As a professional boxer heavyweight champion Rocky Marciano was 49-0 with 43 knockouts. As an amateur he only lost once and that was to Coley Wallace by split decision in 1948 at the New York Golden Gloves Tournament of Champions in the semi-final. Wallace went on to win the championship over Bob Baker. Baker is being inducted into the PABHOF May 15th.
Wallace was the National AAU champion in 1948 defeating Bill Bangert. Also, the inner-city Golden Gloves defeating Clarence Henry who was later elected into the World Boxing Hall of Fame in 1998. At the 1948 Olympic Trials Wallace was outpointed by Novel Lee in the semi-final. Lee would go onto win the championship and drop down to light heavyweight to win the 1952 Olympics Gold Medal in Helsinki. He won all four bouts 3-0. He had won AAU titles in 1950 and 1951.
Wallace won both the 1948 and 1949 New York Daily Golden Gloves. In 1949 at the New York Golden Gloves Championships he lost in the semi-final to Bob Baker. He would then beat Jim Hillard in the consolation round.
Wallace would turn professional in March of 1950 winning his first nine bouts by knockout before winning a decision that was followed by two more knockouts. In June of 1951 after going 12-0 he suffered his first loss a knockout to Elkins Brothers, 27-6-1. He would go onto win his next five fights with three by knockout. In September of 1952 with a 17-1 record he suffered his second loss by knockout in nine to heavyweight contender Jimmy Bivins, 80-22-1. Three wins would follow with two by knockout.
Wallace then took on former NBA champion Ezzard Charles, 83-10-1, and was stopped in the tenth and final round in December of 1953. A win would follow before ending his career with two straight losses to Bob Baker in 1954 by decision. Then losses in 1955 and 1956 to end his career at 21-7 with 16 by knockout.
Wallace would go onto become a referee and judge. In 1953 he would portray Joe Louis in the “Joe Louis Story”. He was born in Jacksonville, FL, but moved to Harlem, NY where he started his boxing career.