LUCEDALE, MS (WLOX) - Matt Fryfogle competes to win and he's ready to face 15 of the world's best powerlifters. It took him only 18 months to distinguish himself as a world-class competitor.
Fryfogle said, "It makes me feel good, makes me feel humble because I know a lot of the guys I'm competing against put in a lot of work and a lot of time. So, I'm humble to be there within a year-and-a-half."
Fryfogel began his powerlifting journey when he was told he should train with powerlifting legend Joe Ladnier who owns a fitness center in Hurley. He had never powerlifted before, but after one week of training, Ladnier suggested Matt was capable of competing in his first powerlifting meet.
"I went and won the meet and it qualified me for Las Vegas at the World Championship, "stated Fryfogle. "I went to the World Championship and won."
From there Fryfogle captured the Iron Man Classic in Gatlinburg, Tennessee in March and qualified for the Big Dog World Championship in Australia.
Fryfogle said, "It's no federation, no weight class, just the heaviest bar on the weight wins and I'm ranked I think ninth or tenth out of the top 16. They say it's the biggest meet ever in powerlifting."
Joe Ladnier said, "The very first day I saw his talent. His dedication, his drive, his determination. He's been a great asset to the gym and to me as a training partner."
The Fryfogle family in Lucedale has a long history of sports success, especially in football. Matt was a big fullback at George County High School , shown here in 2000 and earned a scholarship to Gulf Coast Community College and later at Arkansas-Monticello. Matt's brother Trey played wide receiver at Ole Miss and Trey's son, Tyrese is a standout receiver on the 2016 George County Rebels football team.
"Our grandpa and dad had us out in the yard playing football, very competitive, "Fryfogle said. "We hate to lose and I think that's got a lot to do with it."