Golf is getting another prime-time exhibition. Except this one will be live — under the lights.
Quicken Loans is finalizing details for a match involving Rory McIlroy and Rickie Fowler a week before the U.S. Open, a person familiar with the negotiations told the Associated Press on Monday.
The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the match has not been announced. The match would be at Detroit Golf Club on June 7, the Tuesday before U.S. Open week begins at Oakmont outside of Pittsburgh.
The first two hours would be televised live by Golf Channel, followed by the 9 to 11 p.m. slot shown live on CBS.
Unlike the Monday night matches involving Tiger Woods in 1999 and 2000, there would be a celebrity component with this exhibition. The person said it would be "Team Rory" against "Team Rickie." Still to be determined are the celebrities and the format.
McIlroy, who is No. 3 in the world going into the Northern Trust Open this week at Riviera, and Fowler (No. 4 in the world) are two of the most popular figures in golf. Both live in South Florida, and Fowler last year played in the Irish Open to help out McIlroy because of McIlroy's involvement.
Golf has a history of such exhibitions. A century ago, the value of winning a major was to be selected to compete in such exhibitions, where the prize money was greater than at a major. Woods resurrected that concept in 1999 with the "Showdown at Sherwood" against David Duval (they were No. 1 and No. 2), and a year later against Sergio Garcia.