'Big Brother 17': Seventh Juror Talks Shock Exit, Love for Liz and Leaving His Girlfriend

THR talks to the former pro wrestler Austin about being betrayed by Vanessa and leaving his girlfriend for Liz.

The biggest blindside of Big Brother 17 left Austin and Judas sent out the front door with not even enough time to grab their shoes. Before the former professional wrestler entered the Big Brother house he told The Hollywood Reporter about his view on showmances saying, "showmances are the death of you in this game." Now, moments after his eviction and before he was locked up in the jury house Austin talks to THR again about his change of heart, leaving his girlfriend for Liz, the blindside by Vanessa, and the turtle neck he'll wear to the Nolan family dinner. 

(Disclosure: Because the nine-person jury is underway, houseguests will now answer questions via email from THR. It's stipulated that questions cannot in any way be a potential interference to the game and are required to be approved by production before given to the houseguests.)

You seemed in total shock when you walked out of the house - completely blindsided.  What was going through your head at that moment?

Vanessa completely betrayed me.  I knew it was a possibility because it’s Big Brother, but her whole game was about playing with integrity and not betraying me since we made a final two deal on the second day.  She swore to me on her family, her girlfriend, the LGBT community and the Bible and she’ll have to deal with those consequences of making those pledges and going back on it. Then, I thought about Liz.  I felt so bad that she would have to stay in that environment.  Her heart is too good to play with people like this and I can’t be there to protect her.  That’s the hardest part for me. 

Jace made a comment in the beginning of the game that Liz was hot and you said, “I don’t think so obviously I have a girlfriend I’m in love with.” What happened to the love for your girlfriend that made you leave her for Liz?

Obviously with Jace, nothing we say to each was serious.  I was being facetious when I said she wasn’t attractive.  Part of me talking openly about my girlfriend in the house was about strategy.  The truth is, that my girlfriend and I were in a rocky place.  I knew this game would most  likely be the divide that ended our relationship one way or another.  I still never imagined being involved in a showmance but overtime, getting to know Liz as a person, we connected in a way I never connected with someone and we fell in love.  I don’t regret it because it’s the best thing I’m taking away from this experience. 

You told me before you entered the house that you wouldn’t have a showmance because you have a girlfriend and “showmances are the death of you in this game.” What made you change your mind?

I did not change my mind.  My heart just took over my body.  I fell in love, I’m not afraid to say it and I don’t think it was the death of me in this game, I think it’s what kept me alive.

What did you think about Zingbot’s zing to Liz?

I was very angry about it because before Liz would even consider progressing our relationship, I had to talk to her, on camera, in front of the live feeds and tell her exactly where I stood personally with my girlfriend.  That the situation was very rocky and we were moving in different directions.  Liz was always hesitant about doing anything that would be perceived negatively by America.  When she got that zing, I was very hurt for her since she never did anything wrong.  I never wanted to break up with a girlfriend on TV, but if we had denied the feelings that we had, we both would have regretted that. 

If your girlfriend played Big Brother, and left you for someone in the house how would you have felt?

I would have been hurt, humiliated, angry and anything else you can think of.  I hate that I did that to her, personally.  My decision to move on in my life was very complicated, there was a lot going on that people don’t know about the relationship and in the high pressurized situation that is Big Brother, feelings develop quickly and you don’t know how long you’re going to be there.  I wish it could have happened a different way but my entire life I have followed my heart and I wasn’t going to stop now. 


How do you think your showmance with Liz compares to past Big Brother showmances and do you think you could get married?

I would like to think that it compares well with past showmances.  We survived a very long time in the house.  Viewers saw the relationship grow from flirting to more intimate moments and it was all genuine.  I don’t think we were the perfect Jeff and Jordan couple, we were more of a gritty, raw, “Brenchel” kind of couple.  I hope people enjoyed it.  As far as marriage goes, I don’t think either Liz or myself is looking at that right now, but never say never. 

What are you bringing to the Nolan residence for Christmas dinner that will impress Liz’s parents?

Probably a turtle neck, gloves and anything else that will hide my tattoos.  But in all seriousness, bringing my heart that is 100% in love with their daughter. 

If her parents ask you to shave your ponytail beard, will you?


You have a lot of tattoos. Will you be getting a Big Brother tattoo and what will it be of?

Well, I already have a silhouette on my ankle of the Big Brother house.  So maybe, I’ll fill it in? Or, if I stay bitter, maybe I’ll cover it up. 

Would you get a Big Brother tattoo? What did you think of what Austin said before the game? Do you think Liz's parents will make him shave the ponytail beard? Sound off in the comments below and stay tuned to The Live Feed for all things Big Brother