Lars Sullivan is a WWE wrestler from Colorado whose real name is Dylan Miley. The 31-year-old has had a career marred by controversy, scandal and injuries. In 2019, just as he began his career on the main WWE roster, Sullivan apologized after his past homophobic, racist and sexist posts he made on a bodybuilding message board were exposed.
On December 27, while sidelined with a serious injury, WWE fans revealed Sullivan likely was an adult film star, appearing in gay porn videos and photos, prior to his wrestling career. Sullivan has not responded to the latest scandal.
Sullivan was once billed as the WWE’s “next Brock Lesnar,” with an imposing bodybuilder physique and height. But he has yet to live up to the hype. As rumors spread on social media about his possible past in the adult film industry, Sullivan deleted his Twitter account. He is still recovering from an injury and it’s not clear when, or if, he will return to the WWE screen. The WWE has not commented about the reports about his potential porn past.
Here’s what you need to know about Lars Sullivan:
1. Lars Sullivan Appears to Have Used the Stage Name Mitch Bennett While Briefly Working in the Adult Film Industry About 4 Years Before His Pro Wrestling Career Began
On December 28, Lars Sullivan was a top trend on social media after a wrestling fan revealed that he appears to have worked in the adult film industry before he became a pro wrestler. Sullivan has neither confirmed nor denied he is in the photos and videos posted on social media. But a tattoo on his arm, which has since been covered up, matches both Sullivan and the man in the gay porn photos and videos. The man uses the stage name Mitch Bennett. Other details about Mitch Bennett also match up with Sullivan.
The porn star Mitch Bennett appeared in videos and photos taken in 2009 and 2010. A profile on the website RandyBlue.com, written from the site producer’s perspective, explains:
Working in this industry I often see guys that catch my eye, but rarely do I see someone who makes me stop in my tracks and just stare. I was at the gym the other day doing my workout when I noticed something strange. One by one all the guys around me were slowly turning their heads. I looked around to see what they were looking at and he was walking right past me. He had the most incredible muscular body, not like a bodybuilder but like someone who had worked on a farm or had done a lot of heavy lifting his whole life and then augmented what nature had given him with strict gym workouts to make it even better. His face was ruggedly handsome and when he smiled you caught a glimpse of a sweetness you wouldn’t expect to see. There was such a confident swagger in his walk, self-assured without being arrogant. My head joined the rest as I followed this hunk of beef across the gym floor. Everyone else was a little intimidated but you all know me, I walked right up to him and asked him who he modeled for. He smiled this huge toothy grin and let out a belly laugh I didn’t know he was capable of. He said he wasn’t a model and I told him that he was now, all he had to do is call me. I gave him my card and we started to chat. We ended up showering, at the same time though not together, and it gave me a great idea for his debut video. Later, I could feel jealous eyes from all around the gym as we left together.
Mitch Bennett does not appear to have continued his adult film career beyond 2010. Lars Sullivan, whose real name is Dylan Miley, began his pro wrestling career in 2013.
2. Sullivan Posted Racist, Homophobic & Sexist Comments, Including About WWE Wrestlers & Their Families, & Was Fined $100,000 by the WWE & Forced to Undergo Sensitivity Training
Earlier in 2019, Lars Sullivan was forced to apologize, pay a $100,000 fine and undergo sensitivity training after WWE fans on Reddit dug up his past posts on bodybuilding message boards that included racist, sexist and homophobic comments, according to Sports Illustrated. His posts also included personal attacks on current and former WWE wrestlers and members of their families. Sullivan issued a statement saying, “There is no excuse for the inappropriate remarks that I made years ago. They do not reflect my personal beliefs nor who I am today, and I apologize to anyone I offended.”
Sullivan posted on the website bodybuilding.com using the names “Disenfranchised” and “ElPerfecto.” The accounts were tied to him using photos of himself he posted on the message boards, along with comments that match his biography. A lengthy Reddit post highlights some of the posts made by Sullivan and the evidence that connected the usernames to him.
In March 2012, he wrote, “If we’re going off scientific facts, obviously wither Hispanic or Black women. Who pops out the most babies at the youngest age? Hispanics followed by blacks. Why do 50% of black women have STD’s? SLOOTS.”
In July 2012, he wrote, “I don’t actually have any true hateful feelings for gay people, but it’s just a part of my sense of humor I like to explore. Homophobia, racism, sexism, these are all hilarious things to make light of in the right environment (among other straight men).”
In August 2012, Sullivan said, “The fact is there is a grey area when it comes to the definition of rape.” He said about Muslims in 2013, “They should be demonized for their religion. They are violent and have a violent agenda against America.”
Sullivan also mocked the suicide of a gay wrestler and disparaged other wrestlers for their public battles with mental illness. He also praised a white supremacist rock band that included a member who went on to kill six people at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin.
