Dominick Cruz, Urijah Faber Confirmed As TUF 15 CoachesUFC Bantamweight Champion Dominick “The Dominator” Cruz and bitter rival “The California Kid” Urijah Faber will serve as coaches on The Ultimate Fighter 15. The upcoming live season of the competition, the first in history, will air on the FOX-owned FX network and begins on March 9, 2012.

UFC officials announced the news tonight and confirmed that TUF 15 will feature both lightweight and welterweight contestants. Cruz and Faber have already faced off twice in the past, with both fighters earning one victory. At UFC 132 in July, Cruz defeated Faber in a rematch to retain his UFC title.

Cruz (19-1-0) and Faber (26-5-0) first clashed at WEC 26 in March 2007 for Faber’s WEC Featherweight Championship. Cruz suffered his first and only defeat in the fight, losing by guillotine choke in quick fashion. He dropped down to 135 pounds and rebounded with five straight wins including a key victory over Faber’s teammate, Joseph Benavidez, and later captured the WEC Bantamweight Championship from Brian Bowles in 2010. Cruz made two successful defences of his title before the WEC merged with the UFC early this year.

Faber has faced ups and downs in recent years since losing his WEC title to Mike Brown at WEC 36. Following a second loss to Brown and a lopsided defeat against then-WEC champion José “Scarface” Aldo, Faber dropped down to the bantamweight division and won two straight fights, including his UFC debut this past March. This led Faber to a rematch with Cruz for the newly-created UFC Bantamweight Championship, but he came up short and dropped a close but Unanimous Decision after five rounds.

The rivals will now face off for a third time at the conclusion of TUF 15, which will be the first live season of the show to date. Live fights will take place every Friday night and winners will be crowned in both the lightweight and welterweight divisions. The show will conclude in mid-2012. Tryouts were recently held for the show and over 350 fighters reportedly attended in hopes of landing a spot in the competition.



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  1. Faber would make a good coach since he’s been around.
    Cruz doesn’t seem like the coaching type, doesn’t bring to the table what Faber brings.
    Weak pick.