Master Danny Ives

3rd Degree Black Belt in Jiu Jitsu
Owner and Head Coach of Ivey League MMA

Danny Ives is a 3rd degree Black Belt in Gracie Jiu Jitsu and is considered a pioneer of BJJ in the United States. He’s traveled the world and trained with teams such as Renzo Gracie, Brazilian Top Team, Gracie Barra, Machado Brothers, and Gracie Humita.

A top ranked competitor, he’s won tournaments such as Grapplers Quest, NAGA, Tri-State Ground Control Classic, Yamasaki Open, NYC Grappling Challenge, and The California Open.

A major highlight in his competitive career was winning the gold medal at the prestigious Pan American Games in 2001, becoming the first American to win the Purple Belt Featherweight division.

Danny has worked in the field of Mixed Martial Arts and grappling as a competitor, referee, matchmaker, teacher, and ambassador. He’s seen MMA change drastically over his 25 year career.

Danny brings a no-nonsense approach to teaching and a family atmosphere to Ivey League. Students are treated with respect, honor, and loyalty. As a student, you’ll receive personal attention, learn great techniques, and, most importantly, you’ll have fun.

Coach Rickey Lawrence

Kickboxing Coach

Coach Rickey began his martial arts training under Master Lynette Love at Love’s Taekwondo Academy.

It was there that he fostered his love of martial arts it was also there that he received his 1st degree Black Belt at the age of nine.

Throughout his time in training he won numerous Taekwondo titles and even advanced to his third Degree Black Belt.

He would apply and eventually get accepted into Norfolk State Universities highly accredited business program.

It was during his time in college that his sister and fellow instructor Coach Bebe would begin to excel at kickboxing winning the 2010 Wka National and World Titles and thus pushing him head first into the sport.

It was during his time spent training with his sister that he met Kru Jose Villarisco. Later that year Kru Jose would move back to Virginia Beach and open OutFox Mixed Martial Arts Academy and it was there the he began to truly take the Sport of Muay Thai seriously and begin his training in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu as well.

During the years of 2010-2012 coach Rickey balanced training, competition, and continuing his education at Norfolk State University eventually graduating in December 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in Business and Entrepreneurship.

Coach Rickey recently began a government job in Maryland which is how he came to us here at Ivey League MMA on Master Danny’s recommendation.



  • 5 time Maryland State Champ
  • 2 time 4th place finisher Junior Olympics
  • 4 time Captains Cup Champion Muay Thai
  • 2012 WKA Nationals 3rd Place Finisher
  • 2013 WKKO Runner Up

Coach Alex Ward

Former Division 1 Wrestler at Nebraska
State Champion Senior Year of HS (Mount Saint Joseph)

Coach Alex Ward comes to Ivey League with a long list of accomplishments in the sport of Wrestling. His Wrestling classes have helped everyone from the professional fighter to the novice student become successful using takedown skills from the art of Wrestling.Learn more about Coach Alex from the man himself:
“I started wrestling when I was 9 years old as a member of the Navy Junior Wrestling team based out of the USNA wrestling room. I was fortunate to be coached by Wayne Hicks (NCAA Runner-Up for Navy) and my father, Kelly Ward (NCAA Champion for Iowa State). Having such knowledgeable coaches at such a young age taught me how important technique is in wrestling. I went on to wrestle at Mt. St. Joseph High School in Baltimore and then at the University of Nebraska.”

Below you’ll find just a few of his many competitive accomplishments and coaching experience.

High School:

Maryland State Champion, 2x Finalist (placements of 3rd-2nd-1st).
3x National Prep Tournament place-winner.
3x MIAA Conference Champion.
3x Freestyle and 3x Greco-Roman Maryland State Champion.
Member of 3 State Championship teams at Mt. St. Joseph High School (’03, ’04, & ’05).
2004-05 MSJ team won the prestigious Powerade Christmas Tournament in Pennsylvania (defeated the eventual PA AAA & VA AA State Champions).


Wrestled for the University of Nebraska from 2006-2010.
3-year Varsity Letterwinner.
Member of 2009 Big 12 Championship team.

Coaching Experience:

Assistant Coach at Mt. St. Joseph High School (Baltimore, MD) 2013-14.
Coached 2 State Champions, 1 State Runner-Up, and 1 National Prep Champion.
Team finished 3rd in the MIS State Tournament and 5th at National Preps.
Assistant Coach at St. Mary’s High School (Annapolis, MD) 2012-13.
Assistant Coach at Bullseye Wrestling Club (Annapolis, MD) 2009-2013.
Assisted in running a wrestling club for local high school and college wrestlers.

Coach Keith Cebula

1st Degree Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu
Head BJJ Instructor

Coach Keith began his Jiu-Jitsu journey in December of 2006. Along the way, he’s won medals at a multitude of Adult/Masters tournaments, both regional and grand slam. In his free time, Coach Keith likes to skateboard and play video games. However, he’s said that if he could, he would be with his family and train BJJ all day long. When he’s not training or teaching, Coach Keith works for a company that builds model trains.


Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt
2016 Brown Belt Masters World Gold Medalist (Masters 2)
2011 Blue Belt World Bronze Medalist (Adult)
Multiple International Open Titles at Purple Belt & Brown Belt