The 30-year-old former phlebotomist took over for Clare Crawley after the 39-year-old hairstylist got engaged to contestant Dale Moss within the first two weeks of production. In addition to bringing in Tayshia, ABC brought back four men — Peter Giannikopoulos, Noah Erb, Montel Hill and Spencer Roberston— who were sent home from the Palm Springs set before cameras started rolling. (The network vetted 42 men for the season, but ultimately picked 31 to meet Clare on night one.)
Us Weekly broke the news at the time that production reached out to the almost-suitors because a shakeup was going down on set. After Clare and Dale’s proposal, fans watched Tayshia meet her 16 remaining contestants and the four newcomers.
“I don’t remember the specifics, but it wasn’t terribly long … Clare and Dale went on their one-on-one and had their proposal, and then the show shut down for a couple of days and then Tayshia started right away,” Robert Mills told Entertainment Tonight. “[The four new men] were guys who were sort of in the hopper and ready to go and came in and then quarantined. There’s a lot of guys who either don’t make the show for various reasons or we’ve met through casting before, and these four seemed perfect for Tayshia. And they certainly made a splash.”
During her first night as the new lead, the Bachelor Winer Games alum handed out her first impression rose to Spencer.
“I couldn’t have asked for, like, a better group of men,” Tayshia gushed exclusively to Us ahead of her first episode. “I’ve always said that I want an older, more mature man that has depth and all of these guys have exactly that. It was, like, perfect.”
One man who won’t be scoring any roses from Tayshia? Her ex-husband, Josh Bourelle, whom she was married to from February 2016 to October 2017. While some fans were convinced her former spouse was set to make an appearance after a man is labeled as Josh in the closed captioning in a Twitter promo, Tayshia later shut down the speculation.
“I am dating 20 men on ABC, every single week, so the fact that we are continuously talking about my past relationship that was I don’t know, three years ago, I don’t get understand it,” she said via Instagram Stories. “He’s living his life, I’m living my life.”
Scroll through for a complete rose tracker for season 16 of The Bachelorette: