When football great Peyton Manning co-hosts the 56th CMA Awards stage with Luke Bryan on Nov. 9, he will join a small but impressive group of professional athletes who have co-hosted music awards shows.
Four other professional athletes – also football stars – have co-hosted music awards shows Four of the five have served as co-hosts of country music awards shows, suggesting a strong overlap between country fans and soccer fans.
This connection can also be seen in the number of country stars tapped to sing the national anthem at the Super Bowl. List includes Charlie Pride (1974), Garth Brooks (1993), Faith Hill (2000), The Chicks (2003, when they were still known as the Dixie Chicks), Carrie Underwood (2010), Brian (2017), Eric Church (2017 ) 2021, with Jazmine Sullivan) and Mickey Guyton (2022). Pride and Hill sang “America the Beautiful” at the Super Bowl in 1974 and 2009, respectively. Blake Shelton and Miranda Lambert sang that patriotic standard in 2012.
Country stars have also been tapped to sing theme songs on weekly TV football programmes. From 1989 to 2011, Hank Williams Jr. performed a version of his 1984 hit “All My Rowdy Friends Are Coming Over Tonight” (reworked as “All My Rowdy Friends Are Here on Monday Night”) as ABC’s opening theme. Monday Night Football. The song was dropped in 2011, but was reinstated in 2017 with a new version by Williams Jr., Florida Georgia Line and Jason Derulo.
Hill sang the theme to “Waiting All Day for Sunday Night.” NBC Sunday Night FootballFrom 2007-12, before passing the ball to Underwood in 2013.
Artists from other countries also have strong connections with football. Kenny Chesney had a No. 1 hit on Hot Country Songs in 2010 with “The Boys of Fall,” a high school football game song. Tim McGrath has starred in two films where football is a central theme: Friday Night Lights And The blind side.
Here are five professional athletes who have co-hosted music awards shows. They are listed in reverse chronological order by date of display.