Duane Bobick

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Duane Bobick 1972.jpg
Duane Bobick at the 1972 Olympics
Rated at 94 kg (207 lb)
Height 190 cm (6 ft 3 in)
Reach 208 cm (82 in)
Born (1950-08-24) August 24, 1950 (age 66)
Little Falls, Minnesota, U.S.
Stance Orthodox
Boxing record
Total fights 52
Wins 48
Wins by KO 42
Losses 4
Draws 0

Duane Bobick (born August 24, 1950) is a retired boxer from the United States. As an amateur he won the gold medal at the 1971 Pan American Games and fought at the 1972 Olympics. He then turned professional and retired in 1979 with a record of 48 wins (42 by knockout) and four losses, all by knockout.

Amateur career[edit]

Bobick was part of a boxing family and grew up with the sport in the 1960s. A good puncher who developed well early by virtue of countless hours in the gym and ring, Bobick had an outstanding amateur career that included a win over Teófilo Stevenson at the 1971 Pan American Games. Bobick added another future champion to his list when he beat Larry Holmes to be named to the 1972 U.S. Olympic boxing team. But lurking on Bobick's amateur record was a devastating first round KO loss at the hands of future heavyweight contender Ron Lyle. Bobick was unconscious in the ring for over five minutes after the knockout.[1]

While being an amateur Bobick served in the U.S. Navy. He was a three-time Navy Heavyweight Champion, two-time All-Service Heavyweight Champion and two-time International Military champion.[2] He was touted as a rising star at this early stage, and may have been overconfident as he met Stevenson again at the 1972 Olympics. The fight was even after two rounds with Stevenson getting the edge in round one and Bobick rallying in round two. In the third round, Bobick fell victim to a nemesis that would bedevil him for the rest of his boxing career, the overhand right. Stunned, floored and eventually defenseless, Bobick was pounded by the Cuban champion until the bout was stopped; this was Bobick's last bout as an amateur.[3] By that time he had a record of 93 wins (60 by KO) and 10 losses.[4]

Amateur highlights[edit]

  • 1971 Pan-American Games Heavyweight champion
  • 1971 National AAU Heavyweight Champion
  • 1972 National Golden Gloves Heavyweight Champion

Pro career[edit]

Bobick trained hard to start his pro career, which did not begin until the spring of 1973. He trained with and was managed by heavyweight legend Joe Frazier. Bobick's first match was against Tommy Burns. He sent Burns to the canvas four times on his way to a first-round KO. Bobick had 14 other fights in 1973, winning them all by KO, including a win over former contender Manuel Ramos. Bobick won his first 19 fights by knockout.[5]

He had 10 more fights in 1974, winning them all again, eight by KO. Knockout wins that year included Ted Gullick and future champion Mike Weaver. He also decisioned veteran boxer Billy Daniels. With a 25-0 record and 23 KOs he was then rated as the sport's new "White Hope,"[3] taking that label from then-declining Jerry Quarry. Frazier himself was approaching retirement and focusing on upcoming paydays with protégé Bobick.

Bobick gained top-10 ranking in 1975 with eight more fights and wins, all again by KO. He was now being dodged by some, but a win over Randy Neumann proved he could not be ignored. He had a tentative contract with Muhammad Ali in 1976, but the fight never materialized. Instead he met and defeated lower ranked contender Larry Middleton, fellow Minnesotan Scott LeDoux, Bunny Johnson and veteran Chuck Wepner among his five 1976 fights, all wins with two KOs.[5]

The Norton fight[edit]

Having a 38-0 record with 32 KOs he fought the future champion Ken Norton in a prime time network television bout in May 1977. Both fighters appeared tight and cautious from the opening bell. Norton suddenly connected with an unexpected overhand right flush onto Bobick's chin. He staggered wildly unable to clinch and avoid Norton's furious assault. Norton trapped Bobick in a corner landing several roundhouse rights. One of the punches that connected was a right uppercut that caught Bobick in the throat. Staggered, blind from his tearing eyes as a result of the throat punch and walloped by another huge right hand, Bobick went to the canvas face first. He rose as the count reached ten. Duane swayed on unsteady legs and the bout was stopped. The fight officially lasted just 58 seconds, but the actual length of the contest was about 70 seconds. Trainer Joe Frazier had apparently advised Bobick not to take the fight.[6]


