By joining frats. Uh, what?
Roy Jones Jr. - who I've very quickly forgotten about - has an upcoming fight against Felix Trinidad. Even though Jones and Trinidad are both a bit on the washed up side, Jones is intent on this being a megafight that gets people interested in boxing again. And his solution for how to accomplish this is bizarre at best.
According to East Side Boxing, Jones joined the nation's largest frat to increase his fan base for the fight.
To further his celebrity and broaden his appeal, in August, Jones became an honorary member of Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity. TKE is the largest social fraternity in the world with a presence on almost 300 college campuses in
This is a frat whose members include the likes of former President Ronald Reagan, Hilton Hotel founder Conrad Hilton, Terry Bradshaw, Phil Simms, Digger Phelps and oddly Eric Bloom - the lead singer of Blue Oyster Cult.
Here's why it'll work, again according to East Side Boxing.
This is an interesting marketing strategy for the self-promoted Jones—give the guys in college a reason to watch boxing. The “hey, that’s our fraternity brother” crowd could provide a buzz among a demographic that currently seems more interested in video games and drinking games—18 to 23 year old college students. Maybe more boxers should follow Jones’s lead. Affiliating with a fraternity that exists on hundreds of college campuses provides an established fan-base of men who likely already watch sports. This could lead to wide word of mouth advertising in university circles, and could generate more buzz and attention to the boxer and to the boxing in general in the United States, which could use the help.
I went to a college that didn't allow frats, so I don't exactly know how much the "hey, that's our fraternity brother" grab-assing works, but something tells me this won't do much.
It's not that people - specifically 18 to 23 year-old male college students - don't know that boxing exists and that it needs to be passed along by word of mouth. The problem is boxing stinks in comparison to MMA. And doesn't have nearly enough ring girl wet t-shirt contests.
Besides, just because Roy is now a part of TKE, I don't exactly think that's going to make David Jones (former editor of the NYT) and Marv Levy (worst Super Bowl coach ever) tune into the fight.
However if Jones and Trinidad engage in a best of five, 10-cup Beirut tournament, I'll definitely throw down $50 for that.