(CMT Offstage keeps a 24/7 watch on everything that's happening with country music artists behind the scenes and out of the spotlight.)
When I saw Scotty McCreery on the red carpet of the 2013 CMT Music Awards, I didn't necessarily see a country star. I saw a college kid. So I had to ask him how it felt to have one year at North Carolina State University under his belt. "Well, honestly, high school is one thing, but college is a whole different story. It was tough," he told me, admitting that getting through finals week right before the awards show was really hard. Especially Spanish, even though he said he is 25 percent Puerto Rican. "I might be dropping some hours next year," he said. "This year was fun but tough. I'll have more leniency that way and can still get the experience and the education I'm looking for. I could be on the 50-year plan, though." Then I asked him for a little advice for my daughter, who is leaving for college in the Carolinas in a couple of months. "Tell her to have some fun but keep her studies first," he said. "Like don't have fun and then try to cram in the studies." Referring to a North Carolina-based restaurant chain known for its chicken and biscuits, he added, "And she's gonna love Bojangles. It's a little taste of heaven."