Hisam Goueli talks about his 'devastating' Big Brother betrayal

Hisam Goueli thought he was running the game. And then he was out of it. Hisam came hot out of the gate on season 25 of Big Brother, winning three straight competitions, including a Head of Household. But his bossy attitude rubbed everyone — including his own alliance — the wrong way. And the people he was closest to then engineered his ouster.

Hisam was backdoored and blindsided by fellow Professor Felicia Cannon, and his last-ditch apology tour and promise to be loyal to the end to anyone who voted to save him fell short. Way short, as it turns out, as he was the third straight unanimous vote out of the house.

How does Hisam feel about the betrayal? Does he accept his share of the blame? And does he regret winning all those competitions? We asked the 45-year-old geriatric physician all that and more when we spoke to the ousted contestant the morning after his eviction. You can watch the interview above or read it below.

Hisam Goueli on 'Big Brother' season 25
Hisam Goueli on 'Big Brother' season 25

CBS Hisam Goueli on 'Big Brother' season 25

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: How much did it hurt when you first found out that the move to get you out was engineered by your own alliance?

HISAM GOUELI: Yeah, that's devastating news to find out, right? You have to trust people in this game, and it's hard for that trust to be violated.

You've only been out of the house for around 12 hours at this point, so I don't even know what you know yet, but were you aware that there was a sub-alliance within the Professors called the Bye Bye Bitches?

I was aware that there were women working together. I was aware that Izzy, Cirie, Felicia, and Bowie probably were all together. That was pretty clear.

So what stung more: When you first realized they turned on you, or when you realized it was your own words and actions that had caused that?

I think the truth of the matter is they were looking for a reason to evict me. I think that they basically found that in things that I said, and used that as a catalyst to move forward in order to justify the action. You have to have enough evidence to sway people. And I think that people use that to do so.

Hisam Goueli on 'Big Brother' season 25
Hisam Goueli on 'Big Brother' season 25

Sonja Flemming/CBS Hisam Goueli on 'Big Brother' season 25

One thing we heard from your alliance is that they thought you were too bossy and they felt like you were giving orders more than working collaboratively. Do you agree with that?

I think it's a tough position, right? As the Head of Household, I knew that Reilly was coming after me. I knew that she had planned on evicting me and Izzy. I didn't really think that there was much to talk about because it seemed like that was the obvious plan. So I wasn't necessarily expecting a ton of collaboration on that and was a little bit surprised, primarily because I thought the plan for all of us in order to keep our games safe was to go after Reilly.

Do you think the Veto speech when you talked about everyone voting Reilly out was a bit too much?

Of course, it was too much! And I apologized to her immediately afterward. I also did a lot of damage control afterward. I absolutely believe I went too far. And for that, I apologized to Reilly. It wasn't intended to be so, but it obviously rubbed people the wrong way. I can see why it rubbed people the wrong way. And I'm sorry about it. And it's ultimately what cost me the game.

Was there ever a point after you apologized and made your pitch to stay where you thought maybe you had the votes to stay?

Yeah, after I was in the room with Felicia, Cirie, and Izzy and they talked about putting together a different group to go to the end, that gave me hope. And the truth of the matter is that I then watched the three of them work the house. I watched them move in and out of rooms with people, and it appeared that they were talking to the people they thought that they could naturally align with. So yeah, there was a lot of hope that potentially the house would flip, and I thought it would be a wonderful redemption story.

Hisam Goueli on 'Big Brother' season 25
Hisam Goueli on 'Big Brother' season 25

CBS Hisam Goueli on 'Big Brother' season 25

We heard you say it in your Diary Room interviews, so I'm assuming it was genuine, but would you have stuck by them had you stayed? Would you have been fiercely loyal to them had they kept you, or was that just what you were telling them to get them to keep you?

I would've been fiercely loyal. I believe in letting bygones be bygones. I believe that people make mistakes. I believe that we can learn from our mistakes and the only way to heal is to forgive.

