The Dean's List: May 24, 2015
VERPLANK HAS STRONG FINISH IN SENIOR PGA CHAMPIONSHIP
Scott Verplank has made a typically impressive comeback and will pocket good money and a load of confidence from his strong performance in the Senior PGA Championship, won in a rout by Colin Montgomerie, who won last year's US Senior Open at Oak Tree National. The common denominator for Monty--and part of the reason for Verplank's success—is the fact that they played at the Pete Dye Course at French Lick Resort in French Lick, IN—yes, that French Lick.
Montgomery has figured out that to win on Pete Dye courses you need hit a lot of greens, consistently lag putt well, and make lots of pars. Verplank knows that all too well, although he struggled mightily last year at Oak Tree, missing the cut. His first round of a Champion's tournament was played that Thursday on his fiftieth birthday.
The prideful OSU four-year All-American was embarrassed in not being able to stick around for the weekend, despite National being his home course and the fact that his spacious family home sits back into the woods of No. 16. But Verplank wasn't playing well at the time and not making the cut was not a matter of choking under the home-course pressure.
But Verplank didn't stay down long. His commitment to conditioning, lifting and basically keeping his myriad of injuries in good enough shape to get back to getting enough practice time to become competitive with the over-50 crowd has been remarkable. Verplank never complains about the fact that he has long suffered from Type 1 diabetes—he wears a pager-sized insulin pump on the course. He's used the disadvantage to his advantage by being an absolute bulldog – as strong a competitor as ever put on spikes.
Scott is extraordinarily loyal to his alma mater, a regular visitor of Mike Gundy at OSU football practices, and remains a close friend and confidant of his former golf coach Mike Holder, the athletic director. Verplank is a devoted husband, father of four, and also co-chair of The Next Level campaign at Oklahoma State, designed to raise funds to improve the OSU football facilities.
The consummate grinder, Scotty V had a great week in the hometown of one Larry Bird and didn't make his first bogey on Sunday until missing a four-footer on No. 14. He finished in style, chipping in for birdie on the 72nd hole in a tie for fourth at two-under par. It's by far his best finish since joining the Champion's Tour, where he'd won less than $18-thousand dollars in 2015.
NBA ON TONIGHT'S BLITZ…AND SHAME ON ROCKETS!
The Thunder has the 14th pick of the upcoming NBA Draft. John and I will analyze the opportunity OKC has and what they might do with the mid-first round selection. A trade doesn't appear likely.
We'll talk NBA Playoffs on the Blitz and I guarantee there won't be anything good to say about the Houston Rockets. That 35-point debacle last night against Golden State should be embarrassing enough that Kevin McHale should've put them through a midnight scrimmage. Sure Steph and the Warriors are exceptional. But a 35-point loss should never happen. Especially in the playoffs.
Thanks for checking in and we'll see you – or make that, you'll hopefully see us tonight on the Blitz!