After waiting out a morning downpour, Bucs LB Derrick Brooks led such NFL stars as Marshall Faulk, Troy Aikman and Reggie White onto the course
Tampa Bay Buccaneer fans know that not much slows down Derrick Brooks. On Monday, however, Mother Nature threatened to put a damper on the Derrick Brooks Celebrity Golf Classic, the biggest fundraiser of the year for the Pro Bowl linebacker's "Brooks' Bunch" program.
With heavy rains falling and lightning threatening the Old Memorial Golf Course, Brooks spent much of the morning mulling over whether or not to cancel the highly-anticipated event. The scheduled 8:30 a.m. tee time came and went without any break in the rain, and the forecast for the rest of the day didn't look much more promising. Brooks held tough, and at 9:45 a.m. he announced that the tournament would be teeing off at 10:00 a.m., rain or shine.
Apparently, Brooks' sheer will was enough to convince Mother Nature, who called off the rain and brought out a blue sky by 10:00 a.m. After an hour for the course to dry out, the celebrity golfers did, in fact, tee off, and the tournament was on.
In addition to Monday's action on the links, Brooks' Golf Classic also featured a pairings party and auction on Sunday night, where celebrities and players mingled over dinner and drinks. Featured on the event's star-studded lineup were such former and current NFL notables as Troy Aikman, Derrick Alexander, Mike Alstott, Ronde Barber, Terrell Buckley, Ken Dilger, Kevin Dogins, Warrick Dunn, Martin & Bill Gramatica, Brian Griese, Jon Gruden, Marshall Faulk, William Floyd, Brad Johnson, Joe Jurevicius, Shaun King, Keenan McCardell, Anthony McFarland, Nat Moore, Yo Murphy, Hardy Nickerson, Shelton Quarles, Sterling Sharpe, Lamar Thomas, Reggie White and Doug Williams.
The highlight of Sunday night's party occurred when Brooks convinced two of his Brooks' Bunch pupils to take the stage and speak about the difference the program has made in their lives.
"(The golf tournament) is our biggest fundraiser and it gives everybody a chance to come out and see the impact their support can have," said Brooks. "Having the kids speak gives everyone that supports us a chance to see and hear what we do."
The rain that delayed the tournament's start did little to diminish the spirit of its host, who had some last words for all of the participants before heading out for his 18 holes of fun.
"Thank you for your support and standing behind our program," said Brooks. "And I hope everyone hits it straight today."
To find out how you can contribute to Derrick Brooks Charities please visit www.derrickbrookscharities.org.