Irish Middleweight Champ Shares Life in the Ring with MCCC Students

On Nov. 4, Alvyn Haywood’s Speech and Human Communications class had an unusual opportunity to delve into the world of boxing. Thanks to Charlie Schlegel of the Maintenance Department, who arranged for the visit through the Hibernians, Haywood’s students welcomed Irish middleweight champ Matt Macklin, who shared his experiences in the ring and his goals for the future.

Macklin is 23 years old with a record of 15-1 and 11 knock-outs. Arriving in the United States last spring, he has won his first two matches stateside. Students watched video of his second fight on Oct. 28, when his opponent quit the ring in the second round, before peppering Macklin with questions about his physical and mental preparation for the ring.

What is his training regime? What does he eat? What does he do on the day of a fight?
Perhaps their last question had the most resonance. What happened when he suffered his first and only defeat?

“It was only my fourth fight,” Macklin said. “I wasn’t really ready. A loss at that stage was a good thing. I learned a lot. The good times are ecstatic, but the bad times are rock bottom. You have to have the character to come back from a defeat.”

Likening himself to a mountaineer, he said, “The key for me is to be world champion.” Macklin will fight again on March 16 at Madison Square Garden.

Matt Macklin in class with Alvyn Haywood.
Charlie Schlegel, Matt Macklin with visiting professor Mel Leipzig and Alvyn Haywood.