Carolina Panthers

Q&A: Carolina Panthers cornerback Josh Norman

Carolina Panthers cornerback Josh Norman (24) has grown up around horses and owns three himself.
Carolina Panthers cornerback Josh Norman (24) has grown up around horses and owns three himself. dtfoster@charlotteobserver.com

Ten questions about life off the field with Carolina Panthers cornerback Josh Norman:

Q. You grew up riding horses in Greenwood, S.C. Who introduced you to it?

A. My family. We pretty much were into it, like, I don’t even know how long. Ever since I was born I was on a horse.

Q. Do you ride bareback?

A. My uncle and them do bareback. I used to do bareback. But I do saddle now – Western. Sometimes English. English if they’re showing, Western if we’re just riding.

Q. You said your family has 13 horses. How many are yours?

A. Out of 13, three.

Q. When you’re home, do you take care of them and clean their stalls?

A. Well, we’ve got stall help. We’ve got a guy who comes in and mucks all the stalls and stuff like that.

Q. Have you ever been thrown from a horse and did you get hurt?

A. I did, right here (points to a small scar above his left eye). My horse, Strawberry, bucked me off. My mom was on with me. And he bucked me off and I went up in the air and came down and hit my head on a tree (root). The next thing I know I woke up in a room surrounded by a whole bunch of people that were standing around praying.

Q. They thought you were seriously hurt?

A. I don’t know, I was knocked out (laughs). Heck, I don’t know. I can’t remember. I just remember that, though. I was probably like 6, or 5.

Q. Would you ever want to get into thoroughbred racing?

A. Oh, yeah. I’ve got a saddlebred that I kind of run around. I don’t show him. He’s an 8-year-old (named Delta). I don’t really do anything but ride him and have fun with him. He’s learning how to jump and stuff like that. I kind of like run him. He’s one of my thrill horses. I can run him and think I’m in a race derby or something like that.

Q. Have you been to the Kentucky Derby or any other big races?

A. I’ve never been. But once I get involved in the whole industry of thoroughbreds and racing them, I know I will because that’s going to be fun for me. It’s going to be an all-time hobby of mine.

Q. Did you live on a horse farm?

A. I had 25, 30 horses and like 45 acres. My dad still owns it. We still go down there to ride when we’re back in Greenwood.

Q. You don’t ride in Charlotte?

A. I’ve got one here. That’s the saddlebred, Delta. He’s in Wellington Farms. That’s probably about 45 minutes from here.

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