How Next Bachelor Clayton Echard Was Introduced on Michelle Young's Season of The Bachelorette

Find out how Clayton Echard made his Bachelor Nation debut on the Oct. 19 premiere of The Bachelorette.

By Alyssa Ray Oct 20, 2021 12:29 AMTags

Clayton Echard has made his Bachelor Nation debut.

On Tuesday, Oct. 19, the upcoming Bachelor for season 26 was formally introduced to viewers on Michelle Young's season of The Bachelorette. In the introduction package teasing Young's season 18 suitors, Echard popped up with a segment that screamed "Will you accept this rose?"

For instance, right out of the gate, Echard highlighted that family is the most important thing to him, calling them his "rock."

"I have two younger brothers," he continued. "And we're so close, [it] might as well have been a mini fraternity."

We're sure this checks a box on the producers' "What to Look for in a Potential Bachelor" list. We can't be the only ones eager for the whole Echard brood to appear on season 26, right? Alas, we're getting ahead of ourselves.

During his segment in the intro, Echard teased that being a former Division I football athlete—again, another box checked—is something that connects him to Young, who was once a star collegiate basketball player.

We Did a Social Media Deep-Dive on Michelle Young's Bachelorette Contestants. You're Welcome.

"It says so much as far as what type of person she is," he told the Bachelorette camera. "And I love the fact that she's a teacher. My mom's a teacher as well. So, I have a lot of respect for people who do that."

Speaking of Echard's mom, she had a little message for Young: "I think someday he will make a wonderful partner and, who knows, maybe it will be you."

Seems like even Mama Echard is on board with the athlete-turned-medical sales rep becoming the next lead for the ABC dating competition.

Sami Drasin, Craig Sjodin/ABC

Though Echard's introduction was perfectly curated, his limo exit and first meeting with Young was, er, far from a touchdown. Specifically, Echard presented Young with a yard stick and suggested that she spank him on the bottom, which we could've done without.

We're guessing that Young felt similarly, as she noted, "I don't think I ever thought I'd be spanking a grown man's butt on national television. But here I am!"

Thankfully, this didn't deter Young, who called Echard "cute."

Remember, you can't get too invested in these two, as it clearly doesn't work out.

The Bachelor Season 26: Meet Clayton Echard's Potential Suitors

For any and all Bachelor Nation updates, click here.

The Bachelorette airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. on ABC.

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