Urijah Faber is without a doubt one of the most popular mixed martial arts (MMA) fighters in the history of the sport. At one point, he was even projected to be a major box office draw for Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC).
But after spending the majority of his combat sports career headlining pay-per-views (PPV), or at the very least getting main card love, the former World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC) featherweight champion will find himself in unfamiliar territory at UFC 175.
Faber's bantamweight fight opposite Alex Caceres, which goes down on July 5, 2014 inside Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, will be the featured fight on the preliminary card.
No, that's not a typo.
UFC 175 Main Event:
185 lbs.: UFC Middleweight Champion Chris Weidman vs. Lyoto Machida
UFC 175 Pay-Per-View Main Card (10 p.m. ET):
135 lbs.: UFC Women's Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey vs. Alexis Davis
265 lbs.: Stefan Struve vs. Matt Mitrione
185 lbs.: Uriah Hall vs. Thiago Santos
135 lbs.: Marcus Brimage vs. Russell Doane
UFC 175 FOX Sports 1 Prelims (8 p.m. ET):
135 lbs.: Urijah Faber vs Alex Caceres
170 lbs.: Ildemar Alcantara vs. Kenny Robertson
185 lbs.: Chris Camozzi vs. Bruno Santos
145 lbs.: Rob Font vs. George Roop
UFC 175 Fight Pass Prelims (7 p.m. ET):
185 lbs.: Kevin Casey vs. William Bush
185 lbs.: Guilherme Vasconcelos vs. Luke Zachrich
Before we start looking at Faber's placement in the line up as a demotion, let's first consider the possible reasons behind it.
The main card is stacked, featuring two intriguing title fights as Chris Weidman defends his middleweight title against Lyoto Machida, while Ronda Rousey defends her strap against Alexis Davis in the co-main event.
Matt Mitrione will welcome Stefan Struve back after his health problems in an intriguing heavyweight scrap, so that definitely deserves a spot on the main card. After that, however, the remaining two bouts are hardly PPV worthy.
Uriah Hall -- a man who hasn't exactly lived up to expectations -- meets Thiago Santos, while Marcus Brimmage, who is coming off a loss, faces a fighter with only one UFC fight under his belt.
Faber's fight versus Caceres can easily replace either of those two bouts on the PPV card.
Then again, UFC does have a tendency to schedule a pretty decent fight as the prelim's headliner in order to drum up some interest and snatch up a few last-minute buys before the PPV section of the event begins, which could very well be the reasoning behind the positioning of "The California Kid" vs. "Bruce Leeroy" scrap.
In essence, UFC is still using Faber (and his star power) for its PPV event, despite not actually being on it. Though it will be the "featured fight" on FOX Sports 1.