Ranking all the DWCS Season 1 contract winners

Season 1 of DWCS produced a bantamweight champion but what about the other UFC contract winners?
UFC 269 Press Conference
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7. Kurt Holobaugh

As the first person to ever headline a DWCS fight card, Holobaugh knocked out Matt Bessette in three minutes to become the second fighter signed to the promotion from the show. The win would later be overturned to a no-contest due to Holobaugh's use of an IV but the contract was offered regardless.

Holobaugh had a decent amount of hype behind him upon entering the UFC and had a Fight of the Night debut with Raoni Barcelos, though the result was not ideal for the DWCS alum. Early in the third round, Barcelos found the knockout punch to hand Holobaugh his fifth professional loss.

Following the loss to Barcelos, Holobaugh would lose to Shane Burgos and Thiago Moises, the latter resulting in his release from the promotion. But much like Brandon Davis, Holobaugh would return to the UFC several years after his initial run had ended.

In 2023, Holobaugh would join the cast of TUF 31 as a member of the "veterans" team under the guidance of Michael Chandler. As a significant underdog in the opening round to Conor McGregor's understudy, Lee Hammond, Holobaugh would pull off a comeback submission win that would be the first of three on the reality series to make himself The Ultimate Fighter and earn his ticket back into the UFC.

Since rejoining the UFC, Holobaugh has gone 1-1, submitting Austin Hubbard in the TUF 31 finale but losing in his most recent outing to Trey Ogden at UFC Vegas 89.

6. Julian Marquez

Of the fighters on the list to this point, Marquez is the first who was signed off season one of DWCS and has remained with the UFC ever since.

With a show-stopping knockout of Phil Hawes in week four, Marquez was a no-brainer to be signed to the promotion. Four months after his fight on the show, Marquez would debut in the UFC with a submission win over Darren Stewart.

The following year, in 2018, Marquez suffered his first UFC loss at the hands of Alessio Di Chirico and subsequently took a lengthy layoff. His returning performance against Maki Pitolo at UFC 258 left a lot to be desired but nonetheless resulted in a submission win, pulling off a miraculous comeback in the final minute.

Marquez would follow up his return with another submission win over Sam Alvey but has not seen success in the Octagon since. The 34-year-old is currently on a two-fight losing streak with knockout losses to Gregory Rodrigues and Marc-Andre Barriault.

As of May 2024, Marquez has fought just six times in the UFC since signing with the promotion in 2017. He is scheduled to return at UFC Louisville against fellow DWCS signee Zachary Reese.