ARLINGTON, TX - JANUARY 19: Boxers Manny Pacquiao (L) and Joshua Clottey (R) pose for photos with Jerry Jones, owner of the Dallas Cowboys, at Cowboys Stadium on January 19, 2010 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
With Manny Pacquiao set to battle it out on Saturday night with Joshua Clottey in the first ever boxing match at Cowboys Stadium, Jerry Jones stands to cash in big on the popularity of the Filipino sensation; but, according to a story in today's edition of the Dallas Morning News, Jones had the opportunity to come in on the ground floor of that particular venture, just before the welterweight exploded on the international boxing scene.
Barry Horn writes that, while the head coach in Dallas, Bill Parcells introduced a friend of his from New Jersey to Jones. That friend, Murad Muhammad, a tailor and boxing promoter, was looking for someone to invest in a young fighter of his named Manny Pacquiao. Jones, who along with Parcells bought his clothes from Muhammad, decided to pass.
When the fight was announced last year, Parcells called Jones to reminisce over their meeting with Muhammad, and, of course, administer some lighthearted ribbing:
"You do know the fighter I was talking to you about was Manny Pacquiao," Bill Parcells told Jones. In a matter of seconds, both men were laughing.
Jones reasoned at the time that if the young fighter was as good as advertised, someone with a richer boxing background would have already discovered him. Which is a shame; if Jerry had made the deal with Muhammad those years ago, he may very well be a rich man today.
"I regret it because of the significance of Pacquiao," Jones said in the article. "Boxing has a great synergy with football, but I don't think I could have done it right."