Philadelphia man’s unlikely rise from handyman to heavyweight

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Bryant Jennings is at an age when many boxers are already on the down-slide of their career but for this handyman-by-day, boxer-by-night his career is on the rise up the heavyweight ranks after finding boxing in his mid-20s. (Video still via NBC Philadelphia)

Bryant Jennings is at an age when many boxers are already on the down-slide of their career but for this handyman-by-day, boxer-by-night his career is on the rise up the heavyweight ranks after finding boxing in his mid-20s. (Video still via NBC Philadelphia)

“I have a pretty big dream.”

Bryant Jennings might not be a household name right now, but if the undefeated boxer keeps climbing the heavyweight ranks he could one day be mentioned with Philadelphia’s greatest fighters — guys like Joe Frazier, Bernard Hopkins and Meldrick Taylor.

“I have the quality of past fighters that came out of Philadelphia,” Jennings told NBC10. “I have that heart, I have that passion, I have that intensity.”

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But unlike those legends who threw punches for the City of Brotherly Love before him, Jennings’ ring story starts in his mid-20s after hopes for a career in football never came to fruition.

“I was kind of like shot down and reality kind of hit me,” Jennings said. “Had to get a job… A little bit later I had a child, and that’s when life really hit me and I realized that I had to be something for my son.”

What he did first was get a job as a mechanic and handyman at the Federal Reserve in Philadelphia — a job he remains dedicated to as he dreams of boxing a world champion fighter. Jennings even returned to his day job of the past six-plus years just 48 hours after a recent bout, according to Philly.com.

So how did the 6-foot-2, 220-pounder wind up in a ring?

Click here to read the full story on NBC Philadelphia.