For diehard college football fans, the latter half of the holiday season is dedicated to watching hours of bowl games leading up to the BCS National Championship.
Cole Swindell, a loyal fan of Georgia Southern University’s Eagle Nation, is one of them.
On Saturday (Dec. 31), Swindell will play halftime at the Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl between the Louisiana State Tigers and the Louisville Cardinals at Orlando’s Camping World Stadium. It’s his first halftime performance for a college football bowl game.
“I’m a Georgia Southern boy,” Swindell said over the phone for our CMT.com interview. “I wish they were in a bowl game this year. But I think it’s two great teams. You’ve got a Heisman trophy winner Lamar Jackson from Louisville there, and that would be cool to meet an Heisman Trophy winner. And I grew up around LSU football. I’m going to have to stay neutral on this one and just pull for a good game. I’m glad to be part of the entertainment for a game that normally I’d be watching.”
He added that he’s always game to perform events that involve both sports and music. And since it’s an early gig, having the option to ring in 2017 with his family is icing on the cake.
“For the past several years, I’m always playing on New Year’s Eve and I’m out of town,” Swindell said. “I never get to see anybody. But here I am getting to play my music around a sport that I love. I’m probably going to do the game, and then I’ve got a decision to make. On New Year’s Eve night, I’ll either stay and hang out in Orlando or maybe make my way back home and start the New Year off with my family. I’ve can’t remember the last time I got to do that. That may be the best option.”
On Thursday (Dec. 29), McGraw will headline the 2016 Belk Bowl FanFest at Charlotte’s BB&T Ballpark leading up to the match-up between the Arkansas Razorbacks and the Virginia Tech Hokies.
LOCASH will perform a free postgame concert on Nashville’s Lower Broadway following Friday’s (Dec. 30) Music City Bowl game between the Nebraska Cornhuskers and the Tennessee Vols.
Brothers Osborne will headline Saturday’s (Dec. 31) New Years Eve Bowl Bash in Jacksonville, Florida following the Taxslayer Bowl game between Georgia Tech University and the University of Kentucky. The day will include performances by Brett Young, Maggie Rose, Tyler Hammond, Jordan Davis, Josh Phillips, Lockhart and DJ E.L.
The winners of the Peach and Fiesta bowls will go on to play in the BCS National Championship game on Jan. 9 at Tampa’s Raymond James Stadium. Leading up to kickoff, Dierks Bentley will headline Capital One Quicksilver® Music Stage from Championship Tailgate and Little Big Town will sing the National Anthem.
After his bowl game performance, Swindell looks forward to rehearsing in Nashville for Bentley’s 2017 What the Hell tour, which starts Jan. 19 in Dayton, Ohio with Jon Pardi.
“He’s one of my favorite artists,” Swindell said of Bentley. “Everybody knows that. We’re buddies. If there’s one person I haven’t toured with that I can learn from it’s Dierks, his crew and his whole camp. That’s something to look forward to right there. That’s my main focus is ending this year well and getting focused on 2017. It will be here before we know it.”