Sanchez is U.S. mag's pick to win 'Idol'

Posted at 03/07/12 8:24 PM

MANILA, Philippines – The U.S. magazine Entertainment Weekly has selected Filipino-Mexican Jessica Sanchez as its top pick to win this season’s “American Idol.”

Sanchez is on top of the magazine’s “Power List” for this week, followed by Phillip Phillips, Jr. and Skylar Laine.

Early favorites Colton Dixon and Joshua Ledet round up the magazine’s Top 5, while Jermaine Jones is at the bottom at No. 13.

The magazine's "Power List" changes every week.

For Wednesday’s performance show (Thursday morning in Manila), the male contestants must sing a Stevie Wonder song, while the female contestants will pay tribute to the late Whitney Houston.

Sanchez has already proven that she can handle power notes when she sang Aretha Franklin's “(You Make Me Feel Like A) Natural Woman” during her audition in her hometown of San Diego, California. She also took on Celine Dion in her final solo, "The Prayer," in Las Vegas.

Last week, Sanchez earned a standing ovation from all three “Idol” judges – Steven Tyler, Randy Jackson and Jennifer Lopez – for her rendition of Jennifer Hudson’s “I Love You I Do” – despite suffering from swollen vocal chords.

“Her lower register (the one that started out the song) is much weaker than her terrific higher range, but once she got going this turned into of the most memorable songs of the week,” Entertainment Weekly said of her performance of the “Dreamgirls” number.

“She's young, cute, hungry, and loves to shop at the mall. I can see her winning it,” the magazine predicted.