With preliminary auditions underway, the ratings monster is scrambling to find someone to fill the shoes of Cowell, whose presence dominated the show for nine seasons. Already, such names as Howard Stern, Elton John and Bret Michaels have been floated as possible replacements.
The latest three names surfaced in The Hollywood Reporter, which cited Fox Entertainment Chairman Peter Rice saying the new judge would be on the auditioning road show by September.
"Trump has quietly lobbied to replace Cowell despite his longtime association with NBC as producer and judge of “The Apprentice” franchise," the entertainment industry site reported.
Isaak, who has written and performed hit songs like “Wicked Game,” has also acted extensively and even had his own program on Showtime. Idol officials have also met with Connick, according to THR.
Michaels, who has TV chops after winning Trump's "Celebrity Apprentice," was briefly considered and has lobbied hard for the gig. But sources say he is now out of the running.