|Birth name||Dean Muhtadi|
July 17, 1986 |
|Professional wrestling career|
|Ring name(s)||Mojo Rawley|
|Billed height||6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)|
|Billed weight||272 lb (123 kg)|
|Billed from||Alexandria, Virginia|
|Trained by||WWE NXT|
|Debut||May 29, 2013|
Dean Muhtadi (born July 17, 1986) is an American professional wrestler. He is currently employed by the professional wrestling promotion WWE, where he wrestles in its developmental territory, WWE NXT, under the ring name Mojo Rawley.
Muhtadi is a former American football defensive tackle who was most recently on the Arizona Cardinals of the National Football League. Muhtadi was signed by the Green Bay Packers as an undrafted free agent in 2009. He played college football for the Christopher Newport Captains, and upon transferring, for the Maryland Terrapins.
- 1 Football career
- 2 Professional wrestling career
- 3 Personal life
- 4 In wrestling
- 5 References
- 6 External links
|Date of birth:July 17, 1986|
|Place of birth: Alexandria, Virginia|
|College: Maryland, Christopher Newport|
|Undrafted in 2009|
|No regular season or postseason appearances|
At T.C. Williams High School in Alexandria, Virginia, Muhtadi was a four-year starter along the defensive and offensive lines. He also was the team's punter during his last two years. He finished second in the Patriot District in sacks in 2004, and broke the school's all-time punting record with a long of 76 yards against West Springfield High School.
Throughout his high school playing career, Muhtadi started games at defensive tackle, end, nose guard, and outside linebacker on defense, and at offensive tackle, guard, center, and tight end on offense. He was also the team’s punter and kicker. Often his position changed every week to shadow the opposing team’s best player. Muhtadi was an All-District choice at both defensive line and punter, as well as the team MVP.
In 2004 and 2005, Muhtadi played college football for Division III Christopher Newport University in Newport News, Virginia. After redshirting his freshman season due to mononucleosis, Muhtadi started at defensive tackle for the Captains his sophomore year. He then transferred to the University of Maryland in the Atlantic Coast Conference where he earned a scholarship, and a starting position. In 2008, Muhtadi finished third in sacks for the Terrapins. He was also only the second player in the past 15 years to play all defensive line positions in a game for the Terrapins.
|Wt||40 yd||20 ss||3-cone||Vert||BP||Broad Jump|
Muhtadi currently owns several of Maryland's all-time records for strength and speed: 225 lb. Bench Press Test: 36 repetitions (Team Record) 40 Yard Dash: 4.78 (Defensive Tackle Record) Power Clean: 390 lbs. (Defensive Line Record) Vertical Jump: 36.5 inches (Defensive Line Record) Pro Agility (20 yard shuttle): 4.37 (Defensive Line Record)
In his three years at Maryland, Muhtadi was one of the top student-athletes in the Atlantic Coast Conference. In 2008, Muhtadi won the Jim and Pat Thacker Postgraduate Scholarship for being one of the top student-athletes in the ACC for all sports and all schools. In 2007 and 2008, Muhtadi also received the George Boutselis Memorial Award for being the letterman with the highest academic average on the football team. He also was named to the All-ACC Academic Team in 2008 and was a three-time Dean’s List student. Muhtadi received his MBA from the Smith Business School MBA Program.
At Christopher Newport, Muhtadi was awarded a full academic scholarship. While also being named the top student-athlete on the team, Muhtadi was a two-time All USA South Athletic Conference All-Academic Selection, a member of the President’s Leadership Program, Honors Program, and Student Executive Board of the Business School. He also received the Edith McMurran Honors Scholarship for the student who best demonstrates the balance of leadership, public service, and academic excellence.
Professional football career
Green Bay Packers
Muhtadi was signed by the Green Bay Packers as an undrafted free agent following the 2009 NFL Draft on May 4, 2009. He earned his contract on a tryout basis by being one of three players signed out of 25 trying out for the team. Muhtadi was the only player on the depth chart listed at both Defensive End and Nose Guard. On September 3, 2009 against the Tennessee Titans, Muhtadi finished third on the team with 5 tackles, 1 for loss, and a forced fumble in a spectacular performance. Toward the end of the game, Muhtadi forced a fumble to save a touchdown. He was waived on September 4, 2009.
