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Colton Underwood: I Was ‘Blindsided’ to Hear Tia Still Had Feelings for Me

Colton Underwood Blindsided Tia Booth Love Admission
Colton Underwood and Tia Booth.ABC/Craig Sjodin (2)

Setting the record straight. Colton Underwood cleared the air about his elimination from Becca Kufrin’s Bachelorette season and revealed why Tia Booth’s confession caught him off guard.

Becca, 28 sent fans into a frenzy during the Monday, July 16, episode when she sent Colton, 26, packing after her close friend Tia, 26, who previously dated the former NFL pro, admitted she still has feelings for him.

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“I was actually blindsided. I was not expecting that at all. I thought, ‘I’m glad the Tia thing is in the past’ because I thought it was in the past,” Colton said on Ben Higgins and Ashley Iaconetti’s podcast later on Monday. Although the athlete, Becca and Tia all talked about their potential love triangle during an earlier episode and Tia declared she was over Colton, this was not the case. “After we left that spa date, all three of us spent time talking to one another and we got it all out there and we were all one the same page and moving forward with it, so it was a little shocking when I heard she came back to talk to Becca.”

Colton Underwood Blindsided Tia Booth Love Admission
Colton Underwood and Tia Booth. ABC/Craig Sjodin (2)

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But Colton isn’t convinced Tia’s confession entirely led Becca to send him home. “I don’t know if we can completely say my future with Becca was ended 100 percent on Tia. I’m sure that was a heavy portion of why my future with Becca was ended, so yeah, of course I was sad,” he recalled. “I was disappointed, I was frustrated, I was pissed off. I had every emotion going through me at that time and I didn’t know how to process it. I was speechless. I had nothing to say because I was so caught off guard.”

The Legacy Foundation creator also revealed how he and Tia, who competed alongside Becca on Arie Luyendyk Jr.’s 22nd Bachelor season earlier this year, first crossed paths.

“I went to casting weekend for The Bachelorette and after leaving they said, ‘Hey, we’re releasing our girls this weekend. Take a look at them, let us know your top three.’ So I sent my top in three in, which between all three of us was Lauren [Burnham], Becca and Tia. Those were the girls, just off of their head shots. It’s very shallow, just off of physical appearance right off the bat,” Colton explained. “So I sent those back to the casting and I actually followed all three on Instagram and Tia followed me back. I wasn’t expecting that and I was pretty shy and I wasn’t going to DM her, it just is what is. I was watching Stranger Things about a week later and I put it on my Story and she [direct messaged] me and commented on Stranger Things. So this all started off of her [direct messaging] me about El from Stranger Things and we casually started talking, exchanged numbers, FaceTimed, and the second day that I talked to her, I actually disclosed to her that I was a finalist for the show and I was probably going on the show.”

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Although the pair met up in Los Angeles for a romantic weekend nearly one month later, they decided to stay platonic. “We went hiking at Runyon Canyon with rescue puppies and we went out to a steak dinner … It was a great date, great weekend, but I just left there knowing that she’s going back to Arkansas and I’m going back to Denver,” he said. “We had somewhat of a spark, somewhat of a connection, but there just wasn’t enough for me to say, ‘Hey, this is my person. I’m closing all my options out.’

The Bachelor Nation stars will reunite and seemingly rekindle their romance on Bachelor in Paradise season 5, which premiers on ABC Tuesday, August 7, at 8 p.m. ET.

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