Born in St. Clere, Kansas part of Pottawatomie county, Jess Willard would rise to legendary status as the Heavyweight Champion of the World. As I grew up in St. Marys, just a few miles south of the "Pottawatomie Giant", passed down stories of his enormous stature and brawn cast him as our local Paul Bunyan-esque folklore hero. He acquired the title after a 26 round slug-fest with Jack Johnson in 1915. He lost the title a few years later in one of the most lopsided slobberknockers in sports history. Jack Dempsey put him on his back some seven times in the first round en route to defeating the champ. To this day, the "Pottawatomie Giant" is remembered as a legend on the back roads of rural northeast Kansas.