Which UFC Champion Will Be the First to Lose His Title?

Jeffrey McKinneyContributor IIIJanuary 24, 2012

The UFC has come a long way since its debut in 1993. 

What started as an eight-man tournament to determine which fighting discipline was the best in the world is now the largest organization in the ever-growing sport of MMA.

Currently seven men reign supreme in the UFC in weight classes ranging from heavyweight to bantamweight. Each UFC champ looks as though he could hold on to his title for a long time. 

But this is MMA, a sport where in a matter of seconds you can go from best in the world to ex-champion.

This leads us to the question of who will become the next "former UFC champion."

Anderson Silva and Georges St-Pierre are currently the longest reigning champions in the UFC and it appears neither will lose his title anytime soon. Junior dos Santos has had his UFC title the least amount of time as he won it back in November 2011.

One thing all three of these men have in common is they are currently battling injuries.

Silva is still banged up without a current return date set while St-Pierre and Dos Santos could return from knee surgeries anytime between the summer and fall.  

Considering these three men won't even get to defend their titles until later on in the year, let's take them out of the equation for now. 

Featherweight champion Jose Aldo has had his UFC title since late 2010, but Aldo has been clearing out the competition ever since he won the WEC title in 2009. Aldo has just about cleaned out the division, and it's likely the only way he loses the title is if he drops it to fight at lightweight. 

Like Aldo, bantamweight champ Dominic Cruz has been dominating his division since he was in the WEC. Cruz has similarly pretty much cleaned out his division and will meet Urijah Faber in a rubber match, where the two fighters are 1-1. Faber could be the only guy left to defeat Cruz in the division, but only time will tell if Faber can pull off the win. 

UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones is just began his reign last year. After defeating Mauricio "Shogun" Rua, Jones defeated former champs Quinton "Rampage" Jackson and Lyoto Machida. 

Jones has already defeated three former champions, but his real test may come if he ever meets Rashad Evans. Evans may be the one guy who can truly defeat Jones given their past history.

Jones may also have to face dangerous Dan Henderson, undefeated Phil Davis and a quickly evolving Alexander Gustafsson at some point during the year. It will be a tough challenge for Jones, but no one has really been able to make Jones look bad as of yet. 

Lightweight champion Frankie Edgar may have the toughest road of any champion. 

Edgar fights in one of the deepest and most diverse divisions in MMA. Edgar will meet former WEC lightweight champ Benson Henderson at UFC 144, and if Edgar can get past Henderson, he will have a long list of fighters waiting to take a shot at him. This could possibly include Jose Aldo, if he ever moves up, and Gilbert Melendez, who most likely will find a way into the UFC in the next year or so. 

So who will be next to lose his title?

The easy out will be Edgar, thanks to him usually being the smaller fighter and having tougher challengers waiting for him, but someone could make surprising cases for guys like dos Santos and Jones as well.

Dos Santos may not have a UFC loss to his credit, but he is fighting in a division where no one really holds on to the title for that long and has a seasoned veteran in Alistair Overeem waiting in the wings for him. 

It's scary how dominant Jones has been, especially considering he's only 24. But being so young could also mean he has a lot more to learn. 

Who do you believe will be the next to lose his UFC title? Share your thoughts!