Rock Newman, who manages the business affairs of heavyweight champion Riddick Bowe, is stepping down in class.
Newman announced yesterday that he will also promote undefeated lightweight contender Sharmba Mitchell (29-0, 17 KOs) of Takoma Park, leading to a possible title fight in May.
Mitchell, 22, a clever boxer, is ranked No. 1 by the World Boxing Council, No. 2 by the World Boxing Association and No. 7 by the International Boxing Federation.
Newman plans to put Mitchell on the undercard of Bowe's first title defense against an opponent to be determined on HBO, Feb. 6.
A junior majoring in business administration at the University of Maryland, Mitchell has taken on an entirely new management team this year, severing his ties with trainer-manager Adrian Davis, who groomed him as a teen-age amateur champion and young professional, and with Philadelphia promoter Frank Gelb, who booked Mitchell's first appearances on cable television.
When he and Gelb parted last year, Mitchell found himself temporarily barred from TV bouts. More recently, he formed a working agreement with Murad Muhammad, the manager of heavyweight Razor Ruddock, which, in time, led to his new partnership with Newman.
Mitchell is now being managed by Kenneth Wills and trained by Marvin Sims, with Newman arranging his future matches.
"I plan on becoming Maryland's next world champion in 1993," said Mitchell, hoping to follow Ray Leonard, now retired, and Bowe, who wrested the heavyweight crown from Evander Holyfield last month. Mitchell has beaten few notable opponents. Earlier this year, he won a decision over former junior lightweight champion Rocky Lockridge.