Posted by George Hanson., Jr Esq. on Nov 26, 2013
Finding Sergeant Folly

Finding Sergeant Folly

The Mouthpiece 
George H. Hanson Jr., Esq
November 24, 2013

September 15, 2212 (Las Vegas, Nevada) – On the second day of the World Boxing Draft (WBD) with the first pick, the United States Boxing League (USBL) selected Jamaican welterweight Jack “The Axe Man” Hanson signing the twenty-year-old knockout sensation to a 10-year contract valued at over $10 billion.  Hanson who hails from New Forest, Manchester, Jamaica took the Gold Medal at the recent Olympics in Lagos, Nigeria stopping all six of his opponents in the first round. Unlike most top picks he will not be relocating to Philadelphia, opting to stay home in Manchester training at the Jack Johnson Boxing Academy.  

November 15, 2013 – Listen folks, the future is already here but we continue to be dismissive because it lacks formality and structure. Had there been a boxing draft in 2012 similar to those in every major sport, noted boxing advisor—Al Haymon—and his cohorts would have made 21-year-old Philadelphia junior-featherweight Emmanuel Folly the first pugilist taken in the opening round! The 5 feet 7 inch boxer is a picture of poise, power, precision and pugnacity—the metamorphosis of Joltin’ Jeff Chandler, Ricardo “Finito” Lopez and Guillermo “El Chacal” Rigondeaux. There is no question that his style was more suited for the punch-for-pay ranks—eons ahead of the 2012 United States Olympic Boxing team.  My eyes don’t lie because the majority of Olympians remain paid amateurs having difficulty shedding the vestiges of the point-scoring system which embraces standing like a praying mantis while fencing with boxing gloves.

 

A victorious Folly (April 26, 2013)

A victorious Folly (4/26/13)

There are many similarities between a champion boxer and a great NFL quarterback. Decision making, timing and accuracy are tantamount to their success. The Seattle Seahawks’ quarterback Russell Wilson—diminutive by NFL standards—taken in the second round in 2012— is the gridiron equivalent of Emmanuel Folly. Like Wilson, Folly is a small man, virtually unknown, supremely talented, has impeccable timing and makes all the right moves at the opportune time on the field of combat. They know how to hang in the pocket and deliver with power and uncanny accuracy. However, they both are adept at using lateral movement to evade punishment—offensive sedulity disguised as defensive wizardry. Wilson will win a Super Bowl. And there is no doubt that Folly will win a world title.

Born and raised in the Kensington section of Philadelphia, the affable Folly was the last of seven children—all boys—of Irvin and Connie Folly.  He is proud to recount that he grew up in a Christian household in which his parents read and lead by the Bible. It was with his brothers and the kids in the neighborhood that he found himself donning the boxing gloves for some friendly competition on the block or in the backyard. It was his eldest brother, Irvin Jr. — affectionately known as Neak—who acted as de-facto boxing commissioner, trainer and referee for these sparring sessions in the young pugilist’s formative years.

On a fortuitous day Pastor Buddy Osborn discovered a well-mannered thirteen-year-old Folly playing flag-football and invited him to Rock Ministries—a haven where the gospel and the gloves exist in harmony. Under Osborn’s tutelage and guidance, Folly won the Ringside championship in 2007 and 2008; the Pennsylvania State Golden Gloves championship in 2009; and moved on to take a bronze medal at the Nationals. He captured gold in the National under 19 competition in 2010.  And on April 26th of this year, Folly became Rock Ministries’ first boxer to join the punch-for-pay ranks stopping Elvin Rodriguez in the second round.

Trainer Buddy Osborn and Folly

Trainer Buddy Osborn and Folly.

I was ringside at the National Guard Armory in Philadelphia for Folly’s debut and was impressed with the manner in which he displayed his pugilistic prowess. He was a gloved surgeon dissecting his opponent with poised precision—dismantling him like a seasoned professional forcing the referee to halt the carnage in the second round. Unfortunately Irvin Jr. was absent from his baby brother’s shining moment—gunned down nine days earlier in a senseless act of violence by an 18-year-old with total disregard for humanity. But, spiritually he was in the ring with Folly— his name emblazoned on his brother’s waistband—forever etched in his heart and mind fueling his desire and quest for greatness.

Not only is Folly an exceptional pugilist but he is also a special high integrity young man. Driven by his childhood dream to become a police officer, as a teenager he joined the Philadelphia Police Explorer Cadet Program—which offers training to young adults ages 14-20 who are interested in careers in law enforcement. The young boxer rose to the rank of sergeant and last week he completed the final leg of his application for the police academy by taking the polygraph test. Folly unlike so many professional athletes is pursuing two careers. At this stage he is light years ahead of former light-heavyweight champion Bob Foster, who upon retiring from the ring joined the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Department in his hometown of Albuquerque, New Mexico and became a detective.

On October 25th again I found myself ringside at the National Guard Armory to witness Folly’s second professional bout against Jesus Gonzales.  Dressed in an exquisite blue and silver outfit adorned with glitter, the tall, thin fighter resembled a gloved matador as he jabbed, using angles to befuddle his southpaw adversary who was firmly planted in the role of El Toro. Like Spain’s most charismatic bullfighter —the death defying José Tomás—Folly sidestepped inching out of danger staying close to his opponent doling out punishment with rapid fluidity. It was a masterful display of the sweet science that flowed to the fourth and final round in which Folly deposited Gonzales to the canvas with a blistering right.  The fight should have ended, but the courageous Gonzales rose on unsteady legs and was blitzed with a combination that had him falling forward eventually landing on his tormentor’s shoulder slumping for a split-second, the final bell rescuing him from an inevitable knockout.  No surprise as Folly captured a lop-sided unanimous decision.

Let me not be the rooster who takes credit for the dawn. Folly remains focused under the direction of Osborn and his two strength and conditioning coaches—Ron Rivera and Gamet Argaw. He continues to refine and hone his skills sedulous in his pursuit of excellence like his boxing idol, the great Sugar Ray Leonard. However, someone has to comment on the absurdity that a talent such as Folly remains a free-agent—unsigned to a promotional contract.  Maybe this is the process of finding Sergeant Folly!

Continue to support the sweet science, and remember, always carry your mouthpiece!

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About George Hanson., Jr Esq.

George Hanson., Jr Esq. has written 106 post in this blog.

Hailing from New Forest, Jamaica, Hanson started boxing as a teenager in Philadelphia under the tutelage of former welterweight contender, Dick Turner. He excelled, capturing four Pennsylvania State Amateur Championships—his last while a junior at Drexel University studying Accounting. According to most who have seen Hanson fight, “He is the best fighter never to have turned professional.”



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