U.S. SENIOR OPEN
Bettis, Brown Will Chair 2019 U.S. Senior Open at Notre Dame
July 20, 2018 | LIBERTY CORNER, N.J.
By Brian DePasquale, USGA
Jerome Bettis and Tim Brown, two University of Notre Dame football greats who each went on to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, will serve as the honorary chairmen of the 40th U.S. Senior Open Championship. The U.S. Senior Open will take place on The Warren Course at Notre Dame, in Notre Dame, Ind., from June 27-30, 2019.
Brown became the seventh Notre Dame player and the first wide receiver to receive the Heisman Trophy when he was recognized as college football’s most outstanding player in 1987. Brown, who was enshrined into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2009, would later cap a 17-year National Football League career, primarily with the Oakland/Los Angeles Raiders, with induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2015.
“It is a great privilege to work alongside fellow Notre Dame alumnus Jerome Bettis as honorary chairmen of the 2019 U.S. Senior Open,” said Brown, who is the lone Raider to have scored a touchdown as a receiver, rusher, kickoff returner and punt returner. “I have been returning to South Bend and The Warren Course in recent years to host a golf tournament that assists middle school students and the surrounding community has been very supportive. I am sure the Michiana area, Chicago and alumni and fans of the Blue and Gold will support this national championship.”
Bettis, an All-America fullback for the Fighting Irish, played for 13 years in the NFL, including his final 10 seasons with Pittsburgh. He helped the Steelers win Super Bowl XL, a 21-10 victory over Seattle in 2006, advance to four AFC championship games, qualify for the AFC playoffs six times and capture five AFC Central crowns. Bettis, who was chosen to the franchise’s all-time team as part of the 75th season celebration in 2007, was enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, along with Brown, in 2015.
“Tim Brown and I have many things in common, Notre Dame football and being part of the same Pro Football Hall of Fame Class to name two, so it is only natural that we work together to help promote next year’s U.S. Senior Open at The Warren Course,” said Bettis. “It is an honor to help support this prestigious championship. I know my hometown of Detroit and golf fans from across the Midwest will join me in welcoming the game’s greatest senior players to South Bend.”
Since 2013, Brown has been the general manager and co-owner of the Texas Revolution, which won the 2017 Indoor Football League Championship. He has also served as national chairman for Athletes & Entertainers for Kids and 911 for Kids.
Bettis, who after retirement embarked on a career as a commentator and studio analyst, started his own foundation to care for children with asthma and has been active with the NFLPA’s online community to support current and former NFL athletes. He was the recipient of the Walter Payton Man of the Year Award in 2001.
“Tim Brown and Jerome Bettis are two of the most accomplished football players in both Notre Dame and NFL history and are also fine examples of athletes who are outstanding citizens in their communities,” said Stuart Francis, USGA Championship Committee chairman. “They will be excellent ambassadors for the U.S. Senior Open and the game of golf.”
Brown was twice chosen to the Associated Press All-America Team and a unanimous selection as a senior at Notre Dame. He would become a first-round pick and the sixth overall in the 1988 NFL Draft by the Los Angeles Raiders and went on to be voted first-team All-Pro twice, earn a spot on the NFL 1990s All-Decade Team and receive nine Pro Bowl selections. Brown, who played in the 2003 Super Bowl and won four AFC West Division titles as a member of the Raiders organization, is still ranked among the NFL’s career leaders in receptions (7th, 1,094), receiving yards (7th, 14,934) and receiving touchdowns (tie, 9th, 100).
Bettis, who led the Fighting Irish to victory in the 1992 Sugar Bowl and 1993 Cotton Bowl, was chosen in the first round (10th overall) by the Los Angeles Rams and was the consensus 1993 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. Following a trade to Pittsburgh where he would earn the nickname, “The Bus,” for the way he dragged defenders on his back, Bettis would rush for more than 1,000 yards in each of his first six seasons with the Steelers and received 1996 NFL Comeback Player of the Year. He would be chosen first-team All-Pro twice and was a six-time Pro Bowl selection. Bettis currently stands seventh among the NFL career leaders in rushing yards (13,664) and is tied for 11th in rushing touchdowns (91) with Steelers Hall of Famer Franco Harris.
In their honorary role, Brown and Bettis will support the second USGA championship to be held at The Warren Course at Notre Dame. The course, designed by Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw and the site of the 2010 U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship, will be the first collegiate facility to host a U.S. Senior Open. The public course is nestled among 250 acres of woodlands and is a Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary.
Tickets for the 40th U.S. Senior Open Championship at The Warren Course are now on sale here: 2019ussenioropen.com/tickets/.
The U.S. Senior Open Championship, for golfers age 50 and older, is open to any professional and any amateur with a Handicap Index® not exceeding 3.4. In 2020, the U.S. Senior Open will be played June 25-28 at Newport (R.I.) Country Club. The 2021 Senior Open, to be contested July 8-11, will be held at Omaha (Neb.) Country Club. Saucon Valley Country Club, in Bethlehem, Pa., will host the 2022 championship from June 23-26. The 2025 U.S. Senior Open will return to The Broadmoor, in Colorado Springs, Colo., following a successful championship earlier this summer.