Sports News

Former running back Walker signs up for martial arts

Former Dallas Cowboys running back Herschel Walker celebrates after scoring on a 64-yard game touchdown pass reception from quarterback Troy Aikman during fourth quarter action against the Jacksonville Jaguars October 19, 1997. REUTERS/Stringer

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Former Heisman trophy winner and twice NFL Pro Bowl running back Herschel Walker has signed a multi-fight contract to compete in Mixed Martial Arts (MMA), promoter Strikeforce said on Monday.

A fifth degree black belt in Taekwondo, the 47-year-old Walker begins a 12-week training camp in California next month, Strikeforce said on its website (

“I will go in there and test myself against any 20-year-old,” Walker said in a statement.

“I want to prove to people who sit on a couch and don’t do anything but criticize other people that, if you’re a true athlete or martial artist, you’re not old until you can’t get up and walk around anymore.

“I’ve been training for several years,” Walker added.

“I would play college football games on Saturday and then compete in martial arts tournaments on Sunday after church I’m now looking forward to opening up another chapter in my life and to competing in MMA.”

After winning the 1982 Heisman trophy as U.S. college football’s outstanding player, Walker played 12 seasons in the NFL with four teams including the Dallas Cowboys and Minnesota Vikings.

Walker also completed in the 1992 Winter Olympics for the United States in the bobsled and more recently appeared on Donald Trump’s reality show “The Celebrity Apprentice.”

Writing by Steve Keating in Toronto; Editing by Ed Osmond