Let's just talk about the game move of getting you out. On one hand, your alliance could be thinking, "This guy's a big competitor. We have to take him out at some point and maybe we don't like the way he's running the alliance." On the other hand, it also could be "He's on our side and we're safe if he keeps winning HOH." So do you think it was a smart move to take you out?

I'm going to say I think that's a smart move to take me out. I'm not sure the timing was right. If I were to take me out, I think that there are other places I would be vulnerable and that I could have been a huge asset in the beginning part prior to jury. I think where I would be most vulnerable is after I won another HOH or during a double eviction. And that would make more sense to me. When you're sort of deeper in the game, I'm a huge target in the house, which shields you from actually being put up or going home. And so I was just a little bit surprised that it happened so early, to be honest.

We saw you say you didn't want to be in this last Veto competition and that you wanted to lay back because you had already been racking up all these competition wins. When did the bell start going off that maybe this wasn't the best course of action to win all those challenges?

The minute I won the first Veto. The truth of the matter is that I didn't want to win that HOH competition. And I think that that's pretty clear. I knew I was safe with Jared, so I had nothing to worry about that week. And Jared just chooses the wrong door. And then, unfortunately, I became the next HOH. And with that, then the only obvious target was Reilly. And so I sent my sights there, and that's what happened.

Hisam Goueli and Reilly Smedley on 'Big Brother' season 25
Hisam Goueli and Reilly Smedley on 'Big Brother' season 25

CBS Hisam Goueli and Reilly Smedley on 'Big Brother' season 25

Who's playing the best game in the house?

I think, probably at this moment, Cory is. I think that he's naturally aligned with both sides of the house. He's playing sort of in the middle. I think that just looking at him, he is unassuming. And so I think that Cory is safely navigating both sides right now.

How are you doing right now? It's only about 12 hours since you got out. I know what a whirlwind it is being in the house, and I know the emotional complexities of being voted out of the game, and then — on another level —also adjusting to just physically being out of the house. So how are you doing right now 12 hours after the fact?

I would say I'm doing as well as I can be doing. This is a new experience for me. It's a new adventure. I'm ready to move on to the next thing in my life. I'm ready to get back to my job. I'm ready to go back to working with people. I'm ready to go back to performing. I'm ready to see my dog. I'm ready to see my family and friends. There's a lot that I'm looking forward to.

What I will say is that although I didn't win, and although I was evicted sooner than I had hoped, the moral of the story is that there's still lots of optimism. I'm an optimistic person, and I'm hopeful that something good will come out of this experience. And I'm hopeful about the things that are coming and the things that I will get to do now that I'm not in the house.

Hisam Goueli on 'Big Brother' season 25
Hisam Goueli on 'Big Brother' season 25

Sonja Flemming/CBS Hisam Goueli on 'Big Brother' season 25

You were a wildly entertaining player to watch and that's what you want to see if you're watching the show.

I'm a bold person. I said that from the very beginning. I'm bold and I can be an intense person. I definitely had a point of view and I definitely have a point of view.

That's what we as viewers like to see, and that's what producers like to see. So if they ask you to come back in the house for another season, are you going to do it?

Here's what I would say: I would consider it. It's a tough experience. It's a hard game. There's a lot of sacrifice. It will depend upon where I am in my life. I've had this wonderful experience, to be honest with you. And the truth of the matter is, could there be a place where I would do it again? Yeah, of course. I'm up for a new adventure at all times. But that's also at the expense of what other adventures are out there. And so I will choose the best adventure. Let's say that.

Finally, in her goodbye message to you, Blue said you were honest and she said that you were a liar. So which is it: Are you honest or are you a liar?

I'm an honest person. The truth of the matter is that I did keep all of the promises that I set to keep. I didn't know how I would manage moving into mid-game, but I did actually set out to do the thing that I said. I was bold, I was honest, I was forthright, I was loyal. All of those things were true.

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