Muhtadi was signed by the Arizona Cardinals on January 20, 2010 to play defensive line. He was given the nickname "The Iron Sheik" by coaches and teammates due to his freakish strength as he was the strongest player on the team. Muhtadi became training partners with Darnell Dockett as the two competed against one another every day in workouts. He was injured during training camp and placed on Injured Reserve.
Professional wrestling career
Muhtadi spent 18 months rehabilitating from the injury he sustained with the Arizona Cardinals. During his recovery, he had received offers to return to the NFL and to work in financial services, but instead opted to become a professional wrestler with WWE by August 2012. He joined WWE's developmental territory WWE NXT and he adopted the ring name "Mojo Rawley".
Rawley made his television debut on the May 29, 2013 episode of NXT, competing in a battle royal that was won by Bo Dallas. On the October 9 episode of NXT, Rawley adopted a high-energy character based on the concept of "staying hyped"; Rawley explained that if getting hyped allowed superhuman achievements, he would take it one level higher by staying hyped. At NXT Arrival, Rawley defeated CJ Parker. After ArRival Rawley went on an unbeaten streak defeating the likes of CJ Parker in a rematch, Sylvester Lefort, Oliver Gray and others. He also took part in a Battle Royal to determine the new number one contender where he made it to the final seven before being eliminated by Jason Jordan. At NXT Takeover on May 29, 2014, Rusev beat down Rawley.
Muhtadi is the son of T.J. Muhtadi and Maria Muhtadi-Roach. He has one older sibling (Lena) and three younger siblings (Casey, Tammy and Garrett).
- Fishman, Scott (July 18, 2013). "Football players Baron Corbin, Mojo Rawley surprisingly reunite at WWE NXT". The Miami Herald. The McClatchy Company. Retrieved 2014-01-16.
- "Mojo Rawley". WWE.com. WWE. Retrieved 2014-01-16.
- Saxton, Byron (October 16, 2013). "Staying hyped: Mojo Rawley makes his NXT debut". WWE.com. WWE. Retrieved 2014-01-16.
- Bedard, Greg A. (May 4, 2009). "Packers sign Maryland DT Dean Muhtadi". Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. Retrieved 2010-01-21.
- Scherer, Dave. "New WWE signings". PWInsider. Retrieved 9 March 2014.
- Jason Namako. "WWE NXT results - 5/30/13 (#1 Contender battle royal)". Wrestleview. Retrieved 9 March 2014.
- James, Justin. "James's WWE NXT report 1/15 - Week 81: Triple H makes announcement, Kofi vs. Rusev test match, NXT champ in action, Neville/PAC; Overall Reax". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 9 March 2014.
- "Staying hyped: Mojo Rawley makes his NXT debut (page 2)". WWE. Retrieved 9 March 2014.
- Howell, Nolan. "NXT ArRival: Neville reaches for the gold". SLAM! Sports: Wrestling. Canadian Online Explorer. Retrieved 6 March 2014.
- Howell, Nolan (May 29, 2014). "Neville tops Kidd at NXT Takeover". Canoe.ca. Québecor Média. Retrieved May 30, 2014.
- James, Justin (December 12, 2013). "James's WWE NXT Report 12/11". PWTorch.com. Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 2014-01-16.
- James, Justin (January 16, 2014). "James's WWE NXT Report 1/15". PWTorch.com. Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 2014-01-16.
- Mark Giannotto. Dean Muhtadi working hard at a shot at Arizona Cardinal's Roster., "The Washington Post", July 20, 2010.
- Darren Urban. Happy To Be Here, Arizona Cardinals Website, June 3, 2010.
- Mark Giannotto, Muhtadi’s on a Mission; T.C. grad, NFL rookie looks to beat the odds at Packers training camp, Sports Connection, July 29, 2009.
- Mike Spofford. Former Terps Become Teammates Again, Green Bay Packers Website.
- Maryland Terrapins football bio