At least one WWE wrestler, reacted publicly, Big E, who is black, tweeted, “Many are aware. If true, he has to bear the albatross of being a bigot & working in a company that is now filled with minorities.”
The WWE issued a statement saying, “WWE supports a culture of inclusion regardless of gender, race, religion or sexual orientation, and we are committed to embracing all individuals as demonstrated by the diversity of our employees, performers and fans worldwide. Dylan Miley (aka Lars Sullivan) will be fined $100,000 and required to complete sensitivity training for offensive commentary uncovered from his past. WWE will also facilitate meetings for Dylan with community organizations to foster further discussion around the power of social media and the impact of your words.”
3. Lars Sullivan Attended Arvada High School in Colorado, Where He Was a Football Player
Lars Sullivan, then known by his real name, Dylan Miley, was born in Westminster, Colorado. He graduated from Arvada High School, where he played football, according to a 2004 news article. He was honorable mention all-state player in 2004.
Prior to his wrestling career, the 6’3″, 300-pound athlete tried to make it in the bodybuilding world, according to his posts on messages boards for bodybuilders. He also wrote about wanting to make it in pro wrestling, either in TNA or WWE.
According to a recent obituary, his father, Peter Miley, died on October 2, 2019, in Colorado.
He has dealt with anxiety issues for several years. Before his WWE main roster debut, he disappeared and missed a show. A representative, William Christensen, tweeted, “There has been a lot of speculation about Lars recently. It’s true, he went missing several weeks ago and I was just able to contact him this morning. Lars wants everyone to know he is in a good place, and is sorry to everyone he’s disappointed.”
4. Sullivan Was Signed to a Developmental Deal by the WWE in 2013, Began Appearing on NXT in 2017 & Joined the Company’s Main Roster in April 2019
Dylan Miley signed a developmental deal with the WWE in 2013. According to Sports Illustrated, he was signed after training with Bobby Lashley. “Sullivan is billed from the Rocky Mountains, and for good reason: in addition to growing up in Colorado, he also went to wrestling school in Denver. Sullivan did his base training with Lashley, who was so impressed with the raw talent Sullivan possessed that he called the WWE and pushed that it hire him and mold him into a superstar,” SI wrote.
Miley began training at the WWE Performance Center. PWMania.com wrote in 2014, “The new WWE NXT star that Sasha Banks and Kevin Steen hyped on Twitter is confirmed to be Dylan Miley, who impressed WWE officials with a 37-inch vertical leap at a tryout back in 2013. It looks as if Miley’s large size may be a part of his character. He’s also been posting photos of his very large hands, leading to some speculation that he may use a claw as his finisher. I was also told that Miley is a ‘spectacle on the mic.'”
In 2015, according to SI, Brock Lesnar went there to train specifically with Miley because he was impressed by him. He first used the name Lars Sullivan in May 2017 in NXT. He continued to fight on the WWE’s NXT brand until June 2018.
In the fall of 2018, the WWE began to promote Sullivan’s main roster debut on both “Raw” and “Smackdown.” But before he could make his debut on “Raw” in January 2019, Sullivan walked away because of an anxiety attack, according to PWInsider.com. He eventually returned and made his debut in April 2019 on “Raw.”
Sullivan has been out of action since June 2019, when he suffered a knee injury, and was expected to be sidelined for six to nine months.
5. Lars Sullivan Was Featured in WWE Magazine in 2009, Telling a Story About How His Girlfriend Broke Up With Him Because He Was a Wrestling Fan
In 2009, several years before his pro wrestling career began, Lars Sullivan, then 20, was featured in WWE Magazine after sending in a letter to the organization’s promotional outlet. Sullivan said in the letter that his ex-girlfriend broke up with him because he went to a wrestling show instead of celebrating her birthday with her.
Sullivan, who used his real name, Dylan Miley, in the letter, wrote, “I was the high school football jock and she was the very sexy, 5’4, 120-pound cheerleader. We were together for two years and matched up perfectly. We both liked sports. I attempted to get her into WWE by bringing her to live events. She didn’t like them, but they were my treat, so, she came anyway. I would go to her high school volleyball games. That was our compromise. The only thing that tore us apart was my obsession with wrestling, and her dislike of big, oily men smashing each other with steel chairs.”
He continued, “Things finally came to a head when I travelled to New York City for ECW One Night Stand in 2005. Her birthday fell on a day of the trip. Of course, she took it as an insult. She said, ‘If you go, then it’s over’. Honestly, I didn’t care, ‘cause I was never gonna miss One Night Stand. After I returned home, I tried to smooth things over. I even gave her a present for her birthday; it was an ECW shirt. We haven’t spoken since.”
In the photo accompanying the feature, Sullivan can be seen wearing an “Austin 3:16” T-shirt. Sullivan also wore the same shirt to a WWE Raw event in 2012. He could be seen standing in the crowd in the background, according to Fox Sports.