This past Saturday night Saint Paul’s Jason Litzau won the most notable victory by a Minnesota professional boxer in years, defeating world champion Celestino Caballero by split decision in a non-title bout. You might have expected such an accomplishment to earn Litzau some attention from hometown newspapers, the Star Tribune and in particular the Saint Paul Pioneer Press.
The Saint Paul Pioneer Press noticed Litzau in the sixth item of a notebook-type article that first mentioned Mike Modano, Marc Trestman, the UFL, U of M volleyball, and U of M wrestling, under the sub-heading of “Miscellaneous/Litzau wins split decision.”
The Star Tribune paid a little more attention than the Pioneer Press, placing a stock AP article titled “Berto Successfully defends WBC welterweight title with 1st-round knockout” on their website on the 27th, an article that gave Litzau just one mention, in the fourth of ten paragraphs. Then on the 29th the Strib gave Litzau a second mention, at the tail end of an article about the University of Minnesota womens’ hockey team’s victory of Harvard.
Litzau, a 15-1 underdog going into the fight according to at least one report, achieved a truly notable win with the victory of Caballero, and that’s what makes it so surprising that the local papers paid such diligent inattention. At least the boxing world recognizes what Litzau has accomplished.