It's official, Bachelor Nation. After months of speculation, Chris Harrison teasers, quote analyzation, and just general curiosity, the leading man for Bachelor Season 23 has been revealed. ABC didn't pull an Arie and bring back a blast from the past this time — Colton is The Bachelor. The sweet football player from Becca's season of The Bachelorette and Bachelor in Paradise Season 5 is next in line to hand out roses and potentially find his wife. #TeamJason, #TeamBlake, and hey — let's throw in #TeamPeter, I am sorry to break this to you.
The big news was announced on Tuesday, Sept. 4 on Good Morning America.
Colton Underwood entered the Bachelor franchise universe as a contestant on Bachelorette Season 14 this spring. The Denver native with an NFL past made it all the way to the crucial hometown dates until getting cut short following a complicated situation that involved one of Becca's former Bachelor competitors — Tia Booth. He and Tia had a short-lived fling prior to his Bachelorette casting, but called it quits so he could explore the opportunity fully. The pair were reunited on Bachelor in Paradise, where Tia made it clear that she still had feelings for Colton and there was unfinished business between them. The first few episodes were dominated by their will-they-won't-they saga, until they decided they would give things a go. That is, until the 3-hour Labor Day episode on Sept. 3, when the couple broke up and both Tia and Colton left the show. Perfect timing, huh?
Colton has been extremely candid and open throughout his reality TV career thus far, which is why he might turn out to be an interesting headliner for the Bachelor's upcoming installment. Not afraid wear his heart on his T-shirt sleeve, Colton broke down into sobs on BiP when Becca returned for a brief cameo. On The Bachelorette, he shared the fact that he's a virgin. Prior to the official announcement, even host Chris Harrison chimed in why Colton has the makings of a fascinating Bachelor. Speaking to ET, the host explained,
Then there’s the virgin angle. We have this guy who was brought to tears during Men Tell All about dealing with this. If he’s willing to put that on display as the Bachelor, I would find that fascinating in this day and age. … The women having to deal with that — I think it would be a fascinating story. And that’s a lot of what makes a good Bachelor. It’s a compelling argument if he’s single and willing to do it.
Colton clearly has a sensitive side that he has no intention of concealing. That could continue to create riveting TV.
Colton is known for his professional football career, but he's also committed to charity work. He's the founder of The Colton Underwood Legacy Foundation, a non-profit organization that "raises funds for research and provides equipment and resources for people of all ages living with Cystic Fibrosis." He also dated gymnast Aly Raisman.
Even though Becca's pick for the Bachelor job was Jason, it looks like Colton will be taking on the coveted position. After everything he's gone through on television so far, perhaps he'll find the true love he's been waiting for.