Who will win American Idol 2014 and hopefully become the next Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, or Phillip Phillips? Are there any true front-runners this season, or are we going to spend the whole rest of the season in a mad free-for-all scramble pretty much anyone could win?

Sam Woolf and Malaya Watson duet

Well, we know now that former fan favorite Sam Woolf is certainly no longer any kind of front-runner. Despite being rated highly in the betting odds and our reader’s polls for the first few weeks of the finals, Sam’s star has fallen hard. He was only saved from going home last week by the American Idol judges. We doubt he’ll be able to come back from that low of a point to be the one who won American Idol season 13 If he did, it would be a miracle and one for the record books!

The American Idol 2014 finalists are such a muddle at this point, it seems even Las Vegas has given up trying to take bets on the outcome of this season. We haven’t been able to find any current American Idol betting odds; the latest being from two weeks ago courtesy of Boveda Sports Book. In those odds, Caleb Johnson, Alex Preston, and Jena Irene Ascuitto were the top three most likely be the American Idol 2014 winner.

Oddly enough, although she is much lower ranked elsewhere, our readers are still in love with Malaya Watson every single week. She was voted the best Top 8 performance last week in our reader’s poll, taking 22 percent of the vote. Jena Irene placed second with 19 percent, followed by Alex Preston and Sam Woolf tied for third.

With all the ups and downs in the voting for the contestants, and the polls fluctuating wildly from week to week, who wins American Idol 2014? Well, despite our readers only ranking him in forth place, we’re still going to have to stick with our Caleb Johnson prediction for now.

Not only is Caleb consistent and receives strong praise from the judges and the audience on social media, but he’s never been in the bottom three. We think he’s stealing the Southern votes from Dexter Roberts, giving Caleb one of the most powerful voting blocks out there. He’s also likely pulling the biggest section of votes from the over-30 viewers — which just keep increasing in number every year as the show ages.

Even with all that, however, we wouldn’t necessarily call Caleb a “front-runner” per se. He often only lands in the middle of the pack in reader’s polls. And he was hardly running away with the race in the Vegas odds before they stopped bothering to print them anymore. He just happens to be the guy that hasn’t really screwed up yet in the finals and has had really strong, consistent performances.

Even so, unless something major happens over the next few weeks, we think Caleb still holds the best chance of winning. The only contestants we think could possibly give him a run for the money at this point are Alex Preston, Jena Irene, and possibly Malaya Watson. If any of them suddenly started pulling out ‘wow’ performances every week, they could bump Caleb right off his pedestal.

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