‘Big Brother’ Winner Dan Gheesling on Why He’s Still ‘Rooting’ for Memphis Garrett Amid Criticism

Big Brother 22 returning houseguest Memphis Garrett made it to the final two on his original season over 10 years ago but lost in a unanimous vote to Dan Gheesling. Many fans have criticized Memphis’ behavior during BB22, and he’s dropped to the bottom of favorite houseguests polls. Dan didn’t return to All-Stars as expected, but he is still keeping up with the season. After Memphis’ behavior made headlines, the season 10 winner released a statement explaining why he’s still “rooting” for his longtime friend.

Second place contestant Memphis Garrett,  Dan Gheesling, the winner of the Big Brother Season 10 Grand Finale and host Julie Chen
Second place contestant Memphis Garrett, Dan Gheesling, the winner of the “Big Brother Season 10 Grand Finale” and host Julie Chen | Frederick M. Brown

Dan Gheesling and Memphis Garrett worked together on ‘Big Brother 10’

In 2008, Dan Gheesling and Memphis Garrett made their Big Brother debut on season 10. During the fourth week of the competition, Jessie “Mr. Pec-Tacular” Godderz and Memphis ended up on the block.

Viewers also voted Dan as America’s Player for that week and wanted him to vote Jessie out of the house. Therefore, he convinced Keesha Smith, Libra Thompson, and Remy Martin to help flip with him, saving Memphis.

RELATED: Why Memphis Garrett Reportedly Got More Money Added to His Runner-Up Prize From ‘Big Brother 10’

Afterward, Dan and Memphis made a final two pact named The Renegades. They successfully hid their alliance by nominating each other and made it to the end together.

The jury members saw Dan as the better player and unanimously awarded him the win.

Memphis Garrett stirred up controversy in ‘Big Brother 22’

The runner-up largely remained out of the spotlight before returning for the second All-Stars season. While pretending to be a “lone wolf,” he quickly set up a majority alliance consisting of his final two partner Cody Calafiore, Nicole Franzel, Tyler Crispen, Dani Donato Briones, and Christmas Abbott.

The BB10 runner-up then went on to win the second HOH competition, and his alliance has been in power for the entire season so far. However, his behavior has rubbed many viewers the wrong way.

RELATED: ‘Big Brother 22’: Nicole Franzel Loses Olay Skin Sponsorship for Participating in the Mocking of Ian Terry

For example, he “mocked” autistic houseguest Ian Terry and called him the “red rum” of the season, referencing the horror film The Shining. A few houseguests, including Nicole, laughed at what he said, resulting in her losing Instagram and podcast sponsorships.

He also attempted to intimidate David Alexander when the returning player refused to admit he played the Disruptor Power on himself. Additionally, the season 10 runner-up referred to Louisiana natives as “coona*s,” a term describing Cajuns that several Live Feed viewers found offensive.

Dan Gheesling stands up for Memphis Garrett amid criticism

After Memphis making fun of Ian’s rocking became headline news, Dan took to Twitter to defend his longtime friend. He wrote, “I think it’s important to strive for kindness & empathy, but in no way am I perfect. Memphis is my friend of 10+ years.”

The season 10 winner continued, “I know him to be a stand-up guy & great dad. I’ll keep rooting for him because if people have to be perfect to deserve friendship, no one would have any friends.”

RELATED: ‘Survivor 40’: Nick Wilson’s ‘High Level Social Play’ Impresses ‘Big Brother’ Legend Dan Gheesling

Many viewers didn’t like his response and felt he should’ve called his Memphis out for his behavior. Dan replied to a few followers and stated he doesn’t “write people off,” even if he disagrees with their actions.

He also explained that he addresses any “issues” he has with friends privately. Big Brother 22: All-Stars airs Sundays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays at 8 p.m. EST on CBS.

Follow Tamara Grant on Twitter.