Jeff Cobb is a former NEVER Openweight Champion in NJPW and ROH World Television Champion in Ring of Honor.
However, before stepping foot into either a NJPW or ROH ring, Cobb attended a WWE Tryout in 2014, hoping to make it in Vince McMahon’s company.
Speaking to Chris Jericho on the Talk Is Jericho podcast, Cobb recalled attending the tryout five years ago with some current and former WWE superstars.
Cobb also spoke of his disappointment at being dubbed an “independent wrestler” rather than an “athlete” at the trial, despite having competed in the 2004 Olympic Games:
“Rich Swann, No Way Jose, and Montez Ford were all in my [tryout] class,”When I was doing a check-in, I looked down and saw a clipboard and it had ‘Athletes’ and “Indie Workers.’ I was like, ‘Come on. I was in the Olympics.’ I was under Indie workers. The former football players and CrossFit guys were under athletes. You’d be surprised how many former NFL players can’t do a forward roll.”
The former amateur wrestler revealed to Jericho that while he was not offered a developmental contract in 2014, he was offered a spot on Tough Enough the following year. The big man explained why he turned down the opportunity:
“I was offered Tough Enough. If I was in my 20s, Tough Enough, sure. But there’s only three or four that came through that system. I just didn’t want to fall into that.”
Tough Enough in 2015, the season Cobb would likely have been involved in, produced two current main roster stars in Sonya Deville and Mandy Rose, as well as current NXT North American Champion Velveteen Dream.
It is clear that Jeff Cobb has still made despite rejecting WWE’s approach to appear on the show.
Thanks to Fightful for the transcription.
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