He first put on boxing gloves at age fourteen back in Mt. Carmel, PA, and from that point on Mat Raymond was no ordinary fighter. His boxing skills won him a scholarship to Duke University, where he was to become a legend in his own time. During his career at Duke, Raymond marched to the National Collegiate Boxing Finals his junior and senior years and both times brought home the title. In 1936, he became Duke's first national champion by winning the 175-pound middleweight division in Charlottesville, VA. Then he duplicated the feat in 1937 by winning the 165-pound weight class in Sacramento, California. He was a member of the 1936 Olympic boxing team in Berlin and would have competed in the Olympics had it not been for a bureaucratic mix-up at the site. Upon graduation from Duke, Raymond joined the professional ranks. When he hung up the gloves several years later, he was undisputed Southern heavyweight champion and ranked sixth in the world.