NORMAN — The fortune from the cookie remains tucked in Austin Woods' wallet.
He didn't know it was lucky when he first put it there on July 1.
Offensive lineman Bronson Irwin and former offensive lineman Brian Lepak, along with Woods, went to the Asian Buffet in Norman near 12th Street and received their customary fortune cookie at the end of the meal.
Woods read his fortune, calculated the date in his head and tucked it away.
His fortune read, “Remember three months from this date, good things are in store for you.”
Since the spring football game, Oklahoma's backup right guard has battled Hodgkin lymphoma. He went through chemotherapy treatments throughout the summer, preseason and once school started. He missed one or two practices during the preseason because of treatment. He missed a couple more during season for the same reason.
Woods knew in July that if everything remained on track and his scans continued to come back with excellent reports, he would end his chemotherapy around the start of October. But he still had many treatments to go.
In order to raise awareness, the offensive line stepped up in support of Woods. Fellow lineman Gabe Ikard created jersey-like tank tops. On the front it said, “Beat Cancer.” The back had No. 50. Fans and teammates began to tweet at and about Woods using the hashtag #BeatCancer. At one point, the entire offensive line even shaved their heads.
The outpouring of emotion, Woods said, made it easier to get through the treatments.
On Oct. 2, the 6-foot-4, 293-pound lineman walked into the meeting room to speak with the media. He was smiling.
He beat cancer's chemotherapy.
What's your prognosis?
“I'll get another scan in three weeks,” Woods said. “From that point, they'll be able to tell me if I'm in remission or not. But all of my scans previous to this have come back excellent. So everything looks good right now.”
When will you get the port out of your chest?
“We'll see,” Woods said. “I'll get the scan and then I'll wait for the results and my doctor will let me know when I can get that out.”
Do you expect you'll have more stamina and strength?
“Oh yeah,” Woods said. “Every two weeks, when I go in for the treatment, I finally start feeling back up to full speed.
“I know when two weeks rolls around, that next Monday I'll be feeling good that I don't have to get a treatment that knocks me back down again.”
As he answered the questions, Woods' smile didn't fade. That slip of paper from that fortune cookie got it right.
On Oct. 1, Austin Woods had his last chemotherapy treatment — exactly three months after he cracked open that cookie.