Jermell Charlo is a professional boxer who was born in Lafayette, Louisiana, on May 19, 1990. He has an identical twin brother named Jermall who is also a professional boxer. The twins began training in a local gym ran by their father at the age of 13. Since Jermell had boxing in his blood, it was no surprise that he quickly became one of the best amateur fighters in his weight class. He ended up winning the bronze medal at the 2005 National Junior Olympic Games despite only boxing for two years.
Jermell Charlo did not have much interest in an extended amateur career, so he made his professional boxing debut on December 8, 2007. The 17-year old easily got a unanimous decision victory over Corey Sommerville. Charlo went on to win his next six fights before boxing in his first match scheduled for eight rounds. The match took place on June 26, 2009, against Federico Flores Jr. Charlo had the first tough fight of his young career, but he still pulled out a victory with a technical knockout in the eighth round.
Charlo followed up the win over Flores with eight straight easy victories to end 2011 with a perfect professional record of 16-0. While he had won less than half of his fights via knockout, Jermell showed off his power in his first fight of 2012. He instantly knocked out Chris Chatman with the first punch landed to start the third round. Charlo also had victories over Denis Douglin and Dashon Johnson in 2012.
Starting his career with 19th straight victories awarded Jermell Charlo the opportunity to fight Harry Joe Yorgey on January 26, 2013, for the vacant WBC Continental Americas light middleweight title. Yorgey put up a good fight, but he was ultimately knocked out in the eighth round. Charlo added another title to his resume six months later. He beat Demetrius Hopkins by unanimous decision to win the USBA light middleweight title. This was also the first time that he had to box a full 12 rounds. Both titles were vacated before they were defended.
Jermell Charlo got easy victories over Jose Angel Rodriguez, Gabriel Rosado, Charlie Ota and Miguel Alberto Lozano to end 2014 with a perfect record in his first 25 professional boxing matches. He faced world title contender Vanes Martirosyan on March 28, 2015. Both fighters put on a good show, but Charlo ultimately won a very close fight by a unanimous decision from the judges. He beat Joachim Alcine by technical knockout in the sixth round in his only other fight of 2015.
The string of impressive wins over highly ranked opponents let Jermell Charlo fight for his first world title on May 21, 2016. The match was against John Johnson for the vacant WBC light middleweight title at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. The prestigious title was only available because Floyd Mayweather Jr. retired earlier in the year. Both boxers were rather inexperienced in 12-round matches, but the fight would not last that long. Jackson was knocked out by flurry of punches in the eighth round after dominating the first seven rounds.