EXCLUSIVE: Arie Luyendyk Jr. Was Asked to Be 'The Bachelor' Before: 'He Didn't Want to Be Embarrassed Again'

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There's a reason Thursday's big Bachelor announcement came as such a shock to Bachelor Nation -- Arie Luyendyk Jr. didn't want the news getting out until it was official.

A source close to Luyendyk Jr. tells ET that news of his appointment as Bachelor No. 22 was kept tightly under wraps because he was in talks for the position years earlier, and "didn't want to be embarrassed like that again." 

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"Arie is so excited about being Bachelor! He was nervous to tell anyone, so he texted his friends about it this morning," the source reveals, adding that not even his friends knew about the announcement before Thursday. 

"In the back of his mind, he was worried it was going to be like with Chris Soules' season when Arie thought it was going to be him and was telling people it was him. Then, they pulled out and Arie was so pissed," the source explains. "He didn't want to be embarrassed like that again, so he kept it under wraps this time."

Luyendyk Jr. confirmed how secretive the news was during his Bachelor debut on Good Morning America on Thursday. 

"I kept things under wraps because I didn't know how this would turn out," he revealed. "It's been such a quick turn of events and my family doesn't know. So now they know, so they know along with you guys."

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Until Wednesday, it looked as if Peter Kraus would be the Bachelor franchise's next lead. See more in the video below.