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Watching Brandon Weeden quarterback OSU is a surreal experience for wife Melanie Weeden

by Jenni Carlson Published: September 9, 2011

STILLWATER — Melanie Weeden raised up on tippy-toe as if it might help the football find its mark.

“Get up there!” she hollered as the pass floated through the evening air.

Then, a little louder, “Get up there!”

The fade route from her husband was perfect.

When Brandon Weeden connected with Justin Blackmon on the first of two touchdowns against Arizona, a night that ended up being historic for the Oklahoma State quarterback, Melanie Weeden cheered and clapped. She high-fived her mom. She waved her arm to the rhythm of the fight song.

She celebrated just like everyone else inside Boone Pickens Stadium on Thursday night.

The thing is, she isn't like any other Cowboy fan. Her experience on game day is unique because her perspective is like no other.

No doubt there are parents with sons on the field and siblings with brothers in the game. There is even one other wife with a first-string husband; Bailey Garner's husband, Grant, starts at center.

But no one else is married to the man who holds the key to the Cowboys' championship dreams this season.

“It's been kind of an out-of-body experience,” Melanie said of watching Brandon play. “Every day, we go through our normal routine where he's my normal husband.”

To Melanie, he's the guy who occasionally needs to take out the trash or unload the dishwasher.

To Cowboy fans, he's a gridiron giant.

Melanie, then a student at Central Oklahoma, first met Brandon after his rookie year in minor-league baseball. He had been the first pick of the Yankees in the 2002 draft, so the idea that he'd one day play college football seemed far-fetched.

A shoulder injury ended Brandon's baseball career, and in 2007, he surprised Melanie by telling her that he planned to walk on to the football team at OSU.

She's been around sports all her life. She was a swimmer at Moore High School. Her dad, Paul Meuser, is a longtime basketball coach who's been at Preston, Norman, Moore and Tuttle.

But football?

Melanie never really liked it.

When she started dating Brandon, the petite brunette didn't know the difference between a running back and a wide receiver. When he started playing, she didn't know the difference between false start and offsides.

Things are different now.

On third and long midway through the second quarter Thursday night, whistles blew and flags flew.

“What happened?” her mother, Sue, asked.

“Offsides,” Melanie said before the referee even made the call.

She smiled.

“I've stepped up my game,” she said proudly.

Just like her husband. Only two years ago, he was the third-string quarterback for the Cowboys, but during another Thursday night game, this one against Colorado, he introduced himself to the college football world. With Zac Robinson injured and Alex Cate ineffective, Brandon took over in the second half. He rallied the Cowboys. He ignited the crowd.

Melanie remembers sitting in the stands that night awed by what she was seeing, what she was sensing.

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by Jenni Carlson
Jenni Carlson, a sports columnist at The Oklahoman since 1999, came by her love of sports honestly. She grew up in a sports-loving family in Kansas. Her dad coached baseball and did color commentary on the radio for the high school football...
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