Photo: Courtesy of ABC
We were hoping for this: Bachelorette Kaitlyn Bristowe's second runner-up and fan favorite Ben Higgins is confirmed as the next Bachelor. A source confirmed to Us Weekly that the baby-faced sweetheart — for whom Kaitlyn and her season's winner Shawn Booth vouched — will take the reins as the popular ABC franchise's leading man when season 20 starts in January.
But it gets even juicier: Higgins reportedly put the kibosh on a budding flirtation with Bachelor in Paradise star Tenley Molzahn so as not affect his new gig. He also recently turned down a promotion at work!
"They want to hook up but haven't," a source told Us. "They're being careful not to jeopardize Ben H.'s Bachelor stint."
Even Kaitlyn, who tearfully said goodbye to Ben last season and proclaimed she was jealous of the girl who would get to marry him one day, hoped he'd be Bachelor. On various post-finale interviews she exclaimed how great he would be; her fiancé and the season's winner, Shawn, also stated he'd make a great lead. "He'd make the perfect Bachelor. He deserves nothing but the best," Shawn said, according to Us.
Nick Viall, the vilified runner-up from Kaitlyn and Andi's season, also admits that Ben would be a great choice: "I have a lot of respect for Ben H. He's a really, really great guy. He is as sweet as everyone thinks he is," Viall said in a Huffington Post podcast.
If he does, indeed, take the reins, he'll make a great Bachelor. Ben was a notable sweetheart from Kaitlyn's season, and not bad on the eyes, either. We're sure he'll be judicious, respectful, and hopefully come out with a fiancée we can root for!