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OU football: Arizona transfer Cortez Johnson ready to make big impact in secondary

Johnson followed Mike Stoops to Oklahoma. “At Arizona, he believed in me,” Johnson said. “That's why I'm here with him and working hard for him.”
by Ryan Aber Published: August 14, 2013

“You just know about a certain player,” Mike Stoops told the Tucson Citizen before the 2011 season. “He's pretty much a slam dunk kind of guy. We knew he was a great player. You don't see many corners that size who has that much range, athletic ability. There are a lot of things about him that stood out as a player.”

Annette Johnson thought long ago that her son was going to be an athlete.

“Even from a baby growing up, I was just amazed,” she said. “I told my husband when he was a baby, ‘He's got awfully big hands. With those big ol' hands, he might play basketball.' But he turned out to play football and he's become a great player.”

While his physical traits certainly took him quite a ways, Ronald said Cortez's competitiveness — especially with his older brother — has been what's made him stand out.

“He hates losing,” Ronald said. “Travis is about three years older than him and when Travis was about 14 and Cortez was about 11 years old, I used to make those two play. You talk about a battle — a brawl. There was no fighting, it was just competing. Once Cortez got a little older, a little taller, he was able to compete with Travis. Those two go at it. They still do.”

Cortez can't wait for the Sooners season opener against Louisiana-Monroe, when he's likely to play in his first game in nearly two years.

“I finally get my chance to touch the field again,” Cortez said. “I've got a great feel for it. I can't wait until Aug. 31 and just to bust it wide open.”

His family can hardly wait, either.

His parents will be there, along with four of his aunts.

“That will be special,” Ronald said. “I might get a little emotional that day.”

by Ryan Aber
OU Athletics Reporter
Ryan Aber has worked for The Oklahoman since 2006, covering high schools, the Oklahoma City RedHawks, the Oklahoma City Barons and OU football recruiting. An Oklahoma City native, Aber graduated from Northeastern State. Before joining The...
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