Middleweight contender Danny Jacobs, of Brooklyn, who has nicknamed himself, “The Miracle Man” after having overcome paralysis caused by a large malignant tumor on his spine, has launched a philanthropic foundation entitled, “Get In The Ring” that is meant, in part, to help to combat the disease.
“I started the Get in the Ring foundation because I personally saw the hardships people go through when I was first diagnosed with cancer,” said Jacobs, a 25-year-old with record of 24-1 that includes 21 knockouts.
“I didn’t have health insurance and it was very difficult financially. I decided then that if I ever made it, I would help people who are less fortunate, especially kids. Now that I’m in a position where I can help, I feel that it’s my duty.”
The foundation’s mission will be threefold, focusing on: cancer support, obesity and bullying. The three causes are close to Jacobs’ heart, and the boxer plans to raise funds and awareness for each of them as well as using his own life experiences to connect with and uplift others.
“It feels good to give back, especially to people who are going through the same things that I went through,” said Jacobs. “Cancer is hard on everyone, the whole family, and if I can help, I would love to do it.”
Growing up in the Brownsville neighborhood of Brooklyn, Jacobs saw the impact that poor dietary habits can have on a community, and the difficulties low-income families face to put healthy food on the table.
“I want to focus on obesity because it’s a huge issue in my neighborhood. People are poor, people are on welfare, and the food that they can afford is fattening,” said Jacobs.
“You need money to buy nutritious food, but being that I’m from a poor area, people buy food that they can make last longer. In my area, people have diabetes; they are obese and their health and nutrition isn’t up to par. If I can help fix these problems and change the cycle, I would love to be a part of it.”
After having a run-in with a bully as a child, Jacobs found the sport of boxing, and he wants to help give young people the skills and confidence that he found.
“I got in to boxing because I was on the verge of being bullied, but I stood up for myself. Bullying is a major issue for our youth today. It’s making kids feel like they aren’t important,” said Jacobs.
“I have a four-year-old child of my own, so if I can be a part of helping kids build self-esteem and not be as affected by negative things people say to them, then I have done my part as a parent.”
Jacobs won the fight of his life outside of the boxing ring last year, defying doctors’ predictions that he would never fight again.
After being diagnosed with Osteosarcoma, a form of bone cancer, Jacobs survived a nine-hour surgery to remove the tumor wrapped around his spine, chemotherapy and painful physical therapy.
In December, Jacobs won his second fight since returning from his ring absence by scoring a Showtime-televised knockout over Chris “The Irish Ghost” Fitzpatrick (15-3, 6 KOs), of Cleveland, who retired on his stool prior to the sixth round on undercard to the main event featuring WBA junior middleweight beltholder Austin Trout’s unanimous decision over three-division titlewinner Miguel Cotto at New York’s Madison Square Garden.
Jacobs was coming off October’s 73-second knockout of Josh Luteran on the first boxing show at Barclays Center in Brooklyn on the undercard of a main event featuring Erik Morales being knocked out in the fourth round of a rematch with Danny Garcia.
Jacobs’ anticipated return is slated for Feb. 9 on Showtime from Barclays Center in Brooklyn, where the main event featuring former champ Zab Judah’s challenge for the RING, WBA and WBC junior welterweight championships of Danny Garcia (25-0, 16 KOs).
On the Showtime Extreme portion of the card, Brookklyn’s Dmitry Salita (30-1-1, 18 KOs) will fight at 152 pounds opposite Hector Camacho Jr. in an event that will “somehow have a tribute to Hector Camacho Sr. as well,” said Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer.
Other undercard fights will include the New York professional debut of Staten Island’s 2012 United States Olympian Marcus Browne in a four-round light heavyweight fight as well as junior middleweight Boyd Melson (10-1-1, 4 KOs), of White Plains, N.Y.
PURSE BID SCHEDULED FOR JAN. 29 BILLY DIB-LUIS FRANCO FIGHT
A purse bid has been scheduled for Jan. 29 for the right to promote a March 1 clash between Australian IBF featherweight beltholder Billy Dib (35-1, 21 KOs) and Cuban Luis Franco (11-1, 7 KOs), of Miami, according to IBF Public Relations director, Jeanette Salazar, and IBF Championships Chairman Lindsay Tucker.
The contracts have not yet been received, said Salazar.
“We have a Purse Bid scheduled for January 29, 2013,” wrote Tucker in an e-mail to RingTV.com. “No one from either camp has contacted me about an agreement.”
DEMETRIUS ANDRADE MEETS FERNANDO GUERRERO ON FRIDAY
Also, in a match up of once-beaten junior welterweights, at The Paramount in Huntington, N.Y., Raymond “Tito” Serrano (18-1, 8 KOs), of Philadelphia, meets Emmanuel “Tranzforma” Taylor (15-1, 10 KOs), of Edgewood, Md., as partt of an event that is promoted by Star Boxing and Banner Promotions.
“All coaches get their fair share of calls, and I get some, too. Demetrius called me and we started talking. I’d been aware of him because he was an Olympian and knew he was a good kid, but once we met I was most definitely very pleased to make his acquaintance. I enjoy working with him,” said Hunter, of the Hunter of Andrade, a 6-foot-1, 24-year-old southpaw.
