Inducted in 2001, Ken Norton began boxing in the Marine Corps while stationed at Camp Pendleton. He won three Marine heavyweight titles and turned professional in 1967.
Norton went 27-1 before getting the opportunity to fight Muhammad Ali at the San Diego Sports Arena on March 31, 1973. Norton stunned the world by breaking Ali’s jaw and winning the split decision in the first of three meetings. Ali won both rematches.
Norton challenged undefeated champion George Foreman on March 26, 1975, but was defeated in the second round. He reestablished himself as the top contender and was voted 1977 Boxing Writers Association Fighter of the Year.
In March 1978, the WBC bestowed upon him the World Heavyweight title. Norton retired in 1981 with a 42-7-1 record.