Like many younger soccer gamers rising up in North Carolina, Chase Rice had his sights set on the NFL. After an impressive sophomore season with the Tar Heels, that aim appeared lifelike.
Then the linebacker who broke the ACC in 2006 broke his left ankle within the first recreation of the season as a junior. Though he returned in 2007, Rice already knew that the skilled soccer participant wouldn’t be on his resume.
The nation music star could be.
However as draft time approaches, Rice seems again on these days on the sphere and his hopes of reaching the very best degree in soccer.
“I actually felt headed in that path,” says Rice. “My 12 months (2006) was the one participant who did not come off the sphere, I may play inside and out of doors, and it regarded good. Then I solely obtained 1 / 4 and a half in my third 12 months, and that has been my 12 months and I want we might go to the highest of the ACC.
“The next 12 months, the ankle was not the identical and I used to be not the identical participant.”
Through the 2009 draft, 5 Tar Heels had been chosen, together with broad receiver Hakeem Nicks for the Giants within the first spherical. Nicks gained a Tremendous Bowl for the 2011 season with New York. Tight finish Richard Quinn and broad receiver Brandon Tate entered the second spherical; Deal with Garrett Reynolds, one in every of Rice’s closest pals at the moment, was chosen in Spherical 5, as was catcher Brooks Foster.
“I used to be up there enjoying the caliber of soccer that these guys had and that is why I can say that I feel I used to be up there to be drafted if I hadn’t been injured,” Rice says. “Clearly you must get into the video games and are available and get your expertise. I felt like I used to be as much as the requirements of these guys and I actually assume I had the chance. It did not work out that approach.”
Rice did fairly effectively in one other space of leisure. His present hit is a pairing with the Florida Georgia Line: “Drinkin ‘Beer. Talking of God. Amen.”
Rice additionally co-wrote the primary music “Cruise” for that duo, which the Florida Georgia Line additionally re-released as a remix with Nelly. On her personal, Rice has had two top-five hits and a No. 1 double platinum on “Eyes On You.”
A few of his songs replicate his days as an athlete, notably “Beats A Million Bucks” and “Carolina Can,” which has develop into one thing of an anthem not only for Tar Heels followers however for the state itself.
Rice sought out Scooter Carusoe, who had written a number of hit songs, for “Carolina Can.”
“I knew he lived in Carolina, and ‘Something However Mine’ (video) was on TV,” says Rice of Kenny Chesney’s mega hit. “I dreamed of writing with Scooter. This was the primary time I wrote that I needed to put in writing a music about coming house to a really particular place. He is aware of so much about Chapel Hill and Asheville, and we began speaking about my story with Carolina. However we actually did not have a hook. As we drive to lunch, he seems at me with this smile and simply says, ‘After I want somebody to remind me of who I’m, Carolina Can.’
“It was written a second after that; we had a objective for why we wrote. It is one in every of my all-time favorites … I’ve seen ships with that identify and other people shout it on the live performance. I performed the Azalea Competition in Wilmington and did not need to sing a phrase. I am enjoying in Washington state and everyone seems to be singing it. Everybody can establish with him. Every place has its personal historical past. “
The story for all musical artists throughout the COVID-19 pandemic has been the identical: attempting to get their work out to followers with out having the ability to carry out dwell live shows. Along with headlining his personal excursions, Rice opened for Garth Brooks and Chesney on the NFL headquarters. After acting at a gala for Tremendous Bowl champion coach Bruce Arians’ founding movie star golf traditional on Sunday, Rice cannot wait to get again on the highway.
“On a soccer area it is totally different since you’re working out of apparatus,” says Rice. “My band and staff are my staff, however there may be at all times that second the place I am alone earlier than occurring stage. It is an unbelievable feeling, nevertheless it will also be lonely. If you’re alone, it reveals the final word distinction of racing with a staff. and working alone, and it is fairly intense.
“I used to be telling one in every of my pals in 2017 that it broke my coronary heart as a result of I by no means had an opportunity to play within the NFL,” Rice remembers, “and he stated nothing and waited for a solution. After which he is like, ‘Did not you simply inform me you performed Kenny Chesney at Lucas Oil Stadium? Not an NFL stadium?
“That is a perspective there; desires in a wierd approach have come true.” ———
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