Despite the embarrassing defeat, Bobick was back in the ring two months later, winning a rematch with Scott LeDoux. He finished the year 1977 at 40-1 with 34 KOs.[5]

In 1978, he was upset in the third round by South African Kallie Knoetze for his second KO loss, again falling victim to an overhand right. Cut over his right eye and floored, Bobick rose at the count of 8 but the fight was stopped. He fought eight more times against second-tier fighters in 1978, winning all by KO.[5]

He was then looking to return to top-level contention in 1979 securing a nationally televised bout with future belt-holder and Stevenson's 1976 Olympic KO victim John Tate. Bobick talked openly pre-bout of his new commitment to training and conditioning citing reduced body fat statistics as proof of his seriousness to return to the top of the heavyweight ranks. Hurt early in the first round by an overhand right as in the Norton fight, Bobick couldn't clinch to clear his head and continued to move forward absorbing terrible punishment. A knockdown followed by a dozen overhand rights from Tate forced the referee to stop the bout a little over two minutes in the first round. A TKO loss (stopped due to deep cuts on both eyelids) to prospect George Chaplin later that year led to his retirement at age 28.[citation needed]

Professional boxing record[edit]

48 Wins (42 knockouts, 6 decisions), 4 Losses (4 knockouts, 0 decisions)[5]
Result Record Opponent Type Round Date Location Notes
Loss 12-1-1 United States George Chaplin RTD 6 1979-07-03 New Jersey Resorts Atlantic City, Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States Bobick retired at 3:00 of the sixth round.
Loss 17-0 United States "Big" John Tate KO 1 1979-02-17 Indiana Market Square Arena, Indianapolis, Indiana, United States Bobick knocked out at 2:25 of the first round.
Win 4-1 United States Henry "Bulldog" Patterson KO 2 1978-12-23 South Carolina Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium, Spartanburg, South Carolina, United States
Win 2-5 United States Tom Nickson TKO 3 1978-12-05 Florida Jacksonville, Florida, United States
Win 7-2 United States Terry Mims TKO 7 1978-11-30 Indiana Indianapolis Convention Center, Indianapolis, Indiana, United States Referee stopped the bout at 1:06 of the seventh round.
Win 19-8-1 United States Tom Prater TKO 5 1978-10-31 Indiana Indianapolis, Indiana, United States
Win 15-10-3 United States John "Speedy" Jordan KO 1 1978-10-09 Virginia Hampton Coliseum, Hampton, Virginia, United States
Win 17-9-1 Mexico Fernando Montes KO 3 1978-08-30 Minnesota Metropolitan Sports Center, Bloomington, Minnesota, United States
Win 8-10 United States Jerry Thompkins KO 2 1978-08-16 New York (state) Star Theatre, Nanuet, New York, United States
Win 36-8-1 South Africa Mike "The Tank" Schutte TKO 8 1978-03-20 South Africa Good Hope Centre, Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa
Loss 13-2 South Africa Kallie Knoetze KO 3 1978-02-04 South Africa Rand Stadium, Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa
Win 28-10-1 Puerto Rico Pedro Agosto KO 3 1977-11-30 New Jersey Newark, New Jersey, United States Agosto knocked out at 2:03 of the third round.
Win 21-5-1 United States Scott LeDoux TKO 8 1977-07-28 Minnesota Metropolitan Sports Center, Bloomington, Minnesota, United States Referee stopped the bout at 2:35 of the eighth round.
Loss 37-4 United States Ken Norton TKO 1 1977-05-11 New York (state) Madison Square Garden, New York City, United States Referee stopped the bout at 0:58 of the first round.
Win 12-0 United States Fred Houpe UD 10 1976-10-30 Nevada The Aladdin, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States 47-45, 47-45, 46-44.
Win 33-10-2 United States Chuck Wepner TKO 6 1976-10-02 New York (state) Utica College Sports Complex, Utica, New York, United States Referee stopped the bout at 1:12 of the sixth round.
Win 44-7-1 Jamaica Bunny Johnson TKO 8 1976-05-24 Germany Olympiahalle, Munich, Germany
Win 18-1-1 United States Scott LeDoux UD 10 1976-04-22 Minnesota Metropolitan Sports Center, Bloomington, Minnesota, United States 100-92, 99-91, 100-92.
Win 22-6-2 United States Larry Middleton UD 10 1976-02-06 New York (state) Madison Square Garden, New York City, United States
Win 31-5 United States Randy Neumann TKO 4 1975-12-12 New York (state) Madison Square Garden, New York City, United States Referee stopped the bout at 2:17 of the fourth round.
