Chris Ferguson is a celebrated poker professional born in Las Angeles, California April 11, 1963. Chris is perhaps best known for his cowboy fashions, sporting impenetrable black sunglasses, long dark hair capped by a sable cowboy hat, and anything from a clean-cut goatee to rugged full beard.
Ferguson’s phenomenal poker skills must come from his parents. Both of his parents have doctoral degrees in mathematics, while his father, Thomas Ferguson, is a UCLA teacher of game theory and theoretical probabilities. Game theory and mathematics make up much of Chris Ferguson’s poker playing style.
Chris has been playing poker since before he was 10 years old. At the age of 18, he enrolled in UCLA, where he spent the next half of his life – 5 years as an undergraduate, another 13 as a graduate student. It was during this time that Ferguson hones his poker skills playing for fun on the computer in IRC chats. Ferguson earned his Ph.D. in Computer Science before reluctantly moving on from college life.
Chris Ferguson – “Jesus”
Chris Ferguson quickly picked up his famous poker-playing nickname, “Jesus”, due to his famously characteristic appearance – long dark-brown hair, inconsistent but ever-present beard and calm, collected demeanor. Ferguson is known for developing a motionless pose to prevent his opposition from “reading” him. Chris intentionally took on the trademark cowboy hat and sunglasses to disguise his college student status.
Chris Ferguson and the WSOP
Ferguson began his poker tournament career in 1994, entering poker tournaments in California while still attending college as a graduate student. In 1995, Chris made his first entry to the World Series of Poker (WSOP). It wasn’t until 2000 when Chris Ferguson went on to place first in the WSOP Main Event, sending T. J. Cloutier to the rails and pocketing his first major cash of $1.5 million.
Over the years, Chris Ferguson has earned himself 5 WSOP bracelets – 2 in the 2000 WSOP, including his first place Main Event finish, another in 2001, and the final 2 WSOP bracelets in 2003. Ferguson is the only professional poker player to have won 3 WSOP poker circuit events in addition to his WSOP bracelets.
Chris Ferguson – Full Tilt Poker
Chris Ferguson was the driving force behind the immensely successful online poker room, Full Tilt Poker. Having spent several years honing his skills playing poker over the Internet, Chris felt it was time to innovate the online work industry.
Gathering a team of skilled poker players and expert software programmers, Ferguson launched Full Tilt Poker in 2004. Ferguson spends much of his time finding ways to improve the online poker room in an effort to give its members the highest quality online poker experience. To date, Full Tilt Poker is the second largest online poker room in the world in regards to player traffic.
Chris Ferguson’s Other Achievements
In 2005, Chris Ferguson entered the National Heads-Up Poker Championship, finishing in second place to Phil Hellmuth. In 2006, Ferguson entered once more and again fell just short, finishing in second under Ted Forrest.
According to Chris, he took on a personal challenge, painstakingly turning a single $1 into $20,000 at an online poker room in a period of 6 months. He then took it upon himself to turn $0 into $10,000 at Full Tilt Poker, starting with freeroll tournaments and wagering the prize money. The total has surpassed $10,000 and continues to grow and fluctuate, at one time reported to exceed $20,000.
Chris Ferguson has made a few admissions on television since gaining fame as one of the world’s top professional poker players. The most interesting would be his ability to throw playing cards so fast that he can slice through a banana, carrot and even a melon. Ferguson also revealed that he was once the president of the swing dancing club at UCLA.
Over his long, impressive poker career, Chris Ferguson has racked up 105 cashes, 10 first-place finishes and 5 WSOP bracelets. His total cash earnings to date equal $5,795,898. His favorite poker games are No-Limit Hold’em and No-Limit 5 Card Stud. It is Ferguson’s dream to join a major university as a professor of game theory. His charming demeanor and trademark fashions, combined with an impeccable skill at playing poker, have turned Chris Ferguson into a living legend among the poker world.