Cole Abate promoted to BJJ black belt

World-class 18-year-old competitor Cole Abate has been promoted to BJJ black belt by Guilherme Mendes.

One of the most promising and talented young grapplers in the history of jiu-jitsu is now officially a black belt.

Over the weekend, 18-year-old Art of Jiu-Jitsu product Cole Abate was awarded his black belt by his longtime instructor Guilherme Mendes. The promotion came immediately after Abate won his third and final match at the IBJJF Asian Championships where he won gold in the brown belt lightweight division.

Although he’s just hours into his official black belt career, Abate has already firmly established himself as one of the planet’s top no-gi competitors. A 2021 ADCC East Coast Trials champion and ADCC veteran, the teenager holds notable victories over 10th Planet veteran Geo Martinez, no-gi world champion Estevan Martinez, no-gi Pans champion Deandre Corbe, and multiple-time ADCC veteran Keith Krikorian.

Unsurprisingly, Abate enjoyed an incredibly successful career competing in the colored belts in both the gi and no-gi. A purple belt world champion, he began the year by winning gold at the 2023 IBJJF European Championships and was promoted to brown belt on the podium. A few months later, he won gold at the IBJJF World Championships.

Ben Coate

Ben has been involved with grappling, whether through wrestling or Brazilian jiu-jitsu, essentially his entire life. After wrestling throughout his childhood, Ben found Brazilian jiu-jitsu as a young adult and quickly fell in love. He has been training for over ten years and currently holds the rank of brown belt, and remains involved in both the MMA and BJJ scene. Ben has been writing about combat sports since 2017. He has interviewed and profiled some of MMA's biggest stars, including multiple UFC champions.

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