Michelle Young’s The Bachelorette 2021: Season 18 premiere date, cast and more

The Bachelorette 2021 Michelle Young
(Image credit: ABC)

Steady, are you ready? Because the premiere of Michelle Young's The Bachelorette 2021 is just days away. ABC has announced the 30 men who will be in the cast and Reality Steve has already revealed the Michelle's winner in a huge Bachelorette spoiler. And that's the only major spoiler — one of the other suitors has already been chosen to be the next Bachelor!

UPDATE: While Michelle eliminated Clayton, he's not leaving the spotlight. In fact, he's the star of The Bachelor 2022. And we've got all the details including the Season 26 release date. The rest of the original article remains as follows:

Michelle is the second Bachelorette this year, following Katie Thurston. Katie's season recently ended and the finale revealed she got engaged to Blake Moynes. Both women were on Matt James' season of The Bachelor, with Michelle finishing as the runner-up.  

Now, she'll get her own chance to find love as The Bachelorette. "I am ready. I really do think this process works," she said during the casting announcement. "When you get to set down all the outside distractions and really dive in, I think you can learn a lot about somebody. I'm just excited. I'm ready to get started."

Helping along her journey are returning hosts and former Bachelorettes Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe.

Here's everything you need to know about Michelle Young's The Bachelorette 2021 season.

Who is Michelle Young, The Bachelorette 2021?

Michelle Young is a 28-year-old former Division I basketball player from Edina, Minnesota who currently is an elementary school teacher. 

She joined the cast of The Bachelor season 25 to vie for the heart of Matt James. Michelle finished as the runner-up. Here's a photo of her on location filming the new season, shared on Twitter by producer Mike Fleiss:

Michelle Young on location for The Bachelorette season 18

(Image credit: Mike Fleiss/Twitter)

In the "After the Final Rose" special, Michelle and Katie Thurston were named the next two Bachelorettes, with Katie going first. The reason was so that Michelle could film during the summer, when she had time off from teaching. 

Michelle has described herself as loyal, compassionate and supportive, and someone who shows love through acts of service. Her dream man is "confident but not cocky" and looks at her as an equal. Her ABC bio notes that Michelle enjoys spending time with friends, hiking and wine tasting. She is looking for the superman to her superwoman.

Michelle Young’s The Bachelorette 2021 premiere date

The Bachelorette season 18 has set a premiere date of Tuesday, October 19 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

New episodes will air weekly on Tuesday nights. 

That's a departure from the Bachelor franchise's usual spot on Mondays. During the fall season, ABC always airs Dancing With the Stars on Monday nights. Last year, The Bachelorette season 16 was delayed from its usual summer schedule due to the pandemic. It was moved to the fall and also aired on Tuesdays.

Michelle Young’s The Bachelorette 2021 teaser trailer

During Katie Thurston's Bachelorette finale, fans got a promo with the briefest glimpse of Michelle Young's upcoming season. Little Mix's "Bounce Back" plays in the background as Michelle enters a hallway filled with roses. Wearing an one-shoulder white gown, she glides along, caressing roses. 

Michelle Young’s The Bachelorette 2021 cast

In July, ABC released the names, ages and photos of 35 men who are potential Bachelorette season 18 contestants. The final cast list has now been revealed with 30 of those men.

Their average age is about 29 and quite a few are athletes — which could mean they're good matches for Michelle, a former basketball player herself. One, Joe, even attend the University of Minnesota and fans are speculating that he and Michelle already know each other.

Here's the full list of Michelle's 30 suitors:

  • Alec, 29, Forest, Virginia.
  • Brandon J., 26, Portland, Oregon.
  • Brandon K., 29, Sulphur, Louisiana.
  • Bryan, 30, Houlton, Wisconsin.
  • Casey, 36, Parkland, Florida.
  • Christopher G., 27, Halifax, Nova Scotia.
  • Chris S., 28, New Orleans.
  • Clayton, 28, Eureka, Missouri.
  • Daniel, 26, Austin, Texas.
  • Edward, 27, Brownsville, Texas.
  • Garrett, 33, Salt Lake City.
  • Jack, 30, Greensboro, North Carolina.
  • Jamie, 32, Tacoma, Washington.
  • Joe, 28, Minneapolis.
  • Jomarri, 26, Portland, Oregon.
  • Leroy, 27, Durham, North Carolina.
  • LT, 38, Bellevue, Washington.
  • Martin, 28, Cordoba, Argentina.
  • Mollique, 36, Jameshill, Jamaica.
  • Nayte, 27, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.
  • Olumide, 28, Woodland Park, New Jersey.
  • Pardeep, 30, Brooklyn, New York.
  • Peter, 26, Bellmore, New York.
  • PJ, 30, Austin, Texas.
  • Rich, 32, Munroe Falls, Ohio.
  • Rodney, 29, Rancho Cucamonga, California.
  • Romeo, 32, New York.
  • Ryan, 30, Sanger, California.
  • Spencer, 25, Cleveland, Ohio.
  • Will, 29, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

Bachelor spoiler king Reality Steve revealed that one of those men, Clayton Echard, has been selected as the next Bachelor. ABC hasn't confirmed it yet, but Clayton has already been seen filming the show and a bunch of the potential cast members were (briefly) shown on Facebook. Here Clayton is on Instagram:

Why was Clayton, who hasn't even been introduced yet on The Bachelorette, chosen for the coveted role over established names like Michael Allio, Andrew Spencer or Greg Grippo? Not even Reality Steve knows. Guess Clayton somehow stands out on Michelle's season!

Michelle Young’s The Bachelorette 2021 filming locations

The Bachelorette season 18 filmed first at the Renaissance Esmeralda Resort & Spa in Indian Wells, California.

The last three seasons of the Bachelor franchise have filmed in one location, to maintain a bubble during the coronavirus pandemic.

However, Michelle's season will move beyond the resort to Minneapolis, Minnesota, where she is from. 

Reality Steve revealed that Hometown Dates will actually occur in final four contestants' hometowns.

And the overnight dates and final rose ceremony was filmed in Punta de Mita, Mexico.

Michelle Young’s The Bachelorette 2021 spoilers

While Reality Steve doesn't have a ton of episodic info for Michelle's season, he has the biggest Bachelorette spoiler you can find — the name of the winner.

In a blog post, Steve wrote, "Had heard rumblings since the season ended but got the confirmation I needed the end of last week. Michelle is engaged to Nayte Olukoya."

As his bio on ABC.com notes, Nayte is a 27-year-old sales executive from Austin who is 6'8" and "always the life of the party."

On Twitter, Steve also revealed that Brandon Jones is the runner-up. Brandon is a 26-year-old traveling nurse recruiter from Portland, Oregon who is "a self-proclaimed basketball fiend."

In a previous column, Steve noted that Nayte, Joe and Peter make the final 12, since they were spotted filming 1-on-1 dates in Minnesota. 

Michelle and Joe attended a Twins/Rays baseball game, she and Nate went boating on Lake Minnetonka. Michelle and Peter visited her parents' house (which was not a hometown date). 

Steve reports that Clayton (the next Bachelor) at least makes it to Minnesota and was seen on a 10-person group date. 

Kelly Woo
Streaming Editor

Kelly is the streaming channel editor for Tom’s Guide, so basically, she watches TV for a living. Previously, she was a freelance entertainment writer for Yahoo, Vulture, TV Guide and other outlets. When she’s not watching TV and movies for work, she’s watching them for fun, seeing live music, writing songs, knitting and gardening.