UFC Is Wasting Ronda Rousey’s Incredible Potential

Gary A. Vasquez — USA TODAY Sports

UFC had something great going back in February when Ronda Rousey made her debut against Liz Carmouche. At the time, she was getting more media coverage than Miley Cyrus is now.

Rousey was an A-Lister, with magazines and talk shows beating down her door. But now? Rousey has fallen from the public radar faster than Sarah Palin. Rousey was supposed to be the savior of “The Ultimate Fighter” TV show on Fox Sports 1, its new channel.

The show, however, debuted to less than 750,000 viewers — an all-time low. A lot has gone wrong with the how UFC has presented Rousey. Rather than portraying her as one of the greatest fighters in the world, the UFC has marketed her as the sassy chick with a mean streak.

First, the UFC dumped Cat Zingano as co-coach of “The Ultimate Fighter” after a knee injury, then brought in Miesha Tate — without telling Rousey. The champ was enraged at the television betrayal. Then, from what Rousey and Tate have both said publicly, Rousey comes across as crazy, manic and well, like a witch.

Rousey has fallen off the public radar. She’s landed a movie role, but she unfortunately hasn’t been the crossover athlete who has taken MMA into the mainstream.

And that’s all the UFC’s fault. Rousey is one of the most smartest, most articulate and talented athletes in the sport. She should be the face of MMA, not the hot mess of MMA. Rousey won’t even fight in the main event in her next fight. She will fight on co-main event under the Anderson Silva vs. Chris Weidman II fight at UFC 168.

If Rousey is smart, she will get out of the UFC as soon as possible and make the most of a career in Hollywood. She has great potential to be a transforming athlete in the sport, but if the UFC isn’t going to handle her correctly, she’s better off looking out for herself.

Joshua Molina is a mixed martial arts and pro  wrestling writer  for  rantsports.com. Follow him on Twitter @JECMolina and add him  to your network on Google.

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  • Ol’ Rooter

    When did the UFC become a farm team talent supplier for Hollywood? Ronda’s a fighter, not a glamor puss. Sure, she’s fallen off the radar a bit, but everyone does. She’ll get back up there when 167 gets a little closer to happening.

    Oh, while we’re at it, Ben Askren is going to mop up the UFC welterweights…discuss.

  • Please Stop

    This whole website sucks ass. At least the mma section. I just read two dumb ass articles back to back. Just stop ! Get intelligent writers

  • ArRoN

    It’s not rouseys fault tuf sucked. They moved the show to a 3 week old station called fox sports 1. The channel averages less than 90 thousand viewers over the course of a day. the show was never given a chance Plus the station is in 20 million less home than fx and spike

  • Real Raven

    This is the most truthful article I’ve ever read on Rousey. She is going down in flames and its almost like the UFC doesn’t care as long as they make money. She was so likable before, now with her immature antics and behavior, she is steadly falling from grace. Its like she can’t handle the pressure and no one is stepping up to help the poor girl out.

  • Marcus Twain

    most smartest…oxy(moron)

  • Lisa Magnooty

    Joshua – i couldn’t agree with you more! You are absolutely right on the money! The biggest marketing opportunity the UFC has ever had and their absolutely wasting it!

    When she came over from Strikeforce there were news news stories about her every single day! She was the face of mma, the biggest thing mma had going world-wide, bar none! The UFC has relegated her to a “just another one of many”, and you’re right, making her a 2nd fiddle to weidman – silva? HUGE mistake!!!!! Sure,. MMA regulars are dying to see weidman beat silva again (that’s exactly what will happen), but neither of them have any media creds or ability to market the UFC. Ronda Rousey was (and still is) a world-wide phenomenon, generating huge press world wide, and generating huge interest in MMA and the UFC from people who knew absolutely nothing about it previously!

    The UFC had the biggest golden goose they’ve ever had land in their lap! They have no idea how to market it, and they are just plugging her into the same cycle as the rest of the MMA fighters they have. They are wasting the biggest opportunity they have ever had, or will ever have!

    I agree with you; she should pave her path to Hollywood before the UFC mistakes with her remove all the bloom off her rose. If I was her, meisha would be my last fight in the UFC, and then “Hollywood, here I come.”

    BTW – If she goes, bye bye women’s MMA in the UFC. I don’t think they’ve (the UFC) figured out the reality of that either…

  • http://doyoubjj.com/ Do You BJJ?

    I am not sure if the UFC is mishandling Rousey or if it is just a matter of circumstances. I mean, they have changed the broadcast schedule over the last couple of years along with having it on new channels over the last 3 years – first Spike, then FX, and now Fox Sports 1. I don’t even get FS1 so I have to wait until the episodes are online.

    I think what a lot of it is is that we are now seeing Rousey more due to the show exposure where before we only saw stuff like fight prep. When we are watching someone so into fight prep we kind of overlook some of their drawbacks.

    Now that she is not fighting but coaching and investing almost as much of herself into it, it has to be hard. I know she has said before that after this season airs, people will have a different perspective of her.

    I am a wrestler from WA so I have always liked Tate, Rousey too. I did not know that she was so competitive though.

  • ObserverMI

    Hey Joshua, if you don’t mind…

    UFC didn’t ‘Market’ her that way, Rousy is acting like a spoiled, hot headed, unsportsman like powder keg, strutting around throwing temper tantrums.
    ‘SHE’ has created this, not UFC. No one is ‘forcing’ her to act the fool.
    Her coach doesn’t help any by being a splinter from the same Rousy tree either.

    Remember as well, that’s a ‘New Network’. Hello?… takes time to build a brand in a new home, let alone the home itself. In fact it’s beating every thing else in it’s time slot in all key demo’s. Still respectable numbers.

    And you really think the UFC machine is so inexperienced they’re mis-marketing her?
    I mean, they’ve only made MMA it the #1 fastest growing sport in the world, from a million to worth over 2 Billion $ in 20 years, with a fan base breeding to even younger youths worldwide, spawning tv shows, publicity events, gear, clothing, dvd’s and on and on yet…. it’s ‘Them’ that cannot market Ronda Rousey.
    Soundin a lil weak to me there Joshua.

    Weather it’s Ronda ‘One Trick’ Rousey, or Ronda ‘Champion’ Rousey, it’s up to her, who show’s up. She’s got December’s fight, the film opening and TUF all going for her. Depends on what ‘she’ does with it.

    So… your advice is for her to “get out of the UFC as soon as possible and make the most of a career in hollywood”
    Leave exactly what is starting to make her famous, that she ‘just’ became a champion at, top of the food chain. With all these endorsements, tv show, sponsorships, opening doors, pay days, exposure… your saying, ‘quit’ alllll that’s just starting to bud forth, for a movie career that is ‘only’ interested in her because of the ‘very’ thing you ‘advise her if she’s wise’ to leave, they want. Her MMA fans, made possible by…. the UFC.

    Well Thank Goodness she’s not listening to your advice.

    For the record;
    They didn’t “Dump” Cat, she couldn’t go on, hello?
    Not expected, nor could she bring MMA to the “Mainstream”. The UFC has been.
    Sorry, Anderson Silva rematch get’s billing over Rousey…. ya think?
    You bias against the UFC I believe is blinding your logic.