Before his freshman year at Princeton, Jacob Kosior ’10 participated in Outdoor Action, the University’s outdoor education program that sends groups of students and student guides on weeklong hiking trips. For most, it’s a bonding experience that helps ease the transition to college. For Kosior, it also turned out to be good preparation for reality TV.
Kosior recently spent a month competing on the new CW show Capture, a Hunger Games-style survival challenge in which 12 pairs of twenty-somethings take turns in the roles of the hunters and the hunted, vying for a $250,000 grand prize.
The show is not about survival in the life-or-death sense, Kosior said, but it does require coping with a range of obstacles, including staying physically and mentally sharp while living with no bed and limited food. Kosior, who stands 6-feet, 4-inches and normally weighs about 220 pounds, received a paltry ration of 600 to 700 calories per day. He said that he routinely woke up wondering, “What am I doing?” But once the day’s competition began, he settled back into a competitive rhythm.
Kosior, a graduate student in urban planning and policy at the University of Illinois, Chicago, heard about casting for the show from a friend, Rob Anderson, who became his teammate on the show. The timing of the one-month commitment was perfect: Kosior finished spring classes April 30 and was on a plane to the filming location the following day. He returned to Chicago in time to begin his summer internship.
At Princeton, Kosior had some experience as a performer, dancing with BodyHype and acting in Triangle Club shows, but being on camera all day, every day isn’t easy, he said, especially when you cannot shower or shave. “I’m very particular about my hair,” he joked. Teaming up with Anderson was helpful, he added, because both had a lighthearted attitude about the competition.
Capture debuts July 30 at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT on CW affiliates. Kosior said he had hoped to lay low for the premiere, but he’s agreed to watch with a small group of friends. He cannot say how long he lasted in the competition, but he did tell PAW that he “lost a substantial amount of weight” and finished with “longer, fuller facial hair.”