Avoiding Iowa McDojo's


Purple Belt
Mar 29, 2006
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I'm considering moving to Cedar Rapids, IA to further my career. Unfortunately, I haven't found any reputable looking BJJ or MMA schools there while surfing the the world wide web. While I know G&E primarily discusses G&E, I spend most of my time in this forum so I'm helping you could help.

I trained with Orlando ATT off-and-on for the last year and would like to train again with much greater regularity once my work schedule stabilizes. Does anyone know of any reputable schools in the Cedar Rapids area or any schools that should be avoided? MFS in Bettendorf is way too far to drive and I'm not sure how long the drive is to Iowa City to train with the Hawkeyes.

The Underground suggested Team Hard Drive but they just appear be a group of grapplers that practice without any real direction. Team leader Keoni Koch admits that they primarily "put in a good time in the gym and transition it to the cage" without the guidance of a "certified black belt that speaks their 'R's' as an 'H'."

My main goal is to advance in BJJ and have something to show for it in form and by belt. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
I believe team Hard Drive is the only real established team in Cedar Rapids, as far as mma. If you are wanting to avoid them, Iowa city is only about a 25-35 minute drive from Cedar Rapids. I have had two mma fights against guys from Hard Drive and from experience they are not a very BJJ driven team. I am not sure about pure BJJ training though, I am sure there has to be somewhere in Cedar Rapids to train.
In your experience, how does Team Hard Drive collectively fight? Do they ever go to the ground or do they just try to stand?
My personal review of them; Team Hard Drive overall as a team has very good wrestling, good stand up, sub par BJJ, and excellent cardio. They have a couple of very good pro fighters. I don't know how good their coach, Dave, is but he is a very nice, easy to get along with guy.
Chime In:

If they have good professional fighters, it couldn't be a mcdojo.
Hard Drive has Jesse Lennox, current mainstream mma MW and WW champion, best fighter I have seen in fight in this area, hands down. He is giving up his MW belt so his friend and teammate Tom Grubb can fight for the MW belt. Tom is 7-0 and is also a very good fighter out of Hard Drive. I have heard rumors that Jesse is leaving Hard Drive to work with Militich but his bio still says he is training with Hard Drive. Check out mainstream mma's site to see some of the local fighters and you can check out where they fight out of, Joe Pearson is current LW champion but he fights out of Militich.

Hard Drive is such a poor camp, Erik Koch triangled Joe Pearson for the LW title and Tom Grubb won the 185 title by arm triangle. Terrible Jiu Jitsu, dont train there.
anyone have contact info for team hard drive? pm me please
I'm wondering what exactly your career is if going to IOWA is going to further it.

Team USB > hard drive.
I know this is an old thread but Team Hard Drive is located on 5th Ave on the SE side of town at the old boxing gym. You'd have to go down by Mercy and go up 5th ave from there because its a One way street. I'm sure you've found it by now though I'm actually gonna go in there today and see about signing up. They do have good fighters coming out of there and they make by with what they got. Ive been in there before and met one of the guys and they seemed really cool.