"There's eight spots and there's thousands of 132 pounders in the U.S.," said Ramirez. "We're there for a reason."
Ramirez, 18, earned his spot in the U.S. Olympic Trials by winning his weight class in May's national championships. As the top-ranked 132-pound boxer, he knows the target will be on his back in Mobile, Alabama.
"I go in confident," Ramirez said. "I don't see myself getting defeated. But I don't go in there with that confidence that I'm going to win or I can take it easy. I always go in there strong."
"There's a lot that comes along with it," said Armando Mancinas, Ramirez's coach and Godfather. "Besides conditioning, you have to be mentally focused as well. [José] understands what it takes to reach the level of an Olympian, and he told me a long time ago he's willing to put in the work to get there."
Having a family presence in his corner helps reinforce Ramirez's belief that a successful Olympic Trials, could mean much more than just a trip to London next summer.
"He really wants to be a mentor for kids," Mancinas said. "He wants others to follow in his footsteps. So he's going to be a good role model for these kids that are coming up now."
"I'm going to push myself to the limit and be the inspiration for Avenal and Central Valley and Fresno," said Ramirez. "For other fighters, young fighters, to open up the doors. If they see me do it they're going to feel like they can do it as well."
Mature words from a Fresno State scholar looking to become the first member of his family to graduate from college. The road to back those words up starts Saturday.NEWS BY LOCATION | ABC30 BLOGS | DISCUSSION FORUMS
BECOME A FAN ON FACEBOOK | FOLLOW ABC30 ON TWITTER