Emmanuel Acho will replace Chris Harrison as host of the After the Final Rose special for Matt James‘ season 25 finale of The Bachelor. The former NFLer and Fox Sports broadcaster shared the news Saturday, hitting up Twitter to write: “IT’S OFFICIAL: I’ve accepted the Rose & am honored to be hosting the @bachelorabc After the Final Rose this year.”
He added: “It’s been a pivotal season & this episode will be one of the most storied shows in its history. Empathy is needed and change is coming. See y’all then!”
He also hinted at big changes ahead: “I’m the author of 2020 NYT best seller, ‘Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man.’ A book that answers all the racial questions you’ve been too afraid to ask. Go read it,” he added. “I also graduated from the University of Texas with a masters degree, I played for 4 years in the NFL, and I currently host a sports show, @sfyonfs1. Lastly, I love being a bridge for reconciliation. Our world is disconnected & divided, my goal is to unify.”
Bachelor Nation has been fired up and under fire after multiple missteps and racism scandals. ABC reportedly tried to get the first Black Bachelorette Rachel Lindsay to step in, but she refused, though she did publicly name-drop him as a replacement. As Lindsay pointed out, he has no connection to the troubled franchise, he’s Black and he’s an outspoken advocate of equality and opportunity for all.
When GMA shared the news on Twitter, he responded: “Life changing. I can't wait!” No word if he’ll step in on a more permanent basis.
Harrison stepped aside and will not join the After the Final Rose special after defending Rachael Kirkconnell against charges of racism to Lindsay during an Extra interview. Instead of denouncing her alleged racism he said: “First and foremost, I don’t know exactly what’s going on. I haven’t talked to Rachael about it, we all need to have a little grace, a little understanding, a little compassion. I have seen some stuff online. Again, this judge, jury, executioner thing where people are just tearing this girl’s life apart. … Until I actually hear this woman have a chance to speak, who am I to say any of this.”