LOS ANGELES -- When Carla Esparza and Jessica Penne agreed to spend several weeks of the summer sequestered in a house with 14 fellow mixed martial artists, they didnt do it because it sounded like fun. Garrett Richards Jersey . They joined the cast of the upcoming season of "The Ultimate Fighter" because their sport is growing in ways they never imagined just a few months earlier. After years of training, sacrificing and getting punched for little more than personal satisfaction, they embraced the chance to showcase womens MMA to a new audience, even if it meant living in what Esparza called "a combination of a prison and a sorority." "Were getting an amazing opportunity I never thought I would see," added Penne, who was fired from her job as a boxing instructor during her stint on the show this summer. "In this sport, you go through people not taking you seriously, not being able to pay your bills because youre chasing a dream," Penne said. "It gets really difficult. Its a crazy, up-and-down life, but I feel lucky to be able to do something I love every single day. Not many people get the opportunity to do that. Ill suffer while I can to chase my dream." When the UFC added an entire 115-pound womens division this year, the promotion decided to use its long-running reality television show to pick a champion for the first time. The UFC signed most of the worlds top strawweights out of the Invicta FC womens promotion and filmed them living and training together in Las Vegas. The results air on Fox Sports 1 starting Wednesday night, culminating in the title fight Dec. 12. "It was a good experience," said Esparza, a wrestler from Redondo Beach. "I wouldnt trade it for anything in the world, but I dont know if I would do it again." The visibility of womens MMA has skyrocketed in the last two years with the ascent of Ronda Rousey, the UFCs undefeated bantamweight champion and a budding movie star. Rouseys charisma and MMA skills were the main reasons UFC President Dana White reversed his long-standing reluctance to promote female fighters, and Rousey has become arguably the UFCs biggest star. With Rousey topping a thriving bantamweight division, White decided to double down on womens MMA. Suddenly, 115-pound fighters who had barely made any money after years in their sport had the chance to become reality-TV stars and eventual fighters in MMAs biggest showcases. "I had no clue that this was even going to be possible," Esparza said. "I started off fighting for pennies. I thought I was going to fight for a couple of years. It wasnt something I could survive on. I was just fighting because I love it." "Through all my years of training and competing, I never thought of it as my profession," Penne added. "It was just something that I loved to do. I enjoyed and just never really thought of it in that way. I think Ronda did a great service to womens MMA and gave us that catapult to be taken seriously." The UFC appointed lightweight champion Anthony Pettis and top contender Gilbert Melendez as the coaches. Melendez has been a supporter of womens MMA since he taught his first all-women jiu jitsu class in 2004, and his wife, Keri Anne, competes in muay thai. "I was never like, Oh, theyre girls," Melendez said. "Theyre all gamers. A lot of guys fight for so many reasons besides trying to be a true champion. Some of them fight for what it brings to them. These ladies fight straight because they like it." The strawweights needed the UFC, but the worlds dominant MMA promotion also needs them. Even White acknowledged "The Ultimate Fighter" had grown stagnant and repetitive after 19 seasons of the same formula. Most seasons showcase up-and-coming fighters from regional promotions trying to break into the big time -- and usually failing. The 20th season showcases most of the worlds best fighters in the 115-pound weight class, and a title awaits at the end. "The Ultimate Fighter" hasnt featured this much top-end talent since mens flyweights and bantamweights joined the promotion three years ago in a season that featured current bantamweight champion T.J. Dillashaw, John Dodson and Dennis Bermudez. "I think there will be a couple of stars coming out of this season that can help the company," Melendez said. "And they can use it." Kole Calhoun Jersey . - The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are going to meet with Richie Incognito to determine if one of the central figures in the Miami Dolphins bullying scandal can help their struggling offensive line. Zack Cozart Jersey . - Chicago Bears general manager Phil Emery was so busy in free agency he didnt mind having a few extra weeks to prepare for the draft. http://www.angelsteamshop.com/Angels-Ian-Kinsler-Kids-Jersey/ . Geovany Soto had an RBI for the Cubs. Carlos Silva gave up one run on three hits over six innings to pick up the win. Josh Willingham drove in the lone run for the Nationals, who had just four hits.INDIAN WELLS, Calif. - Montreals Eugenie Bouchard advanced to the round of 16 at the BNP Paribas Open on Sunday after downing Italys Sara Errani in straight sets. Bouchard, ranked 18th in the world, hit 36 winners and needed just 75 minutes to dispose of 10th-ranked Errani 6-3, 6-3. The 20-year-old Bouchard won 76 per cent of her first serve points in the match. Her next match will be against No. 7 Simona Halep of Romania. On the mens side, Vancouvers Vasek Pospisil fell 6-0, 6-2 to Mikhail Kukushkin of Kazakhstan in the second round in just over an hour. It was Pospisils first match after getting a first round bye as the tournaments No. 25 seed. Spains Roberto Bautista Agut knocked out Tomas Berdych, also in the second round, beating the fourth-seeded Czech player 4-6, 6-2, 6-4. Berdych had won 11 matches in a row in February and is 16-4 this year. "He really handled the tough situation today really well," Berdych said. "But secondly, more important to me, anything I touched today was basically bad and was wrong. So really, just to recap it, definitely my worst match that I had this year. Thats it, you know." Two-time tournament champion Novak Djokovic, seeded second, was a 7-6 (1), 6-2 winner over Victor Hanescu of Romania in their second-round match. "I was not very happy with my performance but it was a straight set win," Djokovic said. "Im going to have to work very hard on the practice court to get better." Second-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska coasted into the fourth round with a 6-0, 6-0 victory over Annikka Beck of Germany, and 2011 champion Caroline Wozniacki topped qualifier Yaroslava Shvedova of Kazakhstan 7-6 (7), 3-6, 6-1. Rod Carew Jersey. . In the late match, No. 7 seed Jelena Jankovic overcame back problems to defeat Magdalena Rybarikova of Slovakia 6-3, 6-2. Sixth-seeded Juan Martin del Potro withdrew because of ligament damage in his left wrist. The Argentine player also pulled out of the Dubai tournament last week. Ninth-seeded Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France also dropped out, falling 6-4, 6-4 to countryman Julien Benneteau. John Isner, the No. 12 seed and the only remaining American from the original 14-man contingent, advanced with a 7-6 (5), 6-3 victory over Russias Nikolay Davydenko. Isner, slowed by an ankle injury earlier this season, said he feels good physically and mentally. "Its a situation thats very good for me," the 6-foot-10 former University of Georgia player said. "In the U.S., (on a) hard court that bounces high and pretty slow, and have the fans on my side, I cant ask for anything more. All the surroundings bode extremely well for me. So Im in a good place." He said he wasnt concerned about upholding American honour, either. "No, I dont," he said. "I guess yesterday wasnt a great day for our American men. But, you know, selfishly, Im just worried about myself, really. I certainly want all those guys to do well. But at the same time, its not my concern at all. My concern is myself and just trying to keep moving forward and keep getting better and get back to where I want to be." ' ' '