Rockhold to defend title, and other links

Luke Rockhold, a Santa Cruz native and Soquel High alum who won the Strikeforce middleweight title in early September with his surprising win over Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza, is slated to defend his title against Keith Jardine on Jan. 7, according to multiple online sites.

The fight hasn’t been officially announced by Strikeforce, although mmafighting.com, which first reported the news last night, said the title fight is expected to headline the organization’s first event at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.

Rockhold’s spoke early Friday morning via his Twitter account, saying, “Yep fighting Jardine on the 7th who would of thought! Not my first choice but a quality opponent, I’m not sleeping on.”

Many expected Rockhold (8-1) to defend his title against Tim Kennedy, although Kennedy is said to be sidelined with an injury.

Jardine (17-9-2) was a veteran of the UFC before it released him in June 2010. Jardine battled Gegard Mousasi to a draw in his Strikeforce debut in April.

Heavy.com also had info on the fight.

Prior to fighting Souza, Rockhold was sidelined for 18 months due to injuries.

— The Sentinel’s Ryan Moses had an update on Utah State’s Quinn Garner earlier this week. Here is another story from The Herald Journal in Logan, Utah.

— SLV alum Andy Levitre could reach the Pro Bowl this season.

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