By Ryan Horton
Following a Sept. 18 car accident that left Oklahoma City police officer and Ultimate Fighting Championship featherweight Matt Grice hospitalized the local community was quick to show their support of the Harrah man.
A mixed martial arts event, with all proceeds going to the Grice family, has been scheduled for Oct. 19 at Harrah High School.
Harrah High School head wrestling coach Bryan Miller said as soon as he heard about the accident he wanted to do something to help, and coordinating an MMA event to help the Grice family was something he could accomplish.
“Whenever I found out what happened I wanted to try to help in any way I could, and I felt this was the best way I could help. As much as he has given back to the community and our wrestling program I figured it would be our duty to give back what we can,” said Miller.
Grice has a 15-5 professional mixed martial art record, but before entering MMA he was considered one of the state’s greatest high school wrestlers when he represented Harrah on the mat.
A four-time state high school wrestling champion Grice received a scholarship from the University of Oklahoma, and later returned to help the Panthers as an assistant coach.
“Before I was coaching here he was an assistant coach. While I’ve been here he has came in the room and helped us out a lot, he has helped us run our previous MMA events and anytime we needed help he has done whatever he could do. He has a crazy schedule having a family, running a gym, being a police officer and a professional fighter and he always makes time to give back to the community,” said Miller.
Miller contacted the Oklahoma Boxing Commission looking for help getting a fundraiser together, and that’s exactly what he received.
“The boxing commission contacted me about putting on an event for Matt, and I was all in,” said Oklahoma Fighting Championship promoter Chad Haskett. “Every penny that’s raised will go to the Grice family. We are in the process of getting a card together, and looking for fighters who are willing to donate their purse.”
The event has been slated for 6 p.m. Oct. 19 at the HHS gym.
“The event is scheduled for the same night Matt was supposed to fight in the UFC as a symbolic tribute. Anything is possible, hopefully in six months he will be recovered and he and his family can decide what they want to do with the funds raised,” said Miller.
Tickets are on sale now costing $20 for general admission and $30 for floor seating. Tickets are available for presale at www.Ticketstorm.com or at the door. Cage side table seating is limited and priced at $500 for a table for 10.
For more information about joining the card, volunteering, sponsoring the event or purchasing a cage side table call 405-412-6155.