“The Ultimate Fighter 15” cast revealed with 32 lightweights; March 9 debut to feature 16 live fights

By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

The Ultimate Fighter kicks off on FX next Friday night with a new live format, and the UFC and FX today announced this season’s cast. While it was originally expected to feature both welterweights and lightweights, this season will instead feature 32 lightweight fighters competing for 13 weeks through this live season. The season culminates in a live finale event on June 1.

Next week’s debut episode on FX will be a two and a half hour live card to incorporate 16 opening round fights, with the winners making their way into the house to be trained by coaches Dominick Cruz and Urijah Faber and their respective assistants. Cruz and Faber will then square off this summer for the third time, and the second for the UFC Bantamweight Championship.

There are a few notable names on the list, including Myles Jury – who was forced out of The Ultimate Fighter season 13 after suffering a nasty knee injury while training – Chute Boxe BJJ coach Cristiano Marcello, and WEC and Bellator vet James Krause. The full list of competitors is below, and the live show will kick off on March 9 at 9PM ET/PT.

* Akbarh Arreloa (Chula Vista, Calif.)
* Al Iaquinta (Wantagh, N.Y.)
* Ali Maclean (Belfast, North Ireland)
* Andy Ogle (Tynemouth, England)
* Austin Lyons (Cordova, Tenn.)
* Brendan Weafer (New York, N.Y.)
* Chris Tickle (Bloomington, Ill.)
* Cody Pfister (Amarillo, Texas)
* Cristiano Marcello (Curitiba, Brazil)
* Chase Hackett (Littleton, Colo.)
* Chris Saunders (Long Beach, Calif.)
* Dakota Cochrane (Omaha, Neb.)
* Daron Cruickshank (Wayne, Mich.)
* Drew Dober (Omaha, Neb.)
* Erin Beach (San Diego, Calif.)
* James Krause (Blue Springs, Mich.)
* James Vick (Fort Worth, Texas)
* Jared Carlsten (Los Angeles, Calif.)
* Jeff Smith (Mechanicsburg, Penn.)
* Jeremy Larsen (Phoenix, Ariz.)
* Joe Proctor (Pembroke, Mass.)
* John Cofer (Hull, Ga.)
* Johnavan Vistante (Pearl City, Hawaii)
* Jon Tuck (Hagtna, Guam)
* Jordan Rinaldi (Matthews, N.C.)
* Justin Lawrence (Villa Ridge, Mo.)
* Mark Glover (Liverpool, England)
* Michael Chiesa (Spokane Valley, Wash.)
* Myles Jury (San Diego, Calif.)
* Mike Rio (Miami, Fla.)
* Sam Sicilia (Spokane Valley, Wash.)
* Vinc Pichel (Sherman Oaks, Calif.)


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