When the Ultimate Fighting Championship returns to Indiana later this month, there will be more than just a fight card going on.
As part of its visit to Indianapolis, the UFC will be holding tryouts for prospective fighters to be part of the 19th season of its groundbreaking reality competition, "The Ultimate Fighter."
The UFC will be looking for middleweight (185 pounds) and light heavyweight (205) fighters on Aug. 27 in Indianapolis, the day before it puts on UFC Fight Night 27 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
That fight card will air live on FOX Sports 1, the new cable network that debuts Aug. 17.
The opportunity for light heavyweights on "The Ultimate Fighter" is a rare one.
The show hasn't featured a competition in that weight class since Season 8, which aired in the fall of 2008. Middleweights were featured on Season 17 this past spring.
"The Ultimate Fighter" debuted in January 2005 on Spike TV, and in the light heavyweight finals of that first season, Munster native Stephan Bonnar fought Forrest Griffin in a bout considered to be the most important in mixed martial arts history.
The show remained on Spike TV through Season 14, but in Season 15 moved to FX as part of the UFC's new broadcast deal with FOX. This fall, the show moves to FOX Sports 1.
Neil Magny, who has fought locally under the Hoosier Fight Club banner, got his UFC start thanks to his appearance on Season 16 of the show.
He reached the semifinals and was one of just four fighters to be asked to stay on in promotion, where he now is 1-1.
Fighters interested in trying out for the show must be between 21 and 34 years old, be able to live and work in the United States, have a minimum of three professional fights and hold a winning record.
An application, which must be brought to the tryouts, can be found at www.ufc.com/tuf19.
The tryouts, which typically are overseen by UFC President Dana White and matchmakers Joe Silva and Sean Shelby, will take place at 8 a.m. CT at The Westin Indianapolis, 50 S. Capital Ave. Registration begins two hours earlier at 7 a.m. ET.
As part of the tryout process, fighters will be asked to grapple and hit pads, so appropriate fight gear is required. Following the workout sessions, there will be a cutdown process.
Fighters who make the cut will be asked to stay to meet with show producers. A final casting call will be held in Las Vegas on Sept. 2.