On the UFC 158 prelim show on Fuel TV, UFC President Dana White announced that the next season of the Ultimate Fighter would feature both men and women in the bantamweight division. This will be the first time women are featured on the show and it was a no-brainer that champion Ronda Rousey would coach.
Rousey recently spoke to Brain Mazique of B/R and opened up a little bit about what having this role means to her:
BM: Most successful people aren't shocked with their success because part of being successful is working hard and expecting to succeed.
But I wrote an article before the Carmouche fight in which I talked about how much pressure it seems is on your shoulders considering most MMA fans associate women in MMA with you.
That may be unfair, but if you were to lose early in your career, it would be a big blow to the sport. Do you acknowledge that, and if so, how does that make you feel?
RR: Yeah, I acknowledge that I have a lot of responsibility, but I think that's part of what makes TUF 18 such a great idea.
It's going to bring a lot of other women visibility and have the fans get to know them so I don't have the lion's share of the marketing anymore.
I want women's MMA to thrive and be here to stay. I don't want it to be dependent on one person. You don't hear about if Anderson Silva loses they may get rid of his entire division.
You know, that's not something anyone even talks about. That's how I want women's MMA to be. I want it to be where if I retire, fans will be like, "Whatever, we have several other people coming up that we know."
This TUF is the perfect way to address that issue and take a lot of the load off of my shoulders and share it with the other girls that not only need it, but they want it and are willing to fight for it.
read entire interview...