Urijah Faber and Dominick Cruz will coach opposite each other on the upcoming 15th season of "The Ultimate Fighter" reality show before fighting in a rubber match next summer.
The UFC announced the pairing on Tuesday evening. The latest edition of "TUF" will be the first to air on FX and is scheduled to debut in March.
Lightweights and welterweights are scheduled to compete for two six-figure UFC contracts. Faber and Cruz will be the first bantamweights to coach the show since its inception.
“Anyone who knows me knows that I’m a gym rat and love learning and teaching mixed martial arts,” Cruz said of the opportunity. “This is a dream come true. To get a chance to coach TUF and beat Faber again is all the motivation I need. This is going to be an insane season of The Ultimate Fighter.”
“I can’t wait to be the next coach on The Ultimate Fighter,” Faber added. “I am looking forward to mentoring a bunch of hungry and talented fighters. The new cast needs to be ready to work hard and learn! Having Dominick coach on the opposite side couldn’t be more perfect.
"I’m not too thrilled about being in each other’s space for an extended period of time, as I am sure we are going to get on each other’s nerves. But I can’t wait to mentally beat him up as a coach, and then literally beat him up in the cage and swipe that UFC strap.”
Faber and Cruz have split their first two meetings. Faber originally submitting Cruz in the first round of a successful WEC featherweight title defense back in March of 2007. Cruz avenged the loss with a five-round unanimous nod over Faber in a UFC bantamweight bout this past July that earned "Fight of the Year" nominations from various outlets.