CANASTOTA, NY – SEPTEMBER 19, 2011 – The International Boxing Hall of Fame announced its flags will fly at half-staff in memory of trainer George Benton. He passed away this morning at St. Joseph’s Hospital in North Philadelphia. He was 78.
Hall of Fame Trainer George Benton
Born May 15, 1933 in Philadelphia, Benton was a top rated middleweight from 1949 to1970 who was known for his classic boxing skills. He posted a 61-13-1 (36 KOs) record and holds wins over Holly Mims, Lester Felton Joey Giardello and Jimmy Ellis. Following his pro career, he turned his attention to training and became known as “The Professor.” He orchestrated the strategy of Leon Spinks’ upset of Muhammad Ali and has imparted his boxing knowledge to such fighters as Evander Holyfield, Mike McCallum, Pernell Whitaker, Meldrick Taylor, Rocky Lockridge, Michael Moorer and Johnny Bumphus. For 17 years, Benton worked together with Lou Duva and Main Events as the head trainer for many of their fighters. In 1989 and 1990 he was awarded “Trainer of the Year” honors by the Boxing Writers Association of America.
“George Benton was one of the most knowledgeable teachers in the sport of boxing,” said Hall of Fame Executive Director Edward Brophy. “The Hall of Fame joins the boxing community in mourning his passing.”
In 2001, Benton was elected into the International Boxing Hall of Fame.