June 19, 2014 at 4:01 pm

Ubly's Nicole Franzel cast in latest 'Big Brother'

Nicole Franzel, 21, of Ubly, Mich., will join the cast of CBS' 'Big Brother' this season. (CBS)

Nicole Franzel is putting the small town of Ubly, Michigan — in the thumb, population 800 and some change — on the map by joining the cast of this summer’s “Big Brother.”

The CBS reality competition will kick off its 16th cycle on Wednesday, and on Thursday Franzel was revealed as one of the season’s 16 contestants. The recent nursing school graduate joins a minister, a police officer, pop singer Ariana Grande’s brother and a host of others inside CBS’ “Big Brother” house, where she’ll be cut off from the outside world and her every move will be filmed in a summer-long competition to win a $500,000 grand prize.

Franzel, 21, is one of the youngest members of the cast. The self-described “superfan” of the show tells bigbrothernetwork.com she plans to dominate competitions inside the house and doesn’t plan on sabotaging any of the contests.

Last season’s “Big Brother” cast landed in hot water multiple times due to the houseguests’ racist and homophobic comments. Franzel said she knows her parents will be watching the live feeds on the show’s website, and she plans to “do everything I can to not embarrass them.”

Among Michigan-bred “Big Brother” contestants, Franzel has some pretty big shoes to fill. Dearborn’s Dan Gheesling, who won “Big Brother 10” and was the runner-up on “Big Brother 14,” is widely considered to be one of the two best players in “Big Brother” history.

Talking to bigbrothernetwork.com, Franzel says she’s a fan of Gheesling and would align with him if she could form an alliance with any past player.

Franzel tells Bite Size TV’s “Reality Relapse” that she’s a country music fan who doesn’t watch anything on TV besides “Big Brother” and was “trying to find a job” when on a whim she applied for the show. She’s single and is “open” to the possibility of a showmance — the term used for an in-house romance — if one presents itself.

She told bigbrothernetwork.com she hopes her “quirkiness” and dash of country attitude aids her well in the house.

“I’m just a small town girl with a big dream,” she said.

'Big Brother 16'

8-9 p.m. Wednesday

9-10 p.m. Thursday

CBS

agraham@detroitnews.com
twitter.com/grahamorama