Lane, III, Mills B. - Boxing, 1978
Lane made his niche in the sporting world as an amateur and professional boxer and professional referee. While in the U.S. Marines, the Savannah native fought as a welterweight, winning the Inter-Service boxing title (1957-58) in Okinawa and the Third Marine Division boxing title, qualifying him for the All-Marine Tournament at Quantico, Virginia.
After his tour of duty ended, Lane enrolled at the University of Nevada, where he captured the NCAA welterweight crown in competition held at the University of Wisconsin in 1960. For his performance, Lane was named recipient of the John S. LaRowe Trophy as the events outstanding boxer – an award comparable to football’s Heisman Trophy.
In 1960, Lane fought in the final Olympic boxing trials in San Francisco and made it to the final round of competition before being eliminated. The same year, he was voted Athlete of the Year. Lane’s amateur boxing record stood at 60-4 when he decided to turn professional in 1961.
As a pro, he won 14 of 15 bouts before retiring from active boxing and becoming a referee. He has refereed events with such fighters as Muhammad Ali, Bob Foster, Oscar Bonavena, Ernie Shavers, Bobo Olson, and Mike Quarry. A highlight of his career was refereeing the World Flyweight title between Elberto Salavarria and Betulio Gonzales in Venezuela. In 1974, Lane was inducted into the University of Nevada Hall of Fame.