sporadically, follows a crappy diet and does little fitness conditioning (but he’s a super strong and freakishly conditioned athlete!). An amazing guy for sure.

  3. Donnie Pillow says:

    No one can disparage his ability as a competitor or coach. His students are a testament to his legitimacy. Though his competition days are likely behind him but his legacy as a coach is unlimited! Much respect to the man who just won't quit!

  4. jiujitsukingdom says:

    Come on now, Lloyd Irvin is a Master Coach and Fighter! It is funny how people only give him credit as a coach when he is also a multiple time national champion in Judo, Sambo and a World Champion in BJJ!

    Must be tough to be a world class fighter by most people's standards heh? Also if world class competitors are saying he's tough on the mats and they mow through other champions at ease that must say soemthing about the man's abilities!

    And no I am not affiliated with Team Lloyd Irvin, I just respect the man and his accomplishments in the BJJ and Grappling community!

    Felipe

  5. Qjitjitsu says:

    Lloyd Irvin is clearly and objectively one of the best coaches and envoys for BJJ in the world. He is highly heralded throughout the world for his knowledge, curriculum and ability to take ones BJJ to the next level.

  6. John Gage says:

    I wish one of the armed thugs who took his family hostage would have gotten hurt. I know that may sound bad, but I'm so sick and tired of the "darkside" getting away with things. These guys walked into the wrong house, lol. They should have been roughed up a bit, so it would have sent a message to other thugs. The message being, "get a job and quit thinking that you can "take", when others have to work for it". Damn, I really wish Lloyd would have opened up the can on these maggots of society.

  7. Rod Iron says:

    I heard that he knew the thug that got away – that when he saw who it was, he froze. Screwed him up big time.

    More interesting than that, I heard that Lloyd is planning a come back (high protein diet intact). Which explains why he has been laying low and spreading rumors of his being weak. It’s the only way to draw-in the real slime that pollutes the martial arts community. I mean, if he comes out at 100% the ones he really wants to pound on will only cower and continue to send their cronies. By playing weak, the weak will see him as an easy target and come-in close for the glory of beating The Great One.

    It’s brilliant and if it works I’m sure we will see some of that old school style that made him famous. Stay tuned!

  8. TommyKO says:

    He didn't go to Blue State University, he went to Bowie State University in Bowie, MD and was a Que dog.

  9. oldbean says:

    It seem to me that Lloyd Irvin is a used car saleman. I mean let look at the time line for Mr. Irvin rise to the rank of "great one." In one month you got your blue belt? Even if you train everyday like a mad man for one month there is no way you could ever gain the amount of knowledge needed to go from white to blue. Impossible I say. Now on to being a top coach. I have to say that I dont think that is true, because unless he is travelling all over his country or the world gaining knowledge from the top black belts there is no way he can be a top black belt. To be the best you have to know what the best know and thats in everything we do as human. And to say that I learn all of this on my own and now Im the best defies all logic.

  10. DDT says:

    I trained there while I was in the area for four months. It's a nicely run facility.

  11. Anon says:

    This article needs revision. JT Torres was not a Lloyd Irvin student, he was a highly successful brown belt under Louis Vintaloro in fair lawn no before being recruited by Lloyd and shortly (just a few months) gave jt the black belt, but Jt was already at a black belt level.

  12. studentofthegame says:

    Well Master Lloyd will be competing this year in the no gi worlds, so yall can check him out there. Far as his studenst they speak for themselves far as nonbrazilian BJJ fighters they are the best the business and check his linage out people…dang. He didnt give the belts to himself so if you disregard him you have to disregard the whole linage and that would really make people think you are crazy.

  13. ricardo mercado says:

    Plain and simple. I used to train with master Lloyd and the man is dangerous but humble. Y'all idiots got balls, small…….but at least y'all got em. Whoever doubts the man. Go and see what' up. I know for a fact you'll eat your words. But he's so cool he'll explain to you what to work on and doesn't stop you from evolving.
    Talk is cheap, running an academy is a business. Let date man do his thing. That's why his team is always…….. n I mean always on top. I've trained with teams in Georgia and Florida……. and I'm happy to say . Master Lloyd promotes himself and handles business in the office, and on the Matt.
    With every successful man there's a pack of haters. Team Lloyd Irvin baby!

  14. nyne says:

    Lloyd Irvin just won gold in no-gi worlds and the rest of his team that was competing brought home ANOTHER pile of gold medals as well. Lloyd Irvin is no joke and his team and facilities are top notch. I don't train there but I would if I lived near there for SURE. Look up Medal Chasers on youtube and reflect upon how inferior your bjj program is compared to the show he's running. You guys talk so much crap but it's all jealousy.

  15. truth says:

    please ad that lloyd gang raped a 17 year old in 1990. it's unbelievable this is not apart of his bio!

  16. disgusted says:

    1989 rapist

  17. @seanflat says:

    It's falling apart at the seams.

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