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

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Lloyd Irvin

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Lloyd Irvin is the head coach of one of the most successful Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu schools in the United States. Through an “in your face” marketing strategy, which gave us lines such as: “The Grappling Blueprint” and “Get your BJJ Black Belt In 3 And A Half Years”, Irvin became a popular figure in the BJJ community, yet somewhat of an outcast during the early stages of his coaching career. With time, however, his methodology proved to be one of the best in the grappling world with many successful competitors coming out of the TLI academy, names such as JT Torres, James Harbison, and Mike Fowler. Lloyd’s team has also earned medals in some of the most established tournaments in the Jiu-Jitsu 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: Carlos GracieHelio GracieRickson GracieJorge Pereira > Leo Dalla > Lloyd Irvin

Main Achievements:

  • 1st Place IBJJF World No-Gi Championship (2008, 2012 Senior 1)
  • 1st Place Gracie Open Championship (1997)
  • 2nd Place CBJJ Brazilian Teams National (1999)

Favorite 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” returned.

After watching Royce Gracie perform in the early UFCs, Lloyd decided to come back to martial arts and jiu-jitsu in particular. There weren’t many places to train the Gracie art in his native state of Maryland and for that reason, Lloyd tried to move to California, where BJJ was already spreading. Unfortunately, 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 Welch. Lloyd immediately introduced himself to Brian who practiced BJJ with his friends (without proper instruction) twice a week. He invited Irvin to join them, an invitation he gladly accepted.

Shortly after, that same friend (Welch) also found out about a new BJJ gym that was being run in Rockville, MD. which was named Yamasaki/Dalla. Lloyd Irvin visited 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 class 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 spread the name of his Jiu Jitsu School. His aggressive advertising campaigns earned him many students, but they were highly frowned upon by the grappling community as fears that his “Americanized” approach to the sport could dilute it. Fortunately for BJJ, and against what many believed would happen, Lloyd Irvin managed to keep a high standard in his team, producing several quality students in different belt divisions. Grapplers like Mike Fowler, JT Torres and Ryan Hall.

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 than Lloyd Irvin himself, and professional MMA fighter Brandon Vera. Irvin made use of his self-defense experience to disarm one of the attackers, while the other fled the location. No one was hurt in the ordeal.

TLI Student Rape Case Allegation and Reactions

In January 2013, after two of Lloyd Irvin’s students (Nicholas Schultz and Matthew Maldonado) were arrested and charged with raping a fellow TLI female student/teammate, Irvin himself came under scrutiny when it was revealed that he had been accused of misconduct in the past. A case that dated back to 1990 (check link) of which he was absolved.

In response to the public interest and outrage towards Schultz and Maldonado, Irvin launched a PR campaign that appeared to be an attempt to suppress the negative publicity received, publishing at least 8 videos from a rape prevention seminar on his YouTube channel. His critics argued that this decision had been made as a way of pushing down the influx of negative coverage on Google’s search terms. There was also the release of a press release for that same seminar and a website launched under the domain name (address) “” gaining with this act at least one first page Google listing for the keyword “Lloyd Irvin Rape”.

At the time, these actions did not shake the majority of Irvin’s following – who rained down a plenty of support through social media, 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), along with many others. The public turmoil felt by the workgroup set the tone for most of the team’s senior competitors to abandon the squad, athletes such as Keenan Cornelious, JT Torres, Marcos Yemaso and Jordon Shultz.

Nicholas Schultz and Matthew Maldonado avoided a conviction. More details of the trial in Georgette Oden‘s blog (check here), a lawyer and a part-time BJJ practitioner.

Bernardo Faria BJJ Foundations


  • 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

      • Yazzy says:

        Just like ppl to pass judgement on a person they haven’t met about incidents they were not involved in. I’m a female student there and have NEVER see anything remotely close to the crap they say about him or his school.

        • Sam says:

          hi Yazzy…if you dont mind, may we have your full name so as others who comes across this ‘accusation’ of Master LI, can verify for themselves that you are indeed a female student there in TLI??? Tq…

        • ValidTruth says:

          Well if it didn’t happen to you it must not have happened.

  • 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.

  • 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!

  • 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!


  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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!

  • TommyKO says:

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

  • 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.

  • DDT says:

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

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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!

  • 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.

  • truth says:

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

  • disgusted says:

    1989 rapist

  • @seanflat says:

    It's falling apart at the seams.

  • jayjay says:

    He was a "BJJ World Champ Senior" Judo Senior nationals and nationals are not that hard to win he probably just double legged them and submitted them. Win is a win but doesn't mean he's good in judo good thing they changed the rules where you cannot grab the legs in judo. I believed this from the day I heard about LI I believe he paid off Leo Dalla to give him his black belt. It was all part of his plan. Mike Fowler didn't get his black belt in 4 years he trained in sub wrestling for a few years before. He just trained in the gi for 4 yrs thats still 7 yrs total.

  • Michael says:

    I don't think it is appropriate to have anything rape related on this page. Be it his students, or the case from 1990. 1990 is going back 26 years. Whether he did or not, it is not anyone's business, but those involved. People can change for the better, and often do. Grouping up to publicly shame someone further just isn't right. It can only cause harm. Scores of legendary athletes have made mistakes throughout time.

    People need to practice forgiveness. No one is perfect. Everyone makes mistakes. Just because you disagree with his coaching techniques, does not mean it is okay to publicly shame him. It's disappointing that regardless of what this man tries to do from here on out, he will always be shamed. Even if his intentions are pure. No one knows his intentions, but him. He does promote a TON of valuable information on his youtube channel. I mean a TON. He has clearly changed the lives (for the better) for a large number of his students. Just because a number of them left his team, does not mean the rest are brainwashed. Many students went to him with the goal of becoming a world champion. Many of them have succeeded whether with him, or after they left him.

    Regardless of this post, people will still say "but look at what happened with him and so-and-so". It doesn't matter! It isn't your business. Let those involved figure it out. Again, as a society, public shaming is just not beneficial for anyone. People who make major mistakes punish themselves the most. They do not need to hear it from the rest of the world every single day.

  • Lancelot says:

    Rapist, nobody.

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