Rich Franklin had literally 24 hours to enjoy his new championship belt. Not only did he get the belt with his win over Evan Tanner this weekend at UFC 53, but he was also named the coach of the Ultimate Fighter Season II. Franklin flew straight to Las Vegas, Nevada where he is now coaching the new batch of fighter hopefulls. The tapings started yesterday for the show which will air on August 22nd on Spike TV.
There is plenty of speculation about who made the show, but the UFC will not announce what the official lineup is. A couple of names MMAWeekly now knows is on the show is Josh Berkman, the former college football player who was dubiously known as the guy Jeremy Horn spit on in a recent fight in Montana. Also Joe Stevenson, the King of the Cage champion is also expected to do well on the show as he is a King of the Cage Champion. Both fighters will compete in the 170 pound weight class.
Randy Couture was brought in as an advisor for this show. His role will be to create better challenges than they had for Season I….meaning you won’t see things like how fast the fighters can cut wood. Instead, it will be challenges related to training, like Couture had the guys go through running on treadmills etc. Basically, more MMA cardio training for these events.
The big question is whether or not Matt Hughes will actually fight Rich Franklin at the end of Season II. As of now it looks like the two fighters will not face off against each other. As MMAWeekly broke the story about the Season II coaches a month ago, we told you back then that they would not fight each other because of their close knit friendship with the Miletich Fighting Systems. Franklin actually trained with the Miletich guys for a few fights. TV does have a way of changing things and there still is a chance that they may actually fight, but as of a week ago, the plan was not to have the coaches face off.