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'American Idol' judges predict a girl will take the twelfth-season competition

By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 01/16/2013 

American Idol's new judging panel has predicted a girl will win the show's twelfth season.

"Girls, do not disappoint the Dawg. I think it's the girls' year," Idol's veteran judge Randy Jackson told People about the upcoming season, which premieres tonight on Fox.

"There are some talented boys, but I must say, I think the girls could really win one."

American Idol hasn't seen a female champion since Jordin Sparks won the franchise's sixth season back in 2007.

"We haven't had a girl winner in so long," added Jackson.

Newbie judge Nicki Minaj also insisted the talented women this year will be the ones to beat.

"The girls are exceptional. I mean, a girl will definitely win this year, I think," the rapper told People, suggesting the ladies are more mature and experienced than the male singers. "[The females are] more seasoned, more poised, more professional."

Fellow new judge Keith Urban told the magazine the level of talent in general this season is overwhelming, which forced the panel to make some very difficult decisions during the rounds of auditions.

"All four of us had the conversation, 'What are we looking for?'" the country artist explained. "Because we can't send two million people to Hollywood."

In addition to Jackson, Minaj and Urban, pop icon Mariah Carey will also be serving on Idol's twelfth-season judging panel.

American Idol's twelfth-season debut tonight will air on Fox at 8PM ET/PT and mark the beginning of the show's regular Wednesday/Thursday broadcast schedule. The edition will kick off with six episodes covering last summer's audition tour.

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