When I saw singer Darius Rucker at the Ryder Cup this year, my first thought was, "this is strange" as he rode around in a cart with Tiger Woods and Notah Begay III. I knew Rucker was a golf fanatic of course, but I didn't know how deep it ran for him.
Apparently, it goes even deeper than I thought. Rucker was recently added as a golf agent to an agency that already boasts PGA Tour pros like Ben Crane and Steve Stricker. Here's Darren Rovell of ESPN.
The 50-year-old lead singer of "Hootie And The Blowfish" told ESPN on Monday that he is now a partner in a company called MGC Sports, which represents golfers, football players and coaches. Rucker was approached by Alan Bullington, who had recently merged his sports agency, One Degree Management, with MGC, a law firm that has offices in the Southeast.
That's an interesting career move for someone who has built up a lifetime of work in music. But Rucker has always been a huge sports fan. Now he just gets to help shape the lives of the athletes he enjoys watching.
"If I didn't see Jay Z crushing it in the business like he is, I probably wouldn't have done it," Rucker told ESPN. "But I think I have a lot to offer. I'm going to be really involved. I will be one phone call away if a client needs some advice or needs me to be at their game."
He does have a lot to offer in the way of how to handle being a celebrity, entertainer and general brand (though I'm not sure people like Stricker care about any of this). Do college golfers know who Rucker is? Maybe. Maybe not. But it's clear he is dedicated to making this work.
It will be fascinating, too. You don't see many golf agents (or sports agents, period) who are bigger stars than their clients. Most agents at even the biggest tournaments can sneak around unnoticed by 99 percent of the fans there. That won't be the case with Rucker.
I'm confident he can make it work, though. He has enough juice with enough companies and enough people that his contribution should only be a positive one. Maybe when I see him in Paris at the 2018 Ryder Cup, he will be there representing golfers on each side of the match instead of just rolling around with Tiger Woods.