Chris Harrison, Rachel Lindsay and more reveal their top pick for the next franchise lead

By Jodi Guglielmi
August 26, 2019 02:44 PM
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Bachelor Nation is buzzing!

With Hannah Brown‘s season of The Bachelorette behind us and Bachelor in Paradise well underway, fans are eager to find out who the franchise will select as its next leading man.

An official name has not yet been announced, but there are plenty of qualified men who are ready and willing to take on the title of Bachelor.

And while fans may have their suspicions about who will be chosen, some of the franchise’s biggest stars have also weighed in.

Ahead of the announcement, here’s a breakdown of who the top contenders are, according to Bachelor Nation.

Mike Johnson, Derek Peth and Peter Weber
Ed Herrera/ABC; Craig Sjodin/ABC (2)

Mike Johnson

After the San Antonio, Texas, portfolio manager was sent home during The Bachelorette, fans immediately started campaigning on Twitter for Johnson to be cast on The Bachelor.

If chosen, Johnson would make history as the first black man and the first military veteran to become the Bachelor.

Chris Harrison even said Johnson stands a solid chance of taking the lead next season.

“Of course he’s a contender [for Bachelor],” Harrison told PEOPLE. “How could he not be a contender with that smile? He’s one of my favorite people we’ve ever had on the show. He’s a love of a man. I don’t know him that well, and I consider him a really good friend.”

Former Bachelorette Rachel Lindsay has been one of Johnson’s biggest advocates.

“I’m a huge proponent for Mike to be the next Bachelor,” Lindsay, 34, previously told PEOPLE. “I say it anytime I get a platform to talk about it. I just feel like they haven’t had a person of color, well, they had Juan Pablo — they never had a black male lead before.”

If he is chosen, there’s one famous fan guaranteed to tune-in: Demi Lovato. The singer was vocal about her interest in Johnson since the very beginning, calling him out as her pick as she watched an early season episode.

“Swing me, kiss me! Boo boo,” Lovato, 26, can be heard saying in one of her Instagram Stories while watching Johnson make his exit from the show. In another Story, she added, “Mike I accept your rose.”

Peter Weber

After Weber was left brokenhearted when Brown eliminated him during the season finale, devoted fans ramped up their impassioned pleas that the charming pilot become the new Bachelor.

Among those fans? Former Bachelor Colton Underwood.

“For me, it’s either between Peter or Derek [Peth],” he recently told PEOPLE. “I think Peter has a lot of the qualities that it takes to be a good Bachelor.”

And Weber also told PEOPLE he’d definitely be on board to give out roses if asked.

“I know this whole situation didn’t work out the way I was hoping, but Hannah truly showed me a different love than I had ever felt,” he told PEOPLE exclusively. “So it’s given me hope that I have more love to find. I wouldn’t say no to trying it again because I know the experience works. And I’m hopeful that my person is right around the corner.”

Derek Peth

An unexpected candidate, Peth became a fan-favorite on the current season of Bachelor in Paradise when he was dumped by Demi Burnett, who chose to continue a relationship with a woman she’d been dating in Los Angeles.

Following the episode, Wells Adams showed his support by campaigning for Peth to be the next Bachelor lead. (Peth was a contestant on JoJo Fletcher’s season of The Bachelorette and got engaged to Taylor Nolan after season 4 of BiP.)

“#derekforbachelor Appreciation video for my roommate on the @bacheloretteabc,” Paradise bartender Adams wrote alongside a photo montage of the two. “My bourbon drinking buddy. My bestie from the TV world and honestly the one of the best guys I’ve ever met. We don’t deserve @pethderek.”

And Wells’ fiancée Sarah Hyland also wants to see their friend hand out roses. She commented on the post: “DEREK FOR BACHELOR!”

And don’t forget Underwood, who also acknowledged Peth’s potential.

“I think it’s either going to be Peter or Derek,” he said.