‘Big Brother’ 15 winner Andy Herren: ‘This is the best season in YEARS’ (Exclusive Q&A)

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Where else to go to for advice on predicting the current season of "Big Brother" than a previous winner? This week I had the opportunity to ask Season 15 champ Andy Herren about the current cast, who he thinks is playing a great game and who he's predicting to be the biggest targets heading into the next week. After reading our Q&A below, be sure to make your predictions for the rest of Week 6 and you could win our prize of a $100 Amazon gift certificate. It's fun and easy, so start now by scrolling down and predicting who'll be evicted next.

Who will win 'Big Brother'? See exclusive predictions

Hi Andy. Thank you so much for chatting with us about "Big Brother"! As a past winner, what is your general reaction to how this season is unfolding?

This is the best "Big Brother" season in YEARS. Maybe since "Big Brother" 10. "Big Brother" 15 had vote-with-the-house syndrome (which I am very strongly to blame for). "Big Brother" 16 was the worst season in the show's history in terms of entertainment value and strong players. Derrick steamrolled through that house because very few others were there to actually play, and it was nearly excruciating to watch. This season has been GLORIOUS. Power shifts galore, lines drawn in the sand, betrayals, genuinely likable people, no clear-cut winner. Anyone who says this season sucks is a fool.

I like that you diagnosed your season with a "vote-with-the-house syndrome" because it's one of my biggest complaints about the structure of "Big Brother" — recent casts, and I include the current cast in this, seem to rely on or even expect this strategy. Why would we consider "voting with the house" a syndrome?

Voting with the house is a syndrome because nobody wants to be seen as a potential target. Let's say your biggest ally is on the block, but the majority of the other houseguests want to evict said ally. It is smart to vote with them (the house) because if you don't and one of them wins the next HOH, they can use your rogue vote as reasoning to nominate/evict you. It is frustrating, but it is also a smart way to play if you sense no chance of being able to save your ally. The problem with this is that it is BORING for viewers. Smart strategy on "Big Brother" in general is boring for viewers.

Who are the best players so far this season?

John McGuire — he's smarter than everyone is giving him credit for. Playing dumb and laying low (not to mention his ability to remain calm under stress) are CRUCIAL in the early stages of the game. I'm intrigued to see how he plays in the mid-game. Shelli Poole and Vanessa Rousso — say what you will, but they've been getting what they want each week. Yes, it is ultimately biting them in the ass this week, but it was bound to happen. I'm hoping Shelli stays and they have to turn against one another at some point, because I think Vanessa will emerge victorious.

And the worst players?

Austin Matelson — he's choosing love over money. And the girl he loves doesn't even love him back. He's been such a tremendous disappointment. James Huling — yes, he made a phenomenally entertaining move this week, but he's SCREWED if anyone but Meg Maley or Jackie Ibarra wins HOH next week. I like him and I want him to stick around, but I doubt he will.

Which player would you hate to have on your jury if you were in the final two?

Honestly, I wouldn't hate to have any of them in the jury if I made the final two. As I have demonstrated in the past, my ability to win people over is one of my biggest strengths, and I feel like I could establish good enough personal bonds with all of these people to secure a win.

Who in this cast seems to be playing with that same strength and could win over their jury? Who do you think will be the final two?

I think Johnny Mac or Meg could really win over the jury if they make it far. Everyone loves both of them. I really, truly think Johnny Mac has a good shot. Nobody is targeting him, and everyone thinks he is incompetent. He could get dragged there and pull off an upset victory with some good jury speeches. Vanessa seems possible as well, but I worry that her paranoia will get the best of her. Meg and the twins are also relatively socially competent, so I wouldn't be shocked if they made it all the way as well. Becky is ratting everyone out left and right, and if she can tow the line and play both sides, she could sneak her way to the end as well, but I worry that she may get sloppy.

Who has absolutely no shot of winning whatsoever?

I don't think James, Austin or Shelli have a shot of making it to the end. They've been big targets for too long.

If you were in this house, realistically speaking, who do you think you’d have legitimately aligned with?

I would for sure align with the couples — Liz/Austin and Shelli/Clay — but on a superficial level. I would feed their egos and make them think I was their little minion. With that being said, I would pull in someone like Meg, who I think I would genuinely get along with, and have her as a true ally. I could control the couples, and she could control her allies, with both of us keeping the other safe. Of course, our alliance would be a secret.

You have a great Twitter presence (@AndyHerren) in the BB arena and hear from a lot of fans. Who would you consider the frontrunner for fan favorite right now?

Johnny Mac is the frontrunner for fan favorite. Fans also loved Da'Vonne Rogers and Jason Roy, but by the time the fan vote rolls around, they will have been forgotten.

And on a personal level, who are you most excited to meet once they’re out of the house?

Meg! I think we will genuinely get along. And Becky, because I LOVE BECKY.

Okay, help our users with their predictions for next week. Give me a quick rundown — who are your picks for the next HOH and likely targets for eviction?

It is so hard to say who will win HOH next week because I have no idea what the competition will be! I'm praying it is not Vanessa, because I can't deal with another week of her paranoid quick-talking. I would love to see Becky, Steve, Johnny Mac, or Jackie win, because I think a lot of people view them as wild cards and it would be fun to see where they take it. Easy targets are Austin and the twins.

Thanks Andy!

'Big Brother' WTF moment: Should Shelli Poole be evicted for throwing HOH comp?

Who will go home Thursday night: Shelli or Clay? In our "Big Brother" predictions center, you get to answer the following questions spread out over two separate events.

Which houseguest will be evicted?

Who will win the HOH competition?

Who will win 'Big Brother'?

Making your predictions is fun and easy. Just log into your Gold Derby account, or you can register for a free account via Facebook, Twitter or Google.

After logging in, click on the "Predictions" button found at the top-right of every page. That will bring you to a list of every event currently being predicted at Gold Derby — everything from the Emmys and Television Critics Association Awards to "So You Think You Can Dance" and "Survivor."

Click on any box and then scroll down to start making your predictions. For each TV show, cast your votes on several different questions relating to the upcoming episode.

If you click on the "Big Brother" button, you'll see something like this:

To vote for who you think will be eliminated next, drag your chosen contestant over from the left to the right. For example, if you think Shelli will get the boot, make sure you put her in first place.

Every time someone logs their predictions, the racetrack odds of the contestants are automatically updated. If the majority of users think Shelli will go home, that means she'll have the best odds and will go to the front of the pack. Conversely, the contestants who don't receive many predictions have the worst odds and will go to the bottom of the pile.

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Remember that coming out on top doesn't just mean answering that week's questions correctly. You also have to use your three big bets (500 points and two of 200 points) strategically to score the most game points. If you bet on a longshot who pulls off an upset, you can really rack up the points, so don't take them for granted.

Average Gold Derby users just like YOU often turn out to be our smartest prognosticators, so it's important that you give us your predictions. You can continue to update and change your predictions throughout the week, just click "Save Predictions" when you've settled on your choice.

Get started by making your prediction as to which houseguest will be eliminated next. And be sure to sound off on the current season of "Big Brother" in Gold Derby's reality TV forum.

 

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