Next Saturday’s Shamrock FC: Blitzkrieg preliminary card will see a amateur bout as Rodney Cotton will look for his fifth amateur win as he will face Edrick Dillard.

The fight path for Cotton (4-1) into mixed martial arts started like most fighters as he was a fan of the sport and decided to start training in the various disciplines of the sport. He started by doing kickboxing and one day while surfing the internet, he came across a link for Watson Martial arts and he has not left that gym since walking into it.

What about mixed martial arts intrigues Cotton? Is it the stand up or the ground aspect of the sport? While he enjoys all aspects of this sport, it’s the mental side of the game that intrigues him.

“To me, it’s about the mental part of it,” Cotton told The MMA Report. “How you can mentally test yourself. Yes, you have cornerman but at the end of the day, it’s all about what you do when you are under pressure. When everybody is watching you and you have to perform at a top notch. That is what is very intriguing to me about the sport.”

When it comes to the actual fight, how does Cotton view the competition? Does he come from the mindset of trying to game plan for every aspect of the fight or does he believe in having multiple options available to use in the fight?

“Most fighters say that they have a game plan and the game plan is like step by step,” Cotton explained. “I don’t really try to do that. I have more ideas of what I want to do and just have scenarios. If it stays on the feet, I want to do most of this. If it goes to the ground, I am mainly go for this. Also, keep it in the back of my mind to improv while I am out there.”

When Cotton steps into the cage next Saturday night, he will be approaching nearly three years in the sport as he took his fight fight back in 2013. His approach to the sport has changed over the past two years as he use to think constantly about the fight game. Now, he knows he has to get his mind off the fight game to make sure he is the best fighter he can be on fight night.

He will look to be the best fighter he can be next Saturday night when he takes on Dillard at the Lumiere Casino in St. Louis. With this being an amateur fight, sometimes it can be tough to find footage of your opponent. However, Cotton was able to watch some footage of Dillard and he has a good idea of what he will be facing next week.

“What I say was a guy who wants to just wrestle. I did not see him really try to strike and engage in that. As far as the ground goes, it seemed like he did not want to do any submissions. Just wrestle and hold people down.”

If Cotton is able to get the victory against Dillard, it will be his third straight victory and turning professional could be coming in the next couple of fights. Ultimately, that is a decision he will make with his head coach and Cotton could end up being someone in the midwest regional scene to keep an eye on.