In May 2003 IPW Hardcore promoters created the JEFF PETERSON MEMORIAL CUP in tribute to the fallen cruiserweight star who passed in 2001 after a long battle with cancer. Since then the event has garnered a list of international stars who supported the event and honored Jeff’s memory by putting on five star caliber bouts. The previous winners were “Reckless Youth” Tom Carter, Justice, Chris Sabin, Milano Collection AT and Chris Hero. This weekend sixteen men will come to Port Richey and Brooksville, Florida to try and join those names. Could this year’s winner be:
“The Campus Legend” Brad Attitude
Hometown: Greensboro, NC
Pro Debut: September, 2002
Tournament history: FCW Tag Team Tournament
Where have you seen him: WWE, Florida Championship Wrestling (WWE developmental), CWF, Heartland Wrestling, NWA Wildside
Championships held: Two-time FCW Tag Team champion (w/Nic Nemeth), two-time CWF Mid-Atlantic Tag Team champion (w/Brad Rainz)
Alan Wojcik: What does being part of the 2008 Jeff Peterson Memorial Cup mean to you and what did you know of Jeff before you were invited to be part of the event?
Brad Attutide: To be honest, this tournament means everything to me right now. It’s the only show I wanted to do at this time because I know how important it is. From a personal standpoint, cancer has been a serious issue in my life for a long time. In 1994, my mother was diagnosed with Lung and Brain cancer and given a 6% chance of survival. Through a miracle from God, she lived cancer-free up until she passed away last October. This disease also took my Grandmother so I’ve been involved with the American Cancer Society for awhile now and any benefit I can do to raise awareness, I will gladly do! From a professional standpoint, I have a lot to prove to the Florida fans who haven’t seen me before and even more to prove to myself at this point in my career. What better way to do it than the Jeff Peterson Memorial Cup. I never knew Jeff personally but I knew of his struggles and I know that this cup in his honor is the most prestigious pro wrestling tournament in the country year in and year out!
Alan Wojcik: What made you wake up one day and say I want to become a professional wrestler and describe the training process you went through.
Brad Attitude: I knew from a very young age that I wanted to be a pro wrestler when I grew up. My family used to take me to Starrcade’s in the 80′s when they were in Greensboro and me and my dad watched wrestling religiously throughout my childhood so I didn’t know of anything else I could be. When I was done with high school and collegiate athletics, I chose to take a job with CWF Mid Atlantic setting up rings and doing odd jobs. Once a month, I would drive 2 ½ hours from Boone to Burlington to set up the ring before the shows and get trained in the time before the show started. I eventually moved back to Greensboro so the training would be more frequent and after 9 months of it, I had my first match.
Alan Wojcik: How was Brad Attitude born and how different is he from the “Campus Legend” character you used in FCW?
Brad Attitude: The name Brad Attitude was created in a hurry because I didn’t know of my debut until about 3 days beforehand. I was forced to quickly get some gear and create a name so I remembered that I had some ex’s from my past who thought I had my own “attitude” all to myself so it just clicked I guess. The “Campus Legend” character I created is basically myself turned up quite a bit. I went to a few different colleges and enjoyed the campus lifestyle (maybe a bit too much) so I decided to try something I was more familiar with. They are both extensions of my personality which is why I ended up combining them. The only main difference I guess would be my bleach blonde hair but I’m working on getting that back to normal.
Alan Wojcik: You have been a regular in the Mid-Atlantic area with CWF. Talk about that promotion and working in a territory that is legendary thanks to the Crockett’s.
Brad Attitude: Being a professional wrestler from NC is something I’m very proud of. I grew up in the middle of “Flair Country” and was a huge fan of the NWA growing up. The stuff that the Horsemen did with Dusty, Magnum and the Road Warriors was revolutionary for the wrestling business during that time. Fast forward to me getting into the business and creating friendships with the Hardys, Shane, Shannon and the rest of the Omega Crew gives you a sense of pride but also some big shoes to fill knowing that so many from the state have become so successful.
Alan Wojcik: You told me in an email you did some work for Hearland Wrestling on their TV tapings. Do you have any good HWA stories you wish to share?
Brad Attitude: Early in my career, I was befriended by Matt Stryker (with a Y), he was a mainstay in Cincinnati with HWA at that time. So sometimes, I would make the 8 hour Tuesday drive to do TV and then have to leave right after to be back in time for work on Wednesday morning. I have nothing but great memories because I was just learning so much at that time. I do remember that HWA was the first time I ever saw a time cue being given so loudly. Cody Hawk used to have an interesting way of throwing a chair against the dressing room wall if your match was taking a bit too long out there.
