Joe Frazier, Bernard Hopkins and Danny Garcia are all marquee names when it comes to Philly boxing. There’s no doubt about it, Philly is a boxing town. You can even go deeper into the rich history and dig up names from heavyweight champs Tommy Loughran and Harold Johnson to bantamweight legends such as “Joltin'” Jeff Chandler. However, there is one name that you should be familiar with, especially if you’re a boxing purest, Bryant “BY-BY” Jennings.
Born and bred in Philadelphia, Bryant Jennings was a stand-out athlete at Benjamin Franklin High School where he excelled at football, basketball and track. Growing up in modest conditions it was safe to say sports were an outlet for Bryant “BY-BY” Jennings. “I am from Philly man it’s been hard I don’t even know if Christmas is even Christmas,” Bryant half-heartedly jokes regarding his memories growing up. Maybe it was the natural born ability as an athlete, maybe it was the aggression from growing up in the harsh streets of Philly but the fighting spirit manifested within BY-BY until he found his calling.
As soon as the hand wraps where tightened and the leather gloves slipped-on, Bryant instantaneously fell in love with the sweet science and never looked back. Although considerately late in the game by most standards, Bryant started his career at the age of 24 and went on to develop a 13-4 amateur record. This doesn’t seem eye-popping or warrants a round of applause but what he’s accomplished on the pro level is definitely worth your attention.
With a record of 19-1 (10 KOs), Bryant “BY-BY” Jennings only loss came at the hands of Wladimir Klitschko a former heavyweight champ who has held the title in the WBA, IBF, WBO, and IBO. So it’s safe to say Klitschko wasn’t a slouch. However, Jennings doesn’t take this as a loss but rather a learning lesson and plans on coming back stronger and hungrier to cement his status as not only one of Philadephia’s best boxers but in the boxing world in general.
Currently training for his upcoming bout with Cuban phenom Luis “King Kong” Ortiz slated for December 19th, Jennings has been highly dedicated to his training and has rarely been sighted out and about in Philadelphia. In fact he has chosen Houston, Texas as his training ground, consistently posting videos of his workouts on Instagram.
Operating on a vegan diet which is pretty much unheard of when it comes to sports. Athletes are known for consuming vast amounts of calories to keep-up with their body’s demand, yet Jennings somehow tuned his body into a fighting machine with what most would consider a nearly impossible diet regiment. “All you have to do is educated yourself. Your body will tell you when your hungry. Your body will tell you what to eat. A lot of people don’t listen to their body let alone hear it screaming for nutrition. Who says we have to eat meat? Who says they have to eat all of those things,” Bryant quipped when questioned about his choice diet. For a person who has chosen the road less traveled it makes sense that Bryant has challenged himself in all aspects of life.
Obviously there is no crystal ball to predict the outcome of Bryant “BY-BY” Jennings’ next fight, but after getting to know him more as a boxer, a man, a Philadephian we can’t help but root for this guy to not only become a future world champion but to carry on the tradition of Philly boxing. It’s not a stretch to say that Bryant is on the path to solidify his place in boxing history as one of the great champions.