Jay Byars the 25-year old model from South Carolina with the ever so sexy drawl just couldn’t resist those chicken wings and beer during his final immunity challenge. Tempted by Jeff Probst to throw in the towel for immunity, he bit. He bit right into those chicken wings because he mistakenly thought he would be safe at tribal council. Never underestimate the power of the all girl alliance.
Jay enjoyed his time on Survivor, made lasting friendships and would give his left arm to do it again.
Jay: Yes, I am a fan however I actually applied to be on the Amazing Race first! I got a call and they asked me if I would consider applying for Survivor, so here I am.
The Yak: Jay as a model I’m sure you are used to seeing pictures of yourself everywhere but how did you feel about being in People magazine labeled a “hottie?”
Jay: (Laughs) Um, I mean if that’s what people think of me then more power to them. I was pretty stoked to see a full page of me in People magazine for sure.
The Yak: Looking back how come you trusted Kat so much after the girls voted out Mike?
Jay: It wasn’t that I trusted her so much it was that I didn’t trust her and I wanted to keep her close. Sabrina, Kim and Chelsea I trusted more.
The Yak: Colton told us that from Day one you and he had a strong alliance is that true?
Jay: That was true. You know walking away from the truck he was really paranoid on day one and afraid he’d be the first guy voted off. I told him, “Look man I’ve got your back, I’ll protect you.” Once I saw him working those girls I let him put my name in the mix and he made me look good. I was looking forward to that merge and him being there and us having a shoe-in with the girls.
The Yak: How do you think things would have turned out for you if Colton were still in the game?
Jay: That was something that I obviously wished would have been different. My thing with Colton was, I wish he had been there. Early on I didn’t interact much with the girls because I knew Colton was. He was kind of putting my name in the mix. I was going to let him be the one to bring the girls and us together.
The Yak: How do you think you should have played things with Kim and Chelsea?
Jay: Um, my biggest, dumbest move was stepping down because I thought I was safe. I knew the girls were going to come after me but I didn’t think it was that night, I thought it was going to be the next time. I just should have stayed focused on that vote and won my immunity.
The Yak: Why did you step off for the food when you discussed with Troy that you both would not step down for food temptations?
Jay: When I saw that Troy didn’t win and I figured he’d be the first to go. I truly figured it would be 2 or 3 days from then. I figured I would be less of a target if I stepped down. I was being played and I was wrong.
The Yak: Were the chicken wings at least good?
Jay: (laughs) They were good man, you know I had a side of ranch dressing to dip them in, the beer was ice cold and I had a nice full stomach for my exit.
The Yak: Do you think it was you telling Kim that Troy had the immunity idol that switched the vote to you or do you think it was you all along?
Jay: I think once the news of Troy’s idol got thrown around more at tribal I think that’s when the votes got swung back to me. Had I known about his idol earlier, maybe there could have been some work with me, him, Tarzan and Christine to get on the same page but it was just too little, too late at that time.
The Yak: In the beginning of the episode you were really paranoid about the girl’s alliance. Why did you go from being so paranoid to being so confident?
Jay: I was looking for someone to pair up and trust so I stayed with my Salani group. I thought, I might be paranoid but this is the game plan. I’m going to stick with this group and see what happens.
The Yak: Any thought to go with Troy’s plan to throw some votes Kim’s way?
Jay: Looking back I wish we had talked earlier. Had I known that he had the idol earlier, it was revealed last second. Getting everyone on the same page, there wasn’t time, especially when you have Tarzan in the mix, obviously he voted for me. I think it was too little, too late.
The Yak: What were your thoughts on Chelsea in the game:
Jay: In the game I thought she was a super cool chick, laid back, quiet and kind of reserved. I thought she had a good head on her shoulders and knew she’d be very competitive. I was looking forward to working with her longer you know. Once we found out we were from the same state and area we kind of had a little bond there and I think that’s why it did reflect in her confessionals that she did hate to see me go. She did the right thing though.
The Yak: We hear a lot of goofy things coming out of Kat’s mouth. Was she like that truly or are they just amping up the amount of craziness that comes out of Kat’s mouth?
Jay: Um…… I would say that it’s pretty accurate (laughs). I had her stereotyped as the ditzy blonde and she’s super fun and fun to be around. She’s a smart girl but she definitely has her blonde moments.
The Yak: Are you looking forward to the reunion?
Jay: Oh yeah I am super excited to be back together with everyone again. You know you come off of there and you get back to reality, you still keep up with these people and see how it’s going to be in the real world.
The Yak: Do you think there’s any friendships that you will continue on with the rest of your life?
Jay: Oh yeah for sure. There are about 3 people that I’m in contact with all the time and about 5 or 6 that I try my best to keep up with. Definitely some strong bonds were made.
The Yak: What’s next for you?
Jay: I’m headed back to NY for the finale and staying there for a bit for work with Major Models. In June I’m headed back to LA for work. I’m going to try and enjoy my summer a little bit and then I’m off to Europe in the fall for work. Back to the normal grind for me.
Well Jay, thank you for talking with us here at the Yak and good luck with that normal grind, sounds grueling!
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