Win 22-26-5 United States George "Scrap Iron" Johnson RTD 4 1975-11-13 Minnesota Metropolitan Sports Center, Bloomington, Minnesota, United States
Win 11-3 United States Rochelle "The Roach" Norris KO 2 1975-10-21 Pennsylvania Philadelphia Spectrum, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States Norris knocked out at 2:59 of the second round.
Win 34-8-2 United States "Irish" Pat Duncan KO 8 1975-08-26 Maryland Largo Capitol Centre, Largo, Maryland, United States
Win 12-10 Jamaica Oliver "Twist" Wright KO 3 1975-06-25 Minnesota Metropolitan Sports Center, Bloomington, Minnesota, United States
Win 3-2-1 United States Ernie Lassiter TKO 2 1975-05-31 Connecticut Waterbury Armory, Waterbury, Connecticut, United States
Win 12-8-1 Argentina Reinaldo Raul Gorosito UD 10 1975-04-23 Minnesota Metropolitan Sports Center, Bloomington, Minnesota, United States
Win 19-19-2 United States Roy "Cookie" Wallace KO 2 1975-04-04 New York (state) Nassau Coliseum, Uniondale, New York, United States Wallace knocked out at 1:25 of the second round.
Win 17-30-3 United States Harold "70's Version" Carter TKO 2 1974-08-10 West Virginia Fairmont, West Virginia, United States
Win 6-5 United States Mike "Hercules" Weaver TKO 7 1974-07-26 California San Diego Coliseum, San Diego, California, United States
Win 7-2 United States Donnie "Admiral" Nelson TKO 1 1974-07-16 Colorado Denver, Colorado, United States Referee stopped the bout at 2:52 of the first round.
Win 2-4 United States Art "of Boxing" Robinson KO 3 1974-06-22 Minnesota Little Falls, Minnesota, United States
Win 18-41-5 United States Lou Bailey UD 10 1974-04-22 Virginia Norfolk, Virginia, United States
Win 23-19-3 United States Billy "The Barber" Daniels UD 10 1974-04-06 West Virginia Huntington, West Virginia, United States
Win 15-6-1 United States Ted Gullick TKO 2 1974-03-20 Pennsylvania Scranton, Pennsylvania, United States Referee stopped the bout at 0:31 of the second round.
Win 19-8-1 United States Jimmy "Old Rugged" Cross KO 3 1974-02-19 Oklahoma Oklahoma City, United States
Win 10-4-4 United States Jimmy "Slim" Summerville TKO 2 1974-02-05 Florida Miami Beach Auditorium, Miami Beach, Florida, United States
Win 11-7-1 United States Orville Qualls KO 2 1974-01-25 California San Diego Coliseum, San Diego, California, United States
Win 10-15-2 United States Rico Brooks KO 2 1973-12-06 Nebraska Omaha Civic Auditorium, Omaha, Nebraska, United States Brooks knocked out at 2:19 of the second round.
Win 15-18-6 United States John "Big John" Hudgins TKO 2 1973-11-24 Virginia Roanoke Civic Center, Roanoke, Virginia, United States
Win 11-13-2 United States Roger "The Dodger" Russell KO 5 1973-10-30 Pennsylvania Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, United States
Win 3-10-2 United States Orvin Veazey KO 2 1973-10-16 Connecticut Columbia Music Hall, West Hartford, Connecticut, United States
Win -- United States Ron Draper KO 4 1973-09-25 Missouri Kansas City, Missouri, United States Draper knocked out at 1:46 of the fourth round.
Win 24-23-3 Mexico Manuel "Pulgarcito" Ramos TKO 7 1973-09-15 Virginia Norfolk Scope, Norfolk, Virginia, United States
Win 8-3-2 United States GG Maldonado KO 2 1973-08-22 Minnesota Minneapolis Auditorium, Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States
Win 15-28-2 Canada Leslie Borden TKO 3 1973-08-15 Colorado Denver, Colorado, United States
Win 1-14 United States Ned Edwards KO 3 1973-08-08 New York (state) Binghamton Veterans Memorial Auditorium, Binghamton, New York, United States
Win 3-2 United States Sylvester Murphy KO 1 1973-07-06 Tennessee Bristol International Raceway, Bristol, Tennessee, United States
Win 13-4 United States Doug Kirk TKO 2 1973-06-15 Minnesota Saint Cloud, Minnesota, United States Referee stopped the bout at 1:16 of the second round.
Win 10-8 United States Clyde "Sandman" Brown TKO 2 1973-05-31 Kentucky Frankfort, Kentucky, United States Referee stopped the bout at 0:45 of the second round.
Win -- "Slim" Jim Williams KO 5 1973-05-12 Colorado Denver Coliseum, Denver, Colorado, United States
Win -- United States "Slick" Willie Anderson TKO 3 1973-04-21 Kentucky Capitol Plaza, Louisville, Kentucky, United States
Win 9-8 Canada Tommy "Side" Burns KO 1 1973-04-10 Minnesota Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States Burns knocked out at 2:59 of the first round.

