Randolph had an outstanding amateur career. Randolph was a product of the Tacoma Boys Club amateur program, along with fellow Olympic Gold Medalist Sugar Ray Seales, and future world champions Rocky Lockridge and Johnny Bumphus. Randolph was trained as an amateur and professional by Joe Clough, the head trainer at the Tacoma Boys Club. In 1975 he was the National Golden Gloves Flyweight champion. He was a National AAU flyweight champion, and was the 1976 Olympic Flyweight Gold Medalist.
Leo Randolph's 1976 Montreal Olympic boxing results were as follows:
Randolph turned pro in 1978. In 1980, he challenged Ricardo Cardona for the WBA Super Bantamweight Title and won via TKO in the 15th round. In his next fight, he lost his title to Sergio Victor Palma via TKO in the 5th. Randolph retired after the bout. He currently holds the records as both the youngest Olympic gold medalist, as well as the youngest retirement ever by a former professional world boxing champion. At two years and fifty days, Randolph also holds the record for the shortest career for any world boxing champion.
After winning the World Boxing Association super bantamweight championship from Ricardo Cardona on May 4, 1980, Randolph made his first title defense versus Argentina's Sergio Palma three months later in Spokane, WA on August 9, 1980. The bout was nationally televised. Palma was not generally known to have an aggressive style or be a hard puncher, but he immediately went on the offensive from the opening bell. Palma staggered Randolph early in the first round, staggered him again, and then floored the champion twice before the round ended. Pressing his advantage, Palma dominated round two, clearly overwhelming the young champion. Randolph rallied in both rounds three and four by boxing defensively, but Palma reasserted himself in round five. Randolph was knocked down for the third time in the contest and rose on shaky legs. Referee Stanley Christodoulou counted beyond the mandatory eight count as Randolph stood groggily with his right hand draped over the top rope. He stopped the fight at 1:12 of the round, ruling that Randolph was in no condition to continue. According to an article written by Jim Benagh in the November 1980 edition of The Ring magazine, Randolph, a deeply religious man, said he did not have the necessary killer instinct to continue as a professional boxer and voluntarily chose to retire from the ring at age 22.
|WBA super bantamweight Champion
May 4, 1980 – August 9, 1980
Sergio Victor Palma
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