Why Is Colton Underwood A Virgin At 26? ‘The Bachelor’ Explains On The Season 23 Premiere

Rick RowellABC

Colton Underwood’ virginity was a buzzy topic before he was cast as The Bachelor. The 26-year-old former NFL player went public with his secret when he was a contestant on Becca Kufrin’s season of The Bachelorette, and he was grilled by his fellow castmates during the Men Tell All special, where his manhood was even questioned.

Colton Underwood originally explained to Kufrin that he never dated much in high school because his focus was on his football career. He has also said he was waiting for “the right heart” to give his virginity to.

On The Bachelor Season 23 premiere, Colton went into more detail about why he has remained a virgin at age 26. In an emotional monologue, Underwood revealed that he grew up in a conservative environment and went to a Christian school where he was known as a “fat, chunky, awkward, weird kid” who never fit in. The future Bachelor star revealed that as a child he often didn’t want to go to school.

“Grade school Colton would probably be really shy and timid over the fact that he was just named The Bachelor,” Colton revealed.

Colton Underwood went on to explain that he didn’t have any confidence in himself until he reached his later years in high school and realized that football was the one thing he was good at.

“I never had girlfriends. I wanted to fit in so bad but I felt very alone. …The one thing I knew how to do really well was football. When things were good it was because of football. And that’s why I got lost in it.”

Dustin Vaughan #10 of the Dallas Cowboys is chased by Colton Underwood #49 of the San Diego Chargers during a preseason game at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, California.
Featured image credit: Stephen DunnGetty Inages

While Colton Underwood eventually made it to the NFL, he soon realized that he had no one to share any of his happy moments with. Colton’s sparse, post-college dating life includes brief relationships with Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman and Bachelorette star Becca Kufrin. The Bachelor star revealed he was ready to give his virginity to Kufrin, but she sent him home ahead of the Fantasy Suite dates.

On The Bachelor premiere, Colton Underwood sat down with host Chris Harrison to set the record straight about the real reason for his virginity.

“I’m not waiting for a ring. I’m not waiting for marriage. I’m waiting to be in love. I’m waiting for it to feel right, to take our relationship to the next step.”

Of course, it didn’t take long for Colton to get interrogated about his virginity by his Bachelor contestants. During the opening night cocktail party, contestant Erika McNutt directly asked the ABC star why he was still a virgin. Colton explained that he holds a lot of value in waiting for the right person.

“For me, growing up it was sort of a conscious decision at first. And then I started really diving deep into my professional career and my personal life took a back seat. And now that it’s happened I’m not just gonna randomly lose it on a one night stand. It’s not like I’m waiting for marriage. I’m waiting for the right person. I’m waiting for the right moment. It’s just very important to me and I hold a lot of value and a lot of stock into it.”

Colton Underwood clearly takes his status as The Bachelor franchise ‘s first-ever male virgin lead very seriously, telling The Hollywood Reporter shortly before his premiere that while he doesn’t “mind making light of it and having fun with it.” He also had to prepare to answer his contestants’ questions about his virginity and how he will handle the Fantasy Suites.

“Obviously, people are invested in that now because that’s sort of been my story and what people know me for,” Underwood told THR. “Hopefully after this, they know me for much more than just being a virgin.”

The Bachelor airs Mondays at 8 p.m. on ABC.