Two former participants, Taylor Hicks, who won season five, and Bucky Covington, who finished eighth last year, shared their thoughts on "The Early Show" Friday about the selection of DeGeneres and the prospect of a new season with her on the judging panel.
Hicks said DeGeneres' jokes will definitely be better than fellow judge Simon Cowell's.
Covington, a DeGeneres fan, agreed, saying, "I think it would be great to have someone call Simon out on his corny jokes."
"I think it's going to be great," Hicks said. "I think she bring as lot of entertainment value to the show. I think that she's a great personality, and she might have a little bit of more of a musical chop than we think she does."
He added that despite her lack of musical training, her involvement in the entertainment industry will be her strength.
"I think the panel of judges represent the music industry very well," he said. "And I think with Ellen you you get kind of an all-around entertainer. And I definitely can identify with that."
Covington pointed out that DeGeneres and the rest of the judges aren't even the final say in who wins -- the people are by their voting calls to the show. Covington used himself as an example, saying he heard "loud and clear" from Cowell that Cowell didn't like country music, but Covington still advanced in the competition, due to his support from viewers.
Hicks joked, "We need to get Simon (Cowell) and Ellen in a singing competition and determine which has the best musical quality."
Covington said, "I'm going to say my vote would be on Ellen."