Pac-10 Q&A with Steve Johnson, USC Men's Tennis

Feb. 12, 2010

Getting to Know Steve Johnson

Steve Johnson is a sophomore tennis players at USC.  Johnson currently ranks No. 1 in the nation in singles and No. 13 in doubles with teammate Robert Farah according to the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA). As a freshman, the Orange, Calif., native led the Trojans to the 2009 NCAA Championship title finishing the year ranked No. 35 in singles and No. 10 in doubles with Farah. Selected  a first team All-Pac-10, Johnson, along with Farah, were named the Pac-10 Doubles Team of the Year that same year. Last year, he led the Trojans in singles wins at 35-13, including a team-best 20-6 record in dual matches. He reached the NCAA Singles round of 16 and the NCAA Doubles round of 16, being named to the NCAA All-Tournament Team for No. 1 doubles. This season, Johnson went 9-1 in fall singles winning the ITA National Indoor Championship. He also competed for the United States at the 2009 Master'U BNP Paribas in France.

Pac-10: What has been the best part of the 2009-10 tennis season...
SJ: I think it would have to be coming off a championship and the team feeling that we want to stay at the top. We want to have that feeling again and we are all working hard to get back to the NCAA Championship again.

Pac-10: What's currently on your iPod...
SJ: I have all kinds of music. I have everything except country and techno. One of the artist's that I like to listen to is John Mayer. Some songs on there that others would be surprised to know that I have are some Britney Spears tracks. I'm not to proud of those, though. 

Pac-10: If you could change places with a celebrity or famous athlete for a day who would it be...
SJ: I would have to say Roger Federer because of the success he has had on and off the tennis court. 

Pac-10: What were your favorite teams to watch when you were younger...
SJ: I was a big baseball fan so I liked watching the [Los Angeles] Angels. My favorite hockey team was the [Anaheim] Ducks. I was pretty much a fan of the Los Angeles area teams.

Pac-10 Who is your favorite athlete to watch...
SJ: LeBron James, no question. He is just a freak of nature and he is just a beast. The things he does, with his size, is unbelievable. 

Pac-10: What is your favorite memory as a Trojan so far...
SJ: It would definitely have to be winning the NCAA Championships last year. It was one of those special moments that I will remember for the rest of my life. 

Pac-10: What are your plans after college...
SJ: That's kind of down the road, but I would like to try to play professional tennis on the ATP tour.

Pac-10: The best thing about USC is...
SJ: I get along great with all of the guys and I knew most of them before I got here. I have a really good relationships with all the coaches, especially [head] coach [Peter] Smith. Overall, it was just a good fit because I am from Southern California. It's nice that my parents and friends get to watch me play tennis. 

Pac-10: What's the one sport that you are probably the worst at..
SJ: I would have to say soccer. I am terrible

at soccer.

Pac-10: What's something about you that others would be surprised to know...
SJ: I love playing video games. My favorite would have to be all the Madden games. 

Pac-10: What is the best advice you have ever received and who was it from...
SJ: I would have to say my dad who was my coach. He always taught me, 'stay humble, stay hungry.' He always said that there is always room for improvement.

Pac-10: What is your biggest pet peeve...
SJ: Without a doubt, it would have to be when things get dirty. I need things clean and organized.

Pac-10: What is one place you would like to visit...
Pac-10: One place that I would like to visit would be Spain. I have heard a lot of good things about Spain from some of my teammates. If I were to travel internationally it would be Spain.

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