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Cheryl Burke: Terrell Owens and I ‘Don’t Want to Get 7s Anymore’ on ‘Dancing With the Stars’

Dancing With the Stars pro Cheryl Burke is blogging exclusively with Us Weekly about her quest to take home the season 25 mirrorball trophy with partner Terrell Owens! Check back each week for her latest update on the competition.

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Cheryl Burke and Terrell Owens on Dancing With The Stars.
Cheryl Burke and Terrell Owens on Dancing With The Stars. ABC/Eric McCandless / ABC Via Getty Images

Last week was our best week so far and it’s such an amazing feeling to be rewarded with our highest score yet of all 8s! I’m just so proud of Terrell that he was able to experience what victory on the dance floor feels like. I just wanted one 8 this week, so I was thrilled that we got three of them. This definitely motivates Terrell going in to this week. He has always been motivated, but at least now he can see his potential. It was such an emotional night for everyone, but we got through it.

I didn’t want Terrell to look at the package before the dance, but he couldn’t help it. He started off the dance emotional, but was still able to get through it. When I saw him cry at the end of the routine, I thought he was hurt because he was covering his head. I was like, “Is everything OK?” Then you just saw tears run down his face. I was just so proud of him for getting through it. He used the emotion that he was feeling that night to his own benefit. He told me he had an out of body experience, and that he didn’t remember doing half the routine. I think the judges really saw a different side to him, which was our goal for last week.

Cheryl Burke and Terrell Owens
Cheryl Burke and Terrell Owens ABC/Eric McCandless / ABC Via Getty Images

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We were so relieved that we were safe, but it was such a shocker that Derek Fisher was sent home. I didn’t think that was going to happen, but also you never know who is going to be eliminated. We got all 8s this week, and there are five other couples that got the same score, so you are never safe. Last week was a big improvement for Terrell, but if we want to stay in the competition, we can’t be in the middle of the leader board with everybody else.

This is Disney week through the eras, and we have the ‘90s. We are dancing the quickstep to “I Just Can’t Wait to be King” from the Lion King. Terrell is playing Simba, and I guess you can say I’m an extension of him. We are dancing through the jungle, and involving the troop and a couple extra dancers as well, so it’s going to be a pretty big deal. We just need to get the quickstep right, because there’s a lot of moving parts and we are rehearsing six to eight hours a day. The routines are getting longer as people get eliminated, which makes it even harder.

So far, rehearsals are going great. The quickstep has a lot of intricate steps, and it’s a different type of challenge this week. This is the quickest dance he probably ever will do, and on top of that he has to maintain form, and we don’t want the judges to nail us for something he is good at doing. Terrell is known for being fast on the football field, but he needs to be quick on the dance floor. I keep telling him those moments need to happen with the quickstep for a good minute and a half!

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Our goal for this week is just to get through this quickstep, and we don’t want to go down on the leader board. We don’t want to get 7s anymore. We have to stay within the 8 and hopefully 9 range. This last week was a different experience for Terrell. I don’t ever think he thought that Dancing With the Stars would change his life, and I think he feels that everyone here is now family. He really is enjoying this process, and taking it all in, and meeting new friends that will be in his life forever.

At this point, we are pretty fatigued. We are at the halfway mark where everyone starts to get really tired, and on top of that it’s Disney night. It’s going to be a huge night for Dancing With the Stars. We’ve got our opening number, and our dance as well. I think there might be a double elimination coming up soon, so that’s in the back of our heads too. We don’t know when it will be yet. They like to surprise us, so we are taking each dance week by week. Disney week is always an entertaining night, but right now, we are just focusing on the quickstep.

Dancing With the Stars airs on ABC Mondays at 8 p.m. ET.

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