May 12, 2017 10:13 PM

Jerry O’Connell is confessing he knew his co-hosting gig opposite Live‘s Kelly Ripa was only temporary.

The actor, 43, jokingly admitted that the rejection was hard at first, but nonetheless is happy for Ryan Seacrest, who beat out multiple contenders after a year-long search.

“I just left my house. I’ve been crying the entire time,” O’Connell said during his interview on KTLA Friday. “I knew. I did know,” he said of Seacrest’s hiring before it was made public.

“It is a little scary because you know some secret information that stockholders and people of power have made, but [Seacrest] is great. He’s an old friend of all of ours … He’s great for that job,” the husband of actress Rebecca Romijn added.

O’Connell has been on Live over 20 times, including guest visits, and even stopped by the show for three days at a time on multiple occasions.

Lorenzo Bevilaqua/The Disney/ABC Home Entertainment and TV Distribution

“Like a weird ex, I watch them every morning,” he revealed. “It’s like going to check your ex’s Facebook page, ‘Let’s see what they’re up to. I see you’re seeing someone else. Status: in a relationship.’ ”

But O’Connell has no hard feelings.

“I love it. I love her,” he said, adding, “There’s something super fun about it, and I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, doing it with her, Kelly’s the best!”

FROM PEN: Ryan Seacrest Admits He Was Insecure About How Good the Other Live Candidates Were

Before announcing the former American Idol host as her official “TV husband” earlier this month, Ripa, 46, spent a year trying out 67 potential guest hosts, including Seacrest, following former co-host Michael Strahan‘s departure last May.

“He is just so professional and kind to everyone — and it’s not just ‘on-camera kind,’ ” she told PEOPLE. “He doesn’t turn it on and off. He’s kind backstage, and he’s kind first thing in the morning. He’s just a nice guy. That’s what I envisioned we would have with the new host.”

Live with Kelly & Ryan airs weekdays (check local listings).

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