TUF 26 Competitors Announced for this Seasons The Ultimate Fighter

The Ultimate Fighter has a long and storied history in the world of mixed martial arts. The reality show is one that has produced some of the biggest stars in the sport, including current UFC champions Michael Bisping and TJ Dillashaw.

Just yesterday it was revealed that this season will feature featherweights (145lbs) and bantamweights (135lbs) with Eddie Alvarez and Justin Gaethje serving as coaches. The show will be filmed this summer for a debut later this fall on Fox Sports 1.

Now, we have word on which 16 fighters will participate in TUF 26:

TUF 26 Competitors Announced for this Seasons The Ultimate Fighter

Diego Rivas vs. John Gunther

Shana Dobson vs. Ariel Beck

Gillian Robertson vs. Emily Whitmire

Melanie Lacroix vs. Karine Gevorgyan

Nicco Montano vs. Montana Stewart

Roxanne Modafferi vs. Barb Honchak

Rachael Ostovich vs. Karina Rodriguez

Sijara Eubanks vs. Maia Stevenson

Dana White’s Contender Series. A blog about the up and coming talents in the ufc.

The UFC has announced this season’s cast of The Ultimate Fighter, which is set to debut on FS1 on Aug. 30 at 10pm ET/7pm PT.

TUF 26 will feature the inaugural UFC women’s flyweight division. This season’s coaches are current women’s bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes and Valentina Shevchenko, who will battle for the title on Dec. 30 in Calgary. TUF 26 will follow a similar format as last season, with the winner becoming the first ever UFC women’s flyweight champion.

A total of 16 fighters – eight from each side – will compete in a tournament style format over the course of 12 weeks with the winner earning a UFC contract and a title shot at the new women’s flyweight champion.

The UFC has announced the cast for season 26 of The Ultimate Fighter and it is an all-female cast. The women will be competing in the 125 pound flyweight division and the winner of the season will be crowned the inaugural champion.

TUF 26 will feature eight members of Team Gaethje and eight members of Team Alvarez and will begin filming June 19th in Las Vegas, Nevada. The season will air on FS1 beginning August 30th.

The cast features 11 fighters with UFC experience, 10 who participated on Contender Series, one Invicta FC veteran and one Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series veteran.

Joining Alvarez as coaches on season 26 are former UFC heavyweight title challenger Gabriel Gonzaga and former UFC light heavyweight title challenger Glover Teixeira. Gaethje’s coaching staff includes TUF alumni Julianna Pena and Eddie Wineland.

Here is this seasons TUF 26 female flyweight cast:

Team Alvarez

Karina Rodriguez (6-2) – Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series Season 1 veteran

Shana Dobson (3-1) – Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series Season 2 veteran*

Nicco Montano (3-2) – Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series

The Ultimate Fighter, a UFC reality show and training program from where many current and former UFC fighters have come from, will return for its 26th season in January. This season is unique for two reasons: All of the competitors are women, and all of them are vying to become the first ever UFC women’s flyweight champion.

The 115-pound strawweight division was introduced in 2014, with Joanna Jedrzejczyk defeating Carla Esparza to become the first ever UFC strawweight champion. The 125-pound women’s flyweight division was announced earlier this year at UFC 210, with the newly created belt to be won by either Sijara Eubanks or Roxanne Modafferi at the end of Season 26.

Both Eubanks (2-2) and Modafferi (21-12) have been involved in MMA for over 12 years, but neither has been able to make it to the UFC until now. Both were original cast members of TUF 18 (the first season featuring female competitors), but neither made it into the house due to weight cutting issues. Both were brought back as alternates later on in the season but did not see any action in competition.

On a Facebook post on Wednesday, the UFC announced the 16 women who will be competing in the first season of The Ultimate Fighter with all-female 125-pounders. The fighters were picked from an open casting call in Las Vegas for women with at least four professional bouts and two years of MMA experience.

The cast includes Barbara Acioly, Ariel Beck, Shana Dobson, Katharina Lehner, Karine Gevorgyan, Rachael Ostovich, Melinda Fabian, Christina Marks, Kristi Lopez, DeAnna Bennett, Lauren Murphy, Gillian Robertson, Montana Stewart, Nicco Montano and Maia Stevenson. A 16th fighter will be announced later.

All 16 competitors are signed to exclusive UFC contracts for the duration of their time on TUF 26. The show will feature 14 episodes and begin filming this month at the TUF Gym in Las Vegas. The series kicks off with a two-hour premiere on FS1 on Aug. 30 at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT.

The coaches have not yet been announced by the UFC, but former bantamweight champion Miesha Tate has been rumored to be a strong candidate after her coach Robert Follis died last month.

The Ultimate Fighter is back for its 26th season, and this time it will feature women’s flyweights. The show will also see a change to how the show works as it will be a single elimination tournament, with the winner guaranteed a spot in the UFC as well as a $100,000 prize!

The tryouts were held on May 23rd in Las Vegas and while they were open to any woman between the ages of 21-34 and with at least three professional fights with no more than five losses. The tryouts drew 126 fighters from around the world, including some notable names such as former Invicta FC bantamweight champion Raquel Pa’aluhi, who has gone 3-2 since joining the UFC.

As for the fighters who made it through to actually compete on the show itself, they range from top prospects to those who are looking to make a nice pay day. Here are all 32 competitors:


Shana Dobson (3-1)

DeAnna Bennett (8-3)

Karine Gevorgyan (4-2)

Christina Marks (8-9)

Chelsey Tucker (3-3)

Barbarita Santana (2-0)

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