If you’ve ever felt like you literally can’t get enough jiu-jitsu in your life or that you just don’t have enough friends who can understand your need to constantly talk about submissions, competitions, and BJJ culture as a whole, you may want to consider giving The 5th Stripe podcast a listen.
Headed by two-time No-Gi World Champion Brandon Mullins, 5th Stripe offers everything you’d want in a jiu-jitsu podcast, plus a bit more. The staff is eclectic and showcases the diverse nature of jiu-jitsu. Their ranks range from blue to black belt. One is a former rap producer. Another is a former NASA employee-turned-comedian.
Third Coast Grappling promoter Ryan McGuire is one of the sponsors of the podcast and works more “behind the scenes” with Zach Marshall. “Between the staff, I believe there’s almost 50 years of BJJ between them with some very unique life experiences. The blend of quick wit, BJJ knowledge, and a laid back format makes for a fun and entertaining listen,” says McGuire.
Those who have spent seemingly forever at a single belt level can probably relate to the podcast’s tongue-in-cheek title. One of the hosts, Oliver, described its origins as stemming from a joke that came out during their first sound check. “We were joking with each other and someone brought up not worrying about your next stripe. [Fellow host] Berto pointed out that I’m on deck for a black belt, so I definitely don’t need to worry about stripes. Brandon chimed in that I would probably end up being a fifth stripe brown belt. They laughed, I cried. The rest is history.”
The podcast is now on its fourth episode, so you can listen to a few sessions on your commute to see what you think. But for those wondering what to expect in the future, McGuire says we can expect discussions on everything from beer to how to use BJJ to defeat mythical creatures to updates on future Third Coast Grappling shows. 5th Stripe also features the opportunity for listeners to submit their own questions for the hosts to answer on air.
Before you dive in, here’s what you should know about your hosts:
Professor Brandon Mullins has been training jiu-jitsu for over twenty years and has been teaching for over fifteen years. He has trained in both Brazil and Japan in addition to the United States. He has an extensive competition resume, and his major accomplishments include 2x No-Gi World Champion, No-Gi Pan American Champion, European Champion, Masters World Champion, and 2x U.S. Open Champion. He has been teaching at the prestigious Grace Barra Texas academy under Professor Vinicius “Draculino” Magalhaes since 2010. He has released two DVD instructions sets on jiu-jitsu and is the owner and operator of justgipants.com. In addition, he has a degree in Biology from Texas Tech University and is currently pursuing an engineering degree from the University of Texas.
Austin is the chief financial officer for Saloon Door Brewing, which sponsors the podcast and hosts the recording every week. But before all that, he was a practicing attorney in Texas and New York. He calls his new career path “much more fun and interesting.” He trains under Draculino and is currently a third-year blue belt.
Oliver lives in Texas now, but he was actually born in England and has lived all over the world thanks to his dad’s job in the oil industry. Now a comedian and stay-at-home dad to a six- and two-year-old, he formerly worked at NASA for thirteen years. His BJJ journey started with Draculino about ten years ago, and he’s now a four-stripe brown belt.
Alan is a black belt under Draculino and Mullins and has been training for about thirteen years. He initially started training for MMA and self-defense, and he’s since traveled and trained all over the world. He’s been with Gracie Barra for about six years and says that he still wants to meet even more BJJ practitioners and share the insight he’s gained from his journey and experiences.
Now a black belt, Roberto initially started training BJJ in 2010 after his college P.E. coach told him about a jiu-jitsu club found on a different campus. A year later, he signed up at Gracie Barra and began learning under Draculino and Mullins. me about a BJJ club at a different campus. Roberto has been working for Gracie Barra Texas since 2012 and is now the head instructor for the kids’ program.
Ricky is a brown belt under Draculino and Mullins. He was born in the United States, but spend his first few years of life in El Salvador. He joined jiu-jitsu shortly after his brother Berto did. Now, Ricky has a degree in literature with plans to pursue a post-graduate degree sometime soon. In the meantime, he coaches Muy Thai and the kids’ classes at the gym.
Check out 5th Stripe here, and be on the lookout every Monday for new episodes!