MIAMI — The Four State Franchise is expanding again.
The boxing team promoted by former Miamian Tony Holden has added Charles Conwell, a member of the USA boxing team at the 2016 Rio Olympics.
Conwell was introduced during a press conference Tuesday, March 7, at Buffalo Run Casino & Resort.
He will make his professional debut April 21 as part of a boxing card at Buffalo Run.
“I just want to thank Tony, Lou (promoter Lou DiBella), my manager, my family and my friends,” said Conwell, who was an honor roll student in high school.
Tuesday’s press conference was the first time Conwell had a chance to meet his new teammates,
“I can’t wait to work with you guys,” Conwell said. “I want to make this my new home.”
Conwell is familiar with new teammates Ivan “The Beast” Baranchyk and heavyweight phenom Trey Lippe Morrison, having seen recent action on “ShoBox: The New Generation.”
“This a deal we’ve been working on for a long time,” Holden said. “To get a U.S. Olympian is like an NFL team getting a first-round draft choice. They are hard to come by.”
Conwell, whose amateur record was 134-15, was only 18 when he fought in the Summer Olympics. He was the Ohio Amateur Athlete of the Year for 2016.
“In the mainstream of boxing, he’s the one they are talking about that’s going to be the star,” Holden said.
The last member of the ’16 team to turn pro, Conwell signed with David McWater’s Split T Management late last year and has been on the market for a big-time promoter since then.
DiBella Entertainment and Holden Productions joined forces to land Conwell, who fought as a middleweight as a amateur but is targeted as a welterweight in the pro ranks.
“Style wise, it’s like fighting in a phone booth,” said McWater, who attended Norman High School and admits to being the only member of his family that didn’t attend the University of Oklahoma.
“I know that at the Olympic trials and at Continentals where he won the gold medal for North and South America, there would be a time in every fight where the other guy would just quit. They’d had enough.
“He’s heavy handed and is just on you all the time. It’s just like a bug right there. He’s always hitting you.”
Conwell is an 11-time national champion, the 2015 USA Boxing Athlete of the Year, a 2015 National Golden Gloves champion and a two-time USA Boxing national champion.
He was eliminated in the first round of the Olympics tournament, dropping a unanimous decision to Krishan Vikas of India in the first round.
“Lou was focused on signing Conwell from the moment he saw him,” DiBella Entertainment vice president Ron Rizzo said. “He saw something in the kid. I actually would see in his (DiBella) eyes that got him excited and he thinks: ‘wow, this guy could be something.’”
McWater loved the personal attention Ivan “The Beast” Baranchyk has received since joining the 4SF.
Dillon Cook, Kenzie Morrison and Jarrett Rouse of the 4SF will be included on the card.
Jesse Cook is sidelined following surgery on his right arm.
Heavyweight phenom Trey Lippe Morrison will pass up the April show to concentrate on a June 9 fight at the Turning Stone Casino Resort in Verona, N.Y., that will be part of International Boxing Hall of Fame weekend activities.
Holden said there is a possibility the show will be televised nationally.
Tickets are on sale now at the Buffalo Run box office and online at stubwire.com.