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Riley Green wants to make something very clear. He’s not an Alabama fan.
In fact, he’s the exact opposite. Green is on the other side of the Iron Bowl rivalry and roots for Auburn.
That didn’t stop him from getting mercilessly booed by 50,000+ fans over the weekend in Music City.
Green hails from Jacksonville, Alabama. The 34-year-old grew up in the small town of about 12,000 people (likely way less when he was there) is home to Jacksonville State University, but not all too much else.
His hometown is located about two hours from both Tuscaloosa and The Plains. And if you grow up in that part of the Yellowhammer State, it’s a coin flip as to which side of the in-state rivalry that you’re on.
Green pulls for the Tigers. His grandfather, though, rooted for the Crimson Tide.
The latter led the former to get jeered while opening up for Luke Combs during back-to-back sold out nights at Nissan Stadium, home of the Tennessee Titans. All in good fun, of course.
Throughout the song, ‘Hell Of A Way To Go,’ Riley recounts all of the special memories that he shared with his dad and grandaddy, from hunting to fishing to watching college football.
That was the inspiration for the song.
If my granddaddy could’ve left this world while he was either watchin’ Alabama play football, fishin’ on Weiss lake or just sittin’ in the carport with my grandmother I know he would’ve been happy.— Riley Green
As the song goes on, he fantasizes about what it will be like when he gets to do the same thing with a son of his own one day.
Riley Green’s ‘Hell Of A Way To Go’ chorus goes:
I’d be sittin’ on a lake like glass
Catchin’ Largemouth Bass
Just my boy and me
Or maybe on a fifty-yard line
Watchin’ Alabama whoop up on Tennessee
Or maybe on a front porch swing
Somethin’ cold to drink, my baby’s hand to hold
And a song on a radio, would be a hell of a way to go
As you might expect, when Green sang the song for the first time in Alabama, the crowd went nuts.
That was not the case in Nashville. It was the exact opposite reaction.
Volunteers fans let him hear it whenever he reached the part about the Crimson Tide whooping’ up on their team.
The boos were so loud during the first two choruses that Riley Green stopped his song before the third, embraced the hate and encouraged the 50K+ to let him hear it.
Even the non-Tennessee fans in the crowd could get behind booing Alabama. And although Saban had won 15-straight against the cross-state SEC rivals, it was Josh Heupel and the Vols that smoked the victory cigars in 2022!