Senior sports and recreational management student Brittany Rogers founded Bam Boxing Promotions in her senior year after choosing not to compete in the sport.
The daughter of an amateur boxer and someone with a lifelong interest in boxing, senior sports and recreational management major Brittany Rogers, is about to achieve her dream when she becomes the youngest female in the U.S. to promote a fight card later this month.
Rogers, president of Bam Boxing Promotions Inc., has been working since mid-summer to promote her first professional boxing show featuring fighters Ray Robinson (11-2, 4 knockouts) and Manuel Guzman (7-12-2, 3 KOs) on Sept. 30 at the National Guard Armory in Northeast Philadelphia. The show will include eight additional bouts with several local boxers scheduled to fight.
Rogers, whose father is former amateur boxer Mike Rogers, said she grew up watching her dad train. In 2008, Rogers decided to take up the sport herself and began training at The Front Street Gym in Philadelphia.
“I fell in love with [boxing] even more and I ended up wanting to fight and my dad didn’t want me to,” Rogers said.
Rogers balances the stress of student life and being a boxing promoter.
“I love the stress,” Rogers said. “I love the pressure. I love the whole idea of putting an entire show together and sitting down the night of the show and looking around and seeing a sellout crowd of 1,200 people or more. It’s a really good feeling to see people enjoy the show.”
“When I go home at night my body doesn’t hurt, my head does,” Rogers said of the stress involved in promoting the sport.
Rogers started working in the promotional aspect of boxing. She said she began to enjoy promoting more, but experienced a different kind of fatigue from the sport.
One of the most difficult aspects of Rogers’ job comes from insuring the fight card is set for the next event. In a boxing event, promoters need to make sure that they have a full lineup, or “card,” which means all the boxers need to be ready to fight on the same night in order.
“In boxing, if someone calls me the morning of a fight and says they can’t fight that night, I’m out of luck,” Rogers said. “I have nobody to put in that spot because they weigh in the day before, most of the time, and commissions don’t allow same day opponent-switches anymore.”
With her first show approaching, Rogers said her “biggest headache” has yet to come.
“I’ve had my whole card set twice already and I’ve had guys pull out,” Rogers said. “So that’s going to be a headache for the next two weeks.”
However, Rogers is confident that she will be able to get a crowd at the upcoming boxing event because scheduled boxers in the show are from Philadelphia.
“I’m looking to promote the local fighters a lot since this is a boxing city,” Rogers said.
Robinson, a Philadelphia native, will be fighting in the city for the second time in his career. Robinson appeared on ESPN’s “Friday Night Fights” and “ShoBox” televised events.
Rogers credited the two internships she received since her junior year when she transferred to Temple from Bucks County Community College. Her most recent internship was at Peltz Boxing Promotions last summer.
“One day I just kind of woke up and I was like I could wait until the semester is over or I could do [promotions] now,” Rogers said. “And God forbid it doesn’t work out and it’s not what I thought it was, then I’m still in school and I can find something else.”
Rogers said her professors, including assistant professor of sports and recreation management Joris Drayer, have supported her from the beginning. Drayer has had Rogers in a variety of classes and said he is not surprised to hear of her success in boxing.
“Besides doing excellent work in class, [Rogers] has always struck me as someone who has higher aspirations, so I was not surprised to hear of her new endeavor,” Drayer said.
“She’ll be working on a marketing plan in my class this semester and is the perfect example of what college students should be doing: tying what you do in school to what you want to do for the rest of your life,” Drayer added.
As a rising promoter in the boxing business, Rogers said that she has set more goals for her promotions company for after graduation. Her plans include organizing a possible boxing match to take place on Main Campus.
“I want to have at least six professional shows next year and possibly one or two pro-amateur shows,” Rogers said. “I am in the process of talking to one or two other companies about television ideas, but right now I’m just focusing on the boxing promotions.”
For now, Rogers is focused on promoting her first show, which she hopes will bring a sellout crowd. She recently launched her company’s website, bamonboxing.com, and said that she’s already received feedback.
“The School of Tourism and Hospitality Management students that I worked with through senior seminar are really helping me out,” Rogers said.
“I wish her all the best with this venture and trust that with her strong skill-set and obvious determination and ambition, she’ll do very well,” Drayer said. “But she has to pass my class first.”
Tickets for the boxing event are available on her website or students can receive a 10 percent discount by emailing email@example.com. All of the food processions sold from the event will benefit the Fox Chase Cancer Center.
Connor Showalter can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.