Life after boxing[edit]

Bobick returned to Minnesota and took heavy industry work before a machine accident nearly killed him in 1997. Both his arms were caught and crushed between huge paper rolls being rotated in a paper mill. He narrowly avoided amputation after a complex surgery to re-attach muscles and tendons and repair skin and bone damage. After that he went into coaching and public speaking, using his celebrity to possibly encourage and help others. In November 2006, Bobick was elected as a city councilman.[3]

  • To be honored June 19, 2014 with his induction into the National Polish-American Sports Hall of Fame in Troy, Michigan.

Personal life[edit]

Bobick's younger brother Rodney Bobick was also a heavyweight boxer of note, though less successful, and died in a single car crash in 1977.[2]

Bobick suffers from chronic traumatic encephalopathy. Originally diagnosed in 1997 after his arm injury, his progressive decline has been noteworthy in recent years. He was quoted in 2011 by the Morrison County Record saying "I'm not sure I would have gone into boxing back then if I would have known all the effects of head trauma that I know today, but I don’t regret the experience, intense training and discipline I learned from the sport."[7]


  1. ^ Lotierzo, Frank. "Ron Lyle: The Only Fighter To Hurt Foreman In Maybe The Finest Hour For Both". The Sweet Science. 
  2. ^ a b Duane Bobick. boxrec.com
  3. ^ a b c Duane Bobick. sports-reference.com
  4. ^ Duane BOBICK. reocities.com
  5. ^ a b c d e Boxing record for Duane Bobick. BoxRec.com.
  6. ^ Fraziers autobiography
  7. ^ Slack, Patrick (February 12, 2012). "Hall of Fame boxer Duane Bobick faces his greatest fight". Morrison County Record. Retrieved 5 June 2016. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Ron Lyle
United States Amateur Heavyweight Champion
Succeeded by
Nick Wells