On August 5 of this month, the USA Boxing Olympic trials wrapped up in Mobile, Ala., with few real surprises among the victors. Now, coach Joe Zanders moves forward with these 10 young men, who are one step closer to the 2012 Olympics in London.
Correa, 18, was the 2010 California PAL champion, and defeated Santos Vasquez (Sparks, Nev.) in the final bout on a 22-18 score. Correa says his favorite TV show is Spongebob, which is a little weird, and says his jab is his best weapon inside the ring.
Warren, 24, is the veteran of the squad, and is looking to become the first three-time Olympian in USA boxing history, having competed in the 2004 and 2008 games. He was the 2007 World Amateur Championships gold medalist in Chicago, and won bronze at the 2005 event in Mianyang. Warren defeated Shawn Simpson (Chicago), 31-18, to earn the chance at another Olympics.
Diaz will turn 19 in November, and was also the 2010 USA Boxing national champion, in addition to the Desert Showdown champion in 2008 and 2009, and the California Golden Gloves and national Silver Gloves champion in 2007. Diaz defeated O'Shanique Foster (Orange, Tex.) by a score of 17-14, in a fight that was even after the first two rounds and went down to the wire.
The highly-touted Ramirez defeated 2008 Olympian Raynell Williams, 21-16, to advance to the qualifiers. He's been winning competitions since 2005, when he was in the 90-pound division, and was the 2008 and 2009 Jr. Olympic national champion at 119 and 125.
Herring lives in Camp Lejuene in North Carolina, which is a site familiar to boxing fans as one of the Marine Corps bases that generally holds boxing shows on ESPN2 in November. Herring turns 26 in October, and was the 2011 Armed Forces champion.
Spence, 21, says his favorite thing about boxing is "winning." Can't argue with that, I guess. He defeated Amir Imam (Albany, N.Y.) on a score of 24-19. He won he 2008 under-19 national title, as well as the 2009 U.S. national title.
The 6'3" Hart won the National Golden Gloves competition this year, and defeated Milwaukee's Luis Arias (21-6) in what was reported as a very impressive performance to win the Olympic trials. He dominated each round, avenging a defeat to Arias at the 2010 National Championships.
Browne, 20, got a tough test from Siju Shabazz (Las Cruces, N.M.), holding him off in the third round to win on a 14-12 score. Browne is trained by Gary Stark at the Park Hill Boxing Club.
Hunter is the son of the late Mike "The Bounty" Hunter, who was a heavyweight fringe contender in the early 1990s. The son is looking to compete in the Olympics as well as go to college, and has also had success as a basketball player in his teen years.
Thompson, 23, lists his favorite movies as Anchorman, Talladega Nights, and...Zeitgest. He's originally from Long Island and fought in Florida early in his amateur career, but is now listed as fighting out of Kansas. In 2009, he won the Golden Gloves, National PAL, and Ringside championships, and in 2010 was the USA National champion, as well as silver medalist in the Golden Gloves.