EDMOND — Junior Day at the 2014 U.S. Senior Open was a pretty cool experience for J.D., 6, and Ceyona, 9.
They got to sit with their dad Brandon Douglas near the Oak Tree National Driving Range, where Oak Tree National member and five-time PGA Tour winner Scott Verplank, former Oklahoma City Thunder player Desmond Mason and former Oklahoma State football standout Brandon Weeden talked about their individual sports and competed in an exhibition of their golf skills, which included long-distance driving.
A bit earlier, after he arrived, Verplank rolled golf balls to J.D. and Ceyona.
Verplank, an Oklahoma State University product, received a surprise birthday cake from USGA personnel in honor of his 50th birthday. His golf résumé includes winning the 1984 U.S. Amateur Championship at Oak Tree National. Oak Tree is his home course.
“It’s a great place to live. It’s a great course. After I got out of Oklahoma State, this was kind of like the second home for Oklahoma State golf,” he said referring to Oak Tree Gang pros including himself, Dr. Gil Morgan, Bob Tway and Willie Wood.
Verplank’s been playing out of Oak Tree National for nearly 30 years now.
“It’s worked out well,” he said. “Me and my wife love the community and I love this golf course. It’s a great club and they got it perfect for this tournament.”
Verplank said Edmond is a great place to raise a family, the heart of “real America.” An example was the U.S. Senior Open’s Military Appreciation Day on Tuesday, Verplank said.
“I think everybody around this part of the country believes the same stuff,” he said. “It’s just a wonderful place.”
Weeden, a former Santa Fe High School standout in football and baseball, played in the NFL for the Cleveland Browns before being picked up by the Dallas Cowboys. At Oklahoma State, the record-setting signal caller was a first team All-Big 12 quarterback in 2010.