The inside track with Danzell Fortson
Freshman sprinter Danzell Fortson walked on to UT's campus less than two months ago ready for the transition from top U. S. junior national sprinter to college standout for the Texas Longhorns.
"The first month at school has been hectic with classes, study hall and morning practice," said Fortson. "I have almost everything under control because I've been managing my time better each day."
Fortson also managed his time on the track well during high school. The two-time Texas UIL champion (Class 4A in 2006, Class 5A in 2007) boasts a lifetime best time of 46.76 in the 400 and 21.55 in the 200. The 2006 Dallas Morning News All-Area First-Team selection also spent many afternoons on the football field as a running back and free safety for Keller Central.
During the summer of 2007, Fortson expanded his experience, earning a roster spot with Team USA at the International Athletics Association Federation (IAAF) World Youth Championships in Ostrava, Czech Republic. In the medley relay, he anchored the quartet to a gold medal in 1:51.34. In the his primary event the quarter-mile, he clocked the fastest time in the third heat (47.71) in round one before lowering his meet performance time to 47.70 in the semifinal. He finished the race with a seventh-place showing in the finals in 48.13.
Even with all the success at the junior levels, Fortson understands the college level demands more of your time and training.
"The workouts are tougher on my body," continues Fortson. "I've gotten used to it since we're in the third week. [The practice drills] have helped me work a lot of muscles I didn't work in high school. I've also learned running is more about mechanics than just getting out there on the start line. My drills are very different but the weight training is similar to the lifting I did in high school."
GETTING TO KNOW Danzell Fortson