Country singer Lee Brice isn't joking when he says he wants to get back onto the football field.
"I promise you that I'll be back some day," said the 33-year-old Brice, who was a long snapper for Clemson University but had to quit the sport because of an arm injury. "I miss it so much. I just love the excitement and adrenaline."
For now, Brice will do the next best thing.
Brice worked with co-writers Brian Davis and Billy Montana to produce a song that the Clemson Tigers football team will use to fire up the players' entrances. The song, "Orange Empire," will debut for this weekend's home game against Ball State, and it's available today to preview here and available on iTunes.
"I wanted to do it right and spend as much time for this song as I would for anything on my album," said Brice, who Wednesday was nominated by the Country Music Association for best new artist. "I dug in and tried to remember what it felt like to run out on the field. I wanted to re-create that same feeling."
It all began when Brice just wanted to attend a football game as a fan.
"I asked my management to find a date for me to play a show a Friday before a football game so I could watch the Tigers play," Brice said. "And it led to this. It's been amazing. My emotions will be sky-high when they play it for the first time."
And Brice will get his wish to perform around a Tigers game: He will play Nov. 23 at Littlejohn Coliseum, the night before the Tigers play rival South Carolina.