Named 2016 “Book of the Year” by the West Coast Boxing Hall of Fame!
Read Phil Rice’s Introduction
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Becoming Taz: Writing from the Southpaw Stance by Jeff Bumpus is a memoir about pursuing a dream — of enduring the struggles, processing the failures, and learning how to assess the triumphs. Bumpus was a professional boxer from 1984 until 1993. During this time he continued working full-time as a saw operator, cutting countertops for mobile homes and RVs. He fought five world champions and several top contenders during his career in the ring before retiring with a record of 31 wins (15 by knockout), 8 defeats, and one draw. Becoming Taz is a tale of youth filtered through the wisdom of middle age and told with the literate voice of a seasoned storyteller.
In 2015 Jeff “The Tasmanian Devil” Bumpus was inducted into the California Boxing Hall of Fame for his inspiring effort against Julio Cesar Chavez. View Gallery.
A few critical comments from literary artists and fellow boxers:
“Jeff Bumpus has written a wonderful little memoir about his time in and out of the ring. The pain, the triumph, the humiliation; it’s all there, just like life.” — playwright Will Kern, author of Hellcab and Kid Sister
“Becoming Taz: Writing from the Southpaw Stance captures the fireball of creativity and energy that was Jeff Bumpus in the ring.”– Donny Lalonde, former World Light Heavyweight Champion
“I enjoyed this book by Jeff Bumpus so much! I recommend it to all my friends who are involved in boxing, fans of boxing, or anyone who enjoys a good book. Insights, humor, and truth. Get it NOW!” — “Amazing” Layla McCarter, Six time World Champion
Jeff’s book is an honest exploration of what it means to dedicate oneself whole-heartedly to a craft. His writing, like his boxing, is direct and packs a punch, never shying away from the costs and lessons born of that commitment. A wonderful read.— poet Virginia Smith, author of When I Wake It Will Be Forever
My interest in boxing goes back to Jack Dempsey, Joe Louis, and the Zale – Graziano wars. I can honestly say that I enjoyed the reading of Jeff Bumpus’ book Becoming Taz as much as I ever enjoyed any boxing match I ever watched. — Dave Easton, author of Leatherneck Sea Stories
“Becoming Taz by Jeff Bumpus is a boxing book, but also about human nature.“— Frank “kiki” Baltazar, esteemed storyteller and retired boxing trainer & manager.
Becoming Taz is a great book on professional boxing written from an insider’s perspective and a better book on life and how to live it without compromise. It is all about determination and character and setting your sights high, no matter the odds. Bravo Zulu, Jeff.—Marc Charles, author of Death Among Brothers
I love sports and this book gave me an up close and personal insight into what it’s really like to “live the dream” – good news and bad. I really enjoyed it.— singer/songwriter Paul Teerlinck (Strong and Steady and Build a Better World)
“Jeff Bumpus and I were both thought of as slow white guys who were easy to hit,
but Jeff had a very awkward style that was hard to figure out.”
— Greg Haugen, former World Lightweight & Jr. Welterweight Champion