She’s calling dibs! Kelsea Ballerini and Chase Stokes haven’t confirmed their relationship status — but fans are already rooting for the rumored couple.
The country singer and the Outer Banks star were first linked in January 2023 after they were spotted together at the College Football Playoff National Championship in Los Angeles. That same month, Stokes snuck a cozy photo of himself sitting beside Ballerini into an Instagram slideshow.
“Lil recap,” the Maryland native captioned the carousel, to which Ballerini replied: “Go vols 🙈.”
At the time, the “Hole in the Bottle” artist uploaded a photo dump of her own, which she captioned, “New boot goofin.” One snap showed her repping her hometown of Knoxville, Tennessee, on a baseball cap — and Stokes boldly complimented the look in the comments section.
“I like dat hat ma’am,” he wrote. (Stokes previously dated his Outer Banks costar Madelyn Cline from 2020 to 2021.)
Neither Ballerini nor the Beach House actor immediately addressed whether they’re dating, but the “Doin’ My Best” songstress weighed in on the speculation via TikTok. Her January 2023 upload showed a screenshot of a DeuxMoi submission about her love life — including claims she was flirting with someone who wasn’t Stokes — following her split from Morgan Evans.
“I know, I know, I know,” she said in the clip. “Stop reading, stop reading. Stop looking. But what is happening, guys. What? Let’s not do this.”
The CMA Award winner announced via social media in August 2022 that she and Evans called it quits after five years of marriage. She filed for divorce that same month.
As news of the musicians’ breakup made headlines, a source exclusively told Us Weekly that Ballerini and Evans had “been working on their marriage for many years and even tried therapy” before their split. “They ultimately decided that they had no choice but to officially separate,” the insider added.
The twosome settled their divorce in November 2022. Both Ballerini and the Aussie crooner have been candid about coping with the aftermath of their split in the public eye.
“I think when there’s a big life decision like that, it’s not a sudden one,” the “Heartfirst” performer told CBS Mornings in October 2022. “And there’s a lot that happens before that becomes public. So, I’m on my, like, active healing journey. … It’s not chaotic. It’s not, like, volatile, it just didn’t work. And that sometimes is like a difficult narrative to get your head around when you’re like, ‘Oh, my gosh. This is a good person. And I’m a good person. And this is just no longer good anymore.’”
Scroll down for a complete breakdown of Ballerini and Stokes’ relationship: