Unlike many in his trade, Anthony Sims Jr. prepared for life after boxing long before landing his first punch as a professional.
While Sims’ long wait for his pro debut will finally come to an end Saturday night, that’s only part of what the 19-year-old has going on in his life as a pugilist, entrepreneur and college student.
Sims’ premiere fight was originally set for last November in Cincinnati, but it was nixed when his opponent didn’t make weight. Recent and unexpected entanglements for his initial foe for this Saturday necessitated a late backup fighter, and the bout will go off as part of a nine-match card at the Knights of Columbus, 1305 North Delaware Street, Indianapolis.
Sims couldn’t believe it when informed of the complications this week.
“Talk about going through hell,” said Sims, a light heavyweight. “My first fight didn’t go through, and then this, I was like, ‘C’mon, man, give me a break.’”
Most fighters live in the gym, but Sims is splitting time between workouts, business planning and the classroom. He’ll open his new boxing facility on 10th Street and Emerson Avenue after his debut, and is taking a full-time class load at Indiana State this semester.
“I’m not going to box forever, and I’m opening a gym, so I decided to go to school for business management so I could know how to run my business and keep money coming in when boxing is over,” Sims said. “I majored in business marketing also, so I could market myself as an athlete, because it all ties in together.”
Sims has classes three days a week in Terre Haute. Prior to training camp for his upcoming fight, he’d go to class, put in three hours at a local boxing gym, run three or four miles, do abdominal work, swim and shadow-box in the pool, do homework and then crash around midnight. In camp, he commutes to ISU for class but returns for workouts here.