Jordin Sparks Says Rihanna Performing at 2023 Super Bowl After Welcoming Her Baby Is a 'Big Deal'

The Halftime Show headliner became a first-time mom in May 2022

PHOENIX, ARIZONA - FEBRUARY 09: Rihanna poses on stage during the Apple Music Super Bowl LVII Halftime Show Press Conference at Phoenix Convention Center on February 09, 2023 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Roc Nation); LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 03: (FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY) Jordin Sparks attends MusiCares Persons of the Year Honoring Berry Gordy and Smokey Robinson at Los Angeles Convention Center on February 03, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Rodin Eckenroth/WireImage)
Photo: Kevin Mazur/Getty for Roc Nation; Rodin Eckenroth/WireImage

Jordin Sparks is cheering for Rihanna ahead of her Super Bowl Halftime Show!

At the second annual Cash App & Visa h.wood Homecoming pop-up experience Friday in Scottsdale, Ariz., the American Idol alum spoke with PEOPLE about her excitement for the "Love on the Brain" singer, who'll be taking over "the biggest stage ever" as a new mom.

"It's a big deal...I really, really want her to have the best show," Sparks, 33, said. "I've been sending so much good energy to her since I heard since she was doing it, 'cause after I had my first son, I was nervous to get back out onstage."

rihanna and son
Rihanna and her son. Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic; Rihanna/TikTok

Sparks, who shared on Instagram Wednesday that she'd be returning to her home state of Arizona to serve as the Super Bowl LVII in-stadium host, noted that she's looking forward to watching Rihanna's show in person.

"I'm so excited," she enthused. "I've actually never seen her perform live, so I'm really, really grateful to be working the game. I'll be right there on the field to be able to watch her. It's an honor."

Regarding what song Sparks thinks Rihanna, 34, should open with, she said, "You know, I think she should come out to 'Hard.' She should come out to 'Hard' or 'Run This Town.'"

RELATED VIDEO: Dr. Dre Gives Advice to Rihanna Ahead of Super Bowl 2023 Halftime Show Performance: 'Have Fun'

After welcoming her 8-month-old son with A$AP Rocky in May, and releasing her first song in nearly seven years in October, Rihanna soon recognized that balancing motherhood and career aspirations can be challenging, but also extraordinarily rewarding.

"When you become a mom, there's something that just happens where you feel like you can take on the world. You can do anything, and the Super Bowl is one of the biggest stages in the world," the "Diamonds" singer said. "So, as scary as that was...there's something exhilarating about the challenge of it all, and it's important for me to do this this year."

"It's important for representation. It's important for my son to see that."

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Super Bowl LVII, featuring the Kansas City Chiefs against the Philadelphia Eagles, will kick off on the evening of Feb. 12.

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