Alan Wojcik: You also mentioned doing work with WWE for nearly four years before they signed you to a developmental deal. What was the tryout process like and did you ever think, “why aren’t they signing me I am as good as the other talent here?”
Brad Attitude: I never thought that way because you will drive yourself crazy worrying about that. Even if you are good at one thing, they might be looking for something completely different. It’s about the look, about the work, about the gimmick, but it’s also about timing and sometimes you gotta wait longer than others. I enjoyed my “enhancement” work while I was there and I got to work with some really good wrestlers in front of the biggest TV crowds I’ve ever worked in front of. Plus after a while, I started working every time I went to TV so that’s a boost to your confidence when they trust you that much.
Alan Wojcik: WWE sent you here to Florida Championship Wrestling run by the legendary Steve Keirn and Dr. Tom Pritchard. Talk about a typical day in the training facility if there is one to reference.
Brad Attitude: FCW is a top notch facility in a beautiful city, what isn’t there to love about it. Steve Keirn is a great teacher but an even better friend and mentor. Dr. Tom is the ultimate when it comes to WWE developmental, nobody knows more about training than him. I mean, this man trained the Rock and Kurt Angle in the first developmental class so he knows what he’s talking about. Then you got Dusty Rhodes helping with promos and characters, what else can you ask for. FCW truly is the future of the WWE.
Alan Wojcik: When you joined FCW they were just running weekly events at a New Port Richey bar. What did you think of the atmosphere at Bourbon Street?
Brad Attitude: Bourbon Street is special in it’s own right and they have some pretty loyal fans. I think they were used to a certain product there before and it took us awhile to get them liking our particular brand but I think it’s gradually happened over the past year.
Alan Wojcik: Not long after your FCW debut you became a tag team with “the Natural” Nic Nemeth. The two of you were fun to watch every week. Was it fun to be partnered with someone who already had been on WWE TV?
Brad Attitude: It was fun to be partnered with Nic period, it had nothing to do with the fact he was on TV before. As much fun as we were to watch on camera, we were even funnier off of it! In my opinion, a great tag team needs to get along and have that chemistry outside of the ring because it translates over and I think we had that. He is truly one of the funniest people I’ve ever met and hopefully soon all of the world will see how good he really is on RAW.
Alan Wojcik: Also not long after your debut, WWE shut down Ohio Valley Wrestling and moved the rest of the developmental roster to Florida. Were you worried about it seeing now there was going to be 60-70 people in the training facility?
Brad Attitude: Actually, I wasn’t worried at all but looking back on it maybe I should have been a little more conscious of it. I was a bit naïve in a way because I knew a lot of the OVW crew and I was looking forward to working with them again. It probably put a lot of pressure on the trainers having to look after so much talent but it also created some new feuds and introduced fresh faces for the fans of FCW. I made many lifelong friendships that I will treasure for the rest of my life from Florida Championship Wrestling and I wouldn’t trade any of it!
Alan Wojcik: You guys won the FCW Tag Team championships and also scored an ex-Playboy girl as your partner in crime named Taryn Terrell. Here’s a loaded question what did she bring to the duo to make it better?
Brad Attitude: Taryn gave the women in the audience who loved us so much, a reason to finally hate us. It also gave the men another reason to be jealous of us! I mean we were all three gorgeous blondes… Me (a Campus Legend) Nic (a collegiate wrestling champion) and Taryn (cover girl for Playboy’s College Coeds) … I mean, what’s not to love about that? Haha!
Alan Wojcik: If there someone in this year’s field you see a the main obstacle between you and the trophy being in your hand on September 27th and why?
Brad Attitude: Well I’m very familiar with the British Lions (Chris Gray and Tommy Taylor) from their work in FCW. I tried to learn a lot of cool British moves from them in exchange for my knowledge of Anheuser Busch products, but I’m not sure if they taught me all that they know. I do know that quite a few of these guys have made names for themselves in ROH so there is no shortage of talent in this tournament. However, I have been doing my research though and you can bet that the Campus Legend will be ready to take everyone to school!
The 2008 Jeff Peterson Memorial Cup will be held Friday September 26th in Port Richey and Saturday September 27th in Brooksville. FL. Tickets and show information is available on http://jpc2008.com