“Demetrius’ dad did a terrific job with him. He’s a great kid with a great personality and he wants to succeed. I think he has unlimited potential and everything it takes to not only be a future champion but an ambassador for the sport. There’s really a lot of upside to Demetrius. It’s just a matter of time.”
Andrade was the 2007 World Championships gold medalist at 152 pounds and represented the United States in the 2008 Olympic Games.
“I knew Virgil from him being in the amateur program, and I just reached out to him. He’s a stand-up guy and everything’s going smoothly. We’re just taking it one step at a time, just getting in shape for this fight.”
QUILLIN TRAINED WITH FLOYD MAYWEATHER SR. TO ‘DESTROY’ GUERRERO
Quillin, 29, is coming off October’s unanimous decision win that dethroned previously unbeaten Hassan N’Dam N’Jikam, whom Quillin dropped six times on the Garcia-Morales II undercard.
“I train to destroy anybody in the ring with me. I steadily moved up the ladder and won the WBO title in one of the Fights of the Year. Two undefeated guys were fighting for the world title, and that’s why boxing is so special. You can always look back at fights and find things you can do better: Throw more punches, especially jabs, apply added pressure, and move my head more. The key is learning more, and knowledge is power. I went to Las Vegas and worked a little with The Grandmaster, Floyd Mayweather Sr., to work on my defense,” said Quillin.
“I thank him for the help and my trainer, Eric Brown, for letting me do that. Eric says I’m ahead of schedule, work ethic-wise, and I could fight this Saturday. And I think, as world champion, I’m even more confident in myself. The belt has put a big, red ‘X’ on my back, but I believe the only person who can defeat me is me. So, I’m preparing the right way, and will be ready. I’ve hired another strength-and-conditioning coach, Robert Garcia. I’m working with Robert and Brad Bose to make sure that I’m on point, A-1. I have a great team to work with to become a superstar.”
OSCAR MOLINA RETURNS TO THE RING ON JAN. 26
Promotet by Promociones del Pueblo in association with Goossen Tutor Promotions, Molina will fight in Chihuahua, Mexico, where his family lives.
A 23-year old who was scheduled to fight alongside twin brother Javier (12-1, 5 KOs) in November, Oscar Molina suffered a setback when a painful cyst was discovered in his left shoulder, hindering his left arm in training.
The cyst has been drained, however, and Molina has been given a given a clean bill of health and that it shouldn’t be a problem in the future.
“I have no nerves thinking about my first fight. I am just very excited and can’t wait to be in the ring,” said Oscar Molina. “I’ve been waiting for this moment for many years and I’m ready to make my debut.”
The sons of former Mexican amateur boxer, the twins are also the of Carlos Molina (18-1-1, 7 KOs), a 27-year-old junior welterweight.
JOEL DIAZ JR. FACES IN A CLASH OF UNBEATENS
Junior lightweight Joel Diaz Jr. (11-0, 10 KOs), of Palmdale, Calif., will return to the ring Feb. 8 against Canada’s Tyler Asselstine (12-0, 7 KOs), at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, on ESPN2’s “Friday Night Fights”
Promoted by Yvon Michel’ss GYM Promotions in association with Boxing 360, Diaz, 20, will be after his 10th consecutive stoppage win against Asselstine, who is in pursuit of his third straight knockout win.
“I’ve been training very hard for the last six months waiting for my named to be called and now that time has come,” said Diaz. “I know this will be a fight where I will have to go to my opponents’ backyard and fight him on his homeland. These are the type of fights that can only make me better. I have complete confidence that I will come out victorious against Asselstine.”
KARL DARGAN SIGNS WITH MAIN EVENTS
Main Events has announced the signing of Karl “Dynamite” Dargan (11-0, 6 KOs), of Philadelphia, to an exclusive promotional contract.
Dargan is coming off September’s fourth-round knockout of Jesse Caradine, 8-1-1, 4 KOs) at The Prudential Center in Newark, NJ.
“Dynamite is one of the most exciting young prospects in boxing. His ring intelligence, power, skills and finesse gave me flashbacks of the 1984 Olympic team that signed with Main Events,” said Kathy Duva, president of Main Events.
“He would have fit in perfectly with that group. We are excited to sign Dynamite and look forward to featuring him on NBC Fight Night Future Stars on February 23.”
ANDRE DIRRELL TO RETURN ON FEB. 2
Switch-hitting super middleweight contender Andre Dirrell (20-1, 14 KOs), who is 29, will return to the ring for the first time since scoring a second-round knockout of Darryl Cunningham in December of 2011 on Feb. 2 at the Convention Center in McAllen, Tex.
A 2004 Olympic bronze medalist, Dirrell won by disqualification over Germany’s ex-beltholder Arthur Abraham in March of 2010 in the second round of the Showtime’s Super Six World Super Middleweight Classic.
That bout ended in controversy when Abraham was disqualified after punching Dirrell — who was far ahead on the cards — while he was down in the 11th round. Dirrell then exited the tournament, citing neurological issues.
Prior to facing Abraham, Dirrell had lost a split-decision to current IBF titleholder Carl Froch in October of 2009.
Photo by Ed Mulholland, Fightwireimages.com
Photo by Naoki Fukuda
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com