In the end, it was the unlikely juxtaposition of the boyish looks and deep voice that won America's ears and hearts, as Scotty McCreery beat out Lauren Alaina to take home the "American Idol" season 10 crown.
In a season that introduced rock star Steven Tyler and pop diva Jennifer Lopez as new judges, McCreery's country crooning won out, this despite less positive reviews for the North Carolina native's finale song, "I Love You This Big."
After predicting a win for Alaina on Tuesday night's final competition, judge Randy Jackson changed his tune on Wednesday afternoon, telling host Ryan Seacrest that he thought McCreery would win it all.
A 17-year old resident of Garner, North Carolina, McCreery was always a solid frontrunner, having never appeared in the bottom three of fan voting.
In an interview after the show with Entertainment Weekly, McCreery paid tribute to Alaina, saying, "I met her the first day of Hollywood week, so we've been really close. She's been my schoolmate for the last couple of months. We've had a lot of fun together. We're really close friends. We still are. She's a wonderful young lady."
Now, listen to the exclusive debut of Scotty McCreery's single, "I Love You This Big."
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