Dan watched past Big Brothers to prepare

Big Brother 10 winner Dan Gheesling was not only a fan of the show (he started watching as a high school sophomore) but he re-watched past seasons of the show online to study before going into the house.

“I modeled my game after Will and Mike Boogie (from “Big Brother 2″), and built it from there. Here’s the thing: Some of these houseguests had seen maybe one season or hadn’t seen any seasons at all, and it’s like going into an exam. I tell my students you need to study for a test, and ‘Big Brother’ was like an examination for me, and I had nine full seasons I could study going into the house,” Dan told The Detroit News.

“The good thing about ‘Big Brother’ is a lot of the episodes are on the Internet, right on the CBS web site, and I would go back and watch a season at a time. Make no bones about it, it wasn’t easy. Who wants to sit in front of a computer 30 hours and study? I didn’t do it 30 hours at a time, but I’d do 5 hours here, 5 hours there,” he said. He did that during the casting process, because he only had “about two days” between being told he was officially chosen and leaving for the show.

Dan also says that while lying in the game was okay, there were lines he wasn’t willing to cross. “To me, winning the half million dollars was not worth losing the respect of the students that I taught. I figured I could pull off the fact that I’m playing a game and I lied for that reason, but I couldn’t pull that off if I got in any verbal arguments or raunchy conversations. I knew I couldn’t do that. And that’s not my personality anyways,” he said.

Dan doesn’t have big plans for his life beyond doing what he’s already doing. “[N]ow that I’ve won this money, I can probably stay at St. Mary’s the rest of my life because that’s what I want to do. … I feel like the roots I established in Michigan, the values and things like that, are so different than people in California. I owe so much to Michigan, and anything I can do to help the state, whether it’s little or big, I wanted to do.”

In other Dan interview news, Entertainment Weekly asked him why he always shouted in the Diary Room. Dan said, “I tried to be very inconspicuous, very calm, in the house. I’m very calm as a teacher. But after school as a coach I like to get fired up. So in the diary room I’d like to coach up America. That was my chance. I took it and ran with it.”

‘Big Brother’ winner talks about his game play, future plans [Detroit News]
‘Big Brother 10′ winner Dan Gheesling on house hygiene, the Judas comment, and his future plans [Entertainment Weekly]

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.