Former JSU quarterback, current Jacksonville resident and upcoming country artist Riley Green and his partner won Redneck Island: Battle at the Lake after last Thursday night’s finale.
Green and his partner, Becky Andrews, both won the grand prize of $100,000. Redneck Island is a reality competition television show that appears on Country Music Television.
On the show, contestants are put into pairs consisting of one male and one female. They compete in a series of challenges and must avoid being sent to the pit in order to be safe to go to the next challenge. Two pairs are sent to the pit in each episode, and only one can come out.
For season five, a man and woman are paired together, but CMT added a twist. Twelve challengers were new to the game, but the other 12 were returning members. In addition to each pair including a male and female, each pair also had to include a rookie player and a veteran.
Green and his partner were both fan favorites from season four. Green said he was shocked to be chosen as a favorite since he only appeared in the first two episodes of the season.
He met with the co-hosts of Jacksonville State University’s radio show “Cocky Country”: Renee Lyons and myself March 29. Green said he came into his second season with a different mindset.
“This season I sort of looked at it more like realizing that you’re not going to win every competition, that you got to keep people in the house that wouldn’t send you to the pit,” he said.
Not only did he have a different mindset, but he also came in with a different strategy.
“My whole strategy was to sort of make alliances with the people I was sort of iffy about,” he said.
Green said he tried to align himself with the other veterans, which worked for most of the season.
He admitted that the season was difficult. The physical and mental challenges were not easy, but he said the hardest challenge for him was eating several odd things.
Another difficult aspect of the season was actually living in the house.
“There’s 24 people in a house together, so there’s definitely going to be some drama stirred up,” Green said.
Even the season’s finale had a little drama, including tears, a mishap with a jet ski and two partners who could not agree. Before Green participated in season four and won season five, he confessed that he hadn’t heard of the show until he was approached to play in it. He said he was not confident about what he wanted to do to begin with.
“It was one of those things where I knew a lot of exposure like that would definitely help me out with my music stuff, so it was kind of a tough decision but easy decision at the same time I guess,” Green said.
Participating in the show has helped his music career. He has acquired his local following through performances in the Calhoun County area, but he said the show helped him gain fans as far away as Mississippi. He said that when he played in a bar near Ole Miss, he played to a sold out bar because locals heard that “the guy from Redneck Island was coming.”
The Jacksonville local is still working hard and trying to get his name out there in the music world. He said he is thankful for the show.
“It’s definitely been a really good benefit to me.”
To hear the interview with Riley Green, visit Renee Lyons’s here.