Carrie Underwood will take over the theme song for “Sunday Night Football,” with NBC sticking to the formula of a female country music star for its intro.
Underwood steps in for Faith Hill, who announced last month that she would not be back for a seventh season. Underwood will sing a new version of “Waiting All Day for Sunday Night,” the network said Tuesday.
Producer Fred Gaudelli said that after Hill informed him in February, Underwood was the only performer he pursued. She was under consideration for the role when NBC first broadcast the Sunday night NFL games in 2006.
Pink sang the opening tune, set to Joan Jett’s “I Hate Myself for Loving You,” for that first season before Hill came on.
“For me, it just always seemed like something that would be fun to do,” Underwood said during a conference call. “To watch Faith do it week after week, to see that hype for the game, it’s something that’s so cool.”
Underwood plans to adapt the intro to her style, with the lyrics remaining the same. NFL stars will again appear in the video sequence.
A former “American Idol” champion and six-time Grammy winner, Underwood is married to hockey star Mike Fisher of the Nashville Predators. The 30-year-old Oklahoma native sang the national anthem at the 2010 Super Bowl.
Underwood said her husband, who’s friends with several NFL players, was thrilled about her foray into his profession.
“He’s a sports dude,” she said. “Yeah, he plays hockey, but he definitely loves football, as do I.”
The first Sunday night game is Sept. 8, when the New York Giants visit the Dallas Cowboys. “Sunday Night Football,” which averaged 21.8 million viewers last season, is TV’s top-rated prime-time show.
Gaudelli said he contacted Hill’s reps Tuesday to let them know of the hire. Underwood said she expected to get pointers from Hill the next time they cross paths.
Underwood is signed up to star in NBC’s live broadcast of “The Sound of Music” this year. While her familiarity with the network helped, she said, the two deals weren’t connected.
A 105-year-old woman from Richland, Texas says that the key to long life is bacon.
Pearl Cantrell’s love of bacon is so strong that the Oscar Meyer Wienermobile made a stop through town last week to wish her a happy birthday, all because she told a local news station her amazing secret.
“I love bacon, I eat it everyday,” she told a reporter for Abilene-based Big Country Homepage in April. “I don’t feel as old as I am, that’s all I can say.”
One month later, Cantrell was sitting shotgun in the Wienermobile and riding through the town as dozens of local residents watched the strange-looking vehicle pass by.
“We’ve seen a lot of stories on the road, but nothing quite like this one, so we’re excited to be here,” an Oscar Meyer spokesperson told Big Country Homepage. “We know she’s an inspiration. Pearl is an inspiration for the community, and her friends and family. So we had to make a special stop here for her today.”
And, of course, they also gave her a huge case of bacon.
“I love bacon, I could eat it for every meal — and I do!” she said.