'Bachelor' Standout Cassie's Ex Defends Her After Dual Dating Show Drama
By Jennifer Drysdale
Cassie Randolph is a fan favorite on Colton Underwood's season of The Bachelor-- but some fans are confused after seeing her appear on another dating show, Young Once.
The series "follows a diverse group of recent graduates from Christian college who are now navigating dating, marriage, debts, and career decisions against the backdrop of life in Southern California," including Randolph and her on-again, off-again ex-boyfriend, Caelan Tiongson.
Though the show just aired the first episode of its new season, it concluded filming before Randolph appeared on The Bachelor. Tiongson took to Instagram on Wednesday to set the record straight on their relationship, explaining that they had both moved on by the time she started dating Underwood on The Bachelor in September.
"Make no mistake that Young Once was filmed before The Bachelor, and the fact that they are airing at the same time is a strategy to attract viewers," he wrote. "Both Cassie and I made mistakes in our relationship, but I think we’d both agree it dragged out much too long anyways. This is because I persistently pursued a reunion and she knowingly kept the door open at times because of indecisiveness, neither of which matters because it has been over for good since before she went on The Bachelor."
Tiongson continued, explaining that he and Randolph just weren't the right fit, but that he wishes her "nothing but success and happiness moving forward."
"Her decision to go on The Bachelor was a decisive moment in my life to move forward so why couldn’t it serve as that for her as well? If I met my dream girl a month after our final closing this summer that would just be how God had it planned for me. Nobody has the right to tell her whether or not she has good intentions," he said. "Cassie will eventually explain her side and I endorse whatever she says because there is no reason for her to hide the truth."
"I thought this would be the best way to preserve the truth and encourage the trolls to check themselves before tearing down a good human being," he concluded, explaining that he wanted to protect Randolph against any "negativity." "Life is about moving forward, not dwelling on the past ?."
Randolph also addressed their relationship in a post on her Instagram on Wednesday. The blonde beauty said that she and Tiongson had filmed the first season of Young Once in 2015, and after their breakup, they unexpectedly filmed a follow-up, which "put Caelan and I directly back in each other’s lives as our social circle overlaps."
"We filmed for several weeks prior to Caelan heading to Asia to play pro basketball and before I found out that I was cast for Bachelor. The timing of everything was completely chance," she explained. "I care very much about Caelan and I want nothing but the best for him and his life."
Bachelor viewers couldn't deny the connection between Randolph and Underwood after Monday's episode of the ABC dating show, which showed the pair getting romantic in bed. During an interview with ET on Tuesday, Underwood opened up about their steamy one-on-one date.
"In that moment, I obviously felt good," he said of his comment that he wanted to "go all in" with her. "I felt really good, and I think it was important for me to just show that with her."
The Bachelor airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC -- join ET's Bachelor Nation Facebook group here.