William Langston doesn’t need any more amateur bouts to take the next step in pursuing his dream. He wants the big time and he wants it now.
In an interview Wednesday afternoon, Langston told Madison365 that his amateur career is over and he is joining the ranks of professional boxing. He is currently ranked number one in Wisconsin at 178 pounds, but it’s more than just ranking that makes Langston believe he’s ready.
During his fast amateur career he has proven to be head and shoulders above most of the competition he has had placed in front of him. In November of last year he won his first fight by TKO in only the second round. He won another bout by unanimous decision over a fighter who had more than three times as many fights under his belt.
Then, at Wisconsin Golden Gloves earlier this month, Langston bludgeoned his opponent and delivered a first round knockout.
“I’ve been traveling. I went to Hammond, in Indiana. I went to Libertyville,” Langston told Madison365. “I beat this guy who had 13 fights and I beat him by unanimous decision. That sealed the deal, but then Golden Gloves came. I was like, ‘I know I’m going to win’. They registered me as a novice and as you saw I beat him in the first round. That was really good at Golden Gloves. I went out there and my mindset was to stay focused, stay calm. All the conditioning training got me ready for that. I didn’t even know the dude I fought was 5-0 at the time. I just said ‘It ain’t gonna be me. I can’t go home with that L.’”
Langston went to a gym in Milwaukee where one of his friends, who is already a pro, trains and Langston sparred with some of the professional fighters there. It was then that he decided he needed to turn professional.
“I sparred with some of the pros and their coach asked me what I would think about going pro. I told him that I thought I had to have five fights [to be eligible]. He was like ‘No, you can turn pro right now.’ He said I have a lot of natural talent.”
Langston grew up in the Kenosha area with six sisters. His grandfather was a community activist and reverend. Langston played football throughout his childhood and began to take up boxing when he was 15 in response to all the fights he had gotten into growing up in a rough area. At first, Langston wasn’t able to find anyone to face him in the ring and he quit.
Langston has had ample training time with some of the best fighters around. He trains regularly with top ranked Luis Alvarado, an Olympic hopeful also from Kenosha. He also has sparred with pros like Chris Ousley, a native of Chicago who recently moved to Madison.
“It most definitely takes up a lot of my time,” Langston said. “You gotta stay dedicated. It was always something I wanted to do. I just put a lot into it and gave it my all.”
Langston will make his professional debut on April 20 against Eric Plumeri at Marina Shores in Kenosha. Doors open at 7pm and tickets are $35.
Langston is working on developing his own brand and gathering sponsors. A big win in his debut might boost his profile immediately, especially with his local Kenosha ties.
“I’m just hoping to keep fighting and stay active. Go undefeated! I’m not trying to take any losses,” he said. “I want to climb the ladder. The championship belts in my weight class are vacant. I’m just trying to move up in the rankings.”
Langston, who is creating a logo for himself, will be fighting under the moniker “The Kid.”
But anyone who saw him fight at Wisconsin Golden Gloves knows he’s anything but that.