Former Big Brother winner Xavier Prather revealed that due to some “very personal things,” he was close to not going on the CBS spinoff, The Challenge: USA.
The show consists of stars from Amazing Race, Big Brother, Love Island, and Survivor competing for their chance to win a share of $500,000.
Prather, who won Season 23 of Big Brother, went into that competition after his brother had recently passed away, and it became part of what motivated him to become the show’s first Black winner.
With The Challenge: USA, he already felt that things with the spinoff’s cast were going to be a problem, as he saw it included five of his BB castmates.
However, several tragedies also befell his family just before he was planning to go out to film the show in Argentina.
He opened up on a recent episode of the Reality Rundown show, hosted by Emily Longeretta and Mark Long, about what happened in his life that nearly prevented his appearance on CBS’ The Challenge spinoff.
Xavier speaks about tragedies before The Challenge: USA
While appearing on the Reality Rundown podcast, Xavier Prather said he “almost didn’t go on” The Challenge: USA because he was “dealing with some very personal things.” Xavier said his family gave him support, though.
“No one on The Challenge compound, with the exception of one person, actually knew. About two weeks before we were flying out for filming, one of my cousins was murdered. And then within a week from that, my grandmother’s body just shut down, and she passed away,” he shared.
The difficulty of those circumstances was rough on Xavier to the point he was unsure if it was the best time for him to go on The Challenge.
“My grandmother’s funeral was two days before I flew to Argentina. I was really torn up,” he said. “Two of my loved ones are just gone like that, and only one person knew everything. So I was really like, ‘Do I go? Do I stay?'” Xavier said during the podcast episode.
“This is the second time I’m dealing with death right before I go on a show. I was struggling mentally. I was not doing OK. Even on ‘The Challenge,’ you don’t see me a lot on the cameras. I was sneaking away,” he said of his mental state.
Xavier said he didn’t want his story on The Challenge
While it became known that Xavier competed after losing his brother on Big Brother 23, he said he didn’t want it known that he’d just lost his cousin and grandmother on The Challenge: USA.
“One thing that was on my mind as well was that I just had gone on Big Brother, where I was playing for my recently passed older brother and his nephew. I was like, I don’t really want every time I come on one of these shows my storyline to be about how I lost family, and that I’m playing for that,” he shared on Reality Rundown.
Xavier said he didn’t want to have a story involving a tragedy in his life every time he went on a show. In addition, he mentioned he’d trade winning money to have a family member back.
“I think you can use that, but at the same time, I’m like, if that’s the case, that means every time I come on one of these shows, something terrible has happened, and I don’t want that. I would give up all my time on Big Brother, any money I won, just to be able to see my brother again.”
Even though he had some hesitations, Xavier Prather became one of nine cast members from Big Brother seasons who appeared on The Challenge: USA, giving them some numbers. As mentioned above, viewers never heard anything about Xavier’s family tragedies in the episodes.
Instead, Xavier’s story on The Challenge: USA involved more of a narrative about how his former Big Brother castmates wanted revenge on him for what happened in BB 23, which became apparent starting with the premiere and into the fourth episode.
The Challenge: USA airs Wednesdays at 9/8c on CBS.