USA Boxing

Mar 07 Athlete of the Week: Juan Jones

May 04, 2009, 9:25 a.m. (ET)

Name:  Juan Jones
Age:  14
Hometown:  Akron, Ohio
Height:  5'6"
Weight class:  125 lbs.
Coach's name:  Omar Dawood
Club name:  Rock Hard Cash-Denton Boxing Club

January was a good month for Juan Jones.  He competed in the Ohio State Silver Gloves in Zanesville, where he knocked out his opponent in the first round of his bout.  "I've never done that before," he says over the phone.  You can hear he has a smile on his face when he thinks back to the event.

The 14-year-old bantamweight began boxing after his father took him to the gym.  A multi-sport athlete, Jones played football, basketball, and baseball, but decided to become a focused, one-sport athlete after taking up the sweet science.  And he has the same person to thank for keeping him motivated as he does for first introducing him to the sport.  "My dad keeps me on the right track to stay out of bad things and keep me boxing," he says.

Jones just began high school at Firestone High School in Akron, Ohio.  Although it is too early for the ninth grader to make any plans for his post- high school days, he has set some goals in the ring.  He hopes to be a part of the 2012 Olympic Team, but wants to get a few national titles under his belt first.  With any luck, he can continue his knock out ways and land a plane ticket to London.

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