WWE has been holding huge tryouts during WrestleMania week. The company recently shifted its focus from experienced wrestlers to college athletes who don’t necessarily have any ring experience. The company’s NIL program has added an additional recruiting arm that did not exist in the past.

Abule Abadi-Fitzgerald was a standout defensive tackle for the Kentucky Wildcats in college. Knowing his gridiron career would be coming to an end soon. Abule knew he wanted to stay involved in athletics. A fateful phone call from WWE has made that possible.

Abadi-Fitzgerald was invited to WWE’s WrestleMania week tryout camp in Dallas. The call was completely unexpected. Abule talked to the KSR Football podcast about his experience.

“They contacted me on Instagram. Long story short, they said they see me as a prospect and they would like me to come try out and if I’m interested, I should let them know and give them my number and talk to them. I was like, ‘Oh my God, WWE just contacted me.’ I was freaking out. The first thing I did was take a screenshot and sent it to my family, ‘You’re not going to believe the company that just contacted me.’ ‘No way, WWE.’ ‘Yes!’ ‘What are you going to do? Are you going to try?’ I was like, ‘I don’t know. I told them to give me a couple of days to think about it. I thought about it and thought, ‘Maybe I’m done with football, but I don’t want to be done with the athletic side of my life. I want to do something else athletic. You know what, I’ll give this a try and see if I like it. I ended up deciding I was going to do it and went through the whole process. Boom, here I am trying out for WWE.


Going into the tryout, I was very curious about what the ring was like. ‘I want to see if I can land on this and see how it feels.’ I went in the ring and it was great, it was awesome. The ropes are bouncy. We did a lot of conditioning, just testing our athletic ability. Conditioning to see if you’re in shape and a couple of ring drills. Those ring drills were some pretty good cardio. I’m exhausted right now. It wears you out. I’m just getting myself ready. I had energy and I was able to get through it, but it was a lot of cardio.”

Even a well-conditioned athlete who competed at the highest collegiate level felt the strain of his WWE tryout. That could be a key reason that WWE is focusing on seasoned athletes in their recruiting. Time will tell if any future superstars will come out of this week’s tryout. Abule Abadi-Fitzgerald will never forget his experience.

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H/T Fightful

Michael Perry

Michael Perry is a news contributor for Ringside News and Thirsty for News. Michael has an M.A. in Communication Technology from Point Park University in his hometown of Pittsburgh, PA.

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