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Foreman's son ready to rumble

June 5, 2009 |  1:17 pm

George Foreman is back in boxing. As a trainer. For his son.

George III, also known as Monk, will be at Coushatta Casino in Kinder, La., on Saturday to make his professional boxing debut against Clyde Weaver. 

The 26-year-old George III is a 6-foot-5, 240-pound heavyweight who worked to gain a business degree from Rice University in Houston before seeking to box as an amateur.

"Nobody would fight me," he said. "Maybe it was because of my name."

So, he opted to become a pro, telling his former world heavyweight champion father, who began training him last July at their ranch in Marshall, Texas, and at the George Foreman Youth and Community Center near Houston.

"Dad told me I needed to be willing to work hard, no matter what, to keep my hands up," George III said. "He said, 'If you miss with your left, make sure you hit 'em with your right.' And he told me to do whatever it takes to win."

To test his son's dedication, Foreman Sr. first told his son to go run 10 miles.

"Those workouts in Marshall convinced me he could do it," Foreman Sr. said. "I had him chopping wood for two hours a day. At the end, he'd pour alcohol right over the blisters. He'd crawl like a dog on the ground, pulling a Jeep."

Although Monk is a student of Sugar Ray Robinson and cracks that the only similarity to his father's fighting style is his smile, his father/trainer said his big boy is "heavy-handed" like the former champ.

"I had to put on that big body suit to take his punches, and even then, I'd have to go sit in a tub at night," Foreman Sr. said. "I enjoy it [training]. My wife forced me to do it. She said it was the only way she'd let Monk box. So I gave up fishing, but that's OK. It's exciting to be back here, starting from the bottom."

Foreman Sr. said he's told Monk he needs to get 16 pro matches under his belt. "In 2 1/2 to three years, I'll have a contender."

In this first challenge, Foreman Sr. wants to see how his son retains instruction in front of a crowd.

The pair drove from Houston to Louisiana on Thursday in a bus Foreman Sr. owns.

"It's been a great experience, getting his boxing wisdom," Monk said. "We haven't cut any corners. He wants me to have my own style, and my plan is to box, box, box and then finish 'em. Hopefully, the apple hasn't fallen too far from the tree."

--Lance Pugmire