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OSU graduate competing to guest host on 'Live with Kelly'

Kelly Ripa and Michael Strahan

An Oklahoma State graduate is trying to fill the gap Michael Strahan’s teeth left behind.

Courtenay DeHoff, a 2012 agricultural communications graduate, has been competing for the opportunity to co-host an episode of “Live with Kelly.”

DeHoff is among 20 remaining candidates vying to sit beside Kelly Ripa on the nationally syndicated NBC show. She has navigated her way through the first two rounds of the co-host search competition.

But now, DeHoff finds herself relying on the help of voters to stay in the hunt.

Only 10 of the competitors still in the contest will advance to the next round where each one will be interviewed to make the top five. The last five contestants will appear live on air and compete through a series of video challenges, fighting for the last spot.

“My mom and I are big fans of the show, and so my mom told me about the contest,” DeHoff said. “At first, I just kind of blew it off, but eventually I thought, ‘You know, what do I have to lose?’

“So, I submitted a video and just kept going, but I got word that I made the top 40, and now here we are.”

DeHoff, a native of Tonganoxie, Kansas, grew up competing in rodeo events, and while at OSU, earned a spot on the rodeo team. It’s that experience that DeHoff said sets her apart from the other competitors.

“My video featured my rural upbringing and my time around horses — all of the things that make me unique,” DeHoff said. “And New York must have liked it because they made me a top 20 finalist.”

DeHoff said it was her time at OSU, though, that has given her this chance. As an agricultural communications major, she sought out internships while studying and eventually made her way onto the staff at Oklahoma Horizon, a news program produced in Stillwater.

DeHoff immediately fell in love with the field, and the passion she gained for journalism and TV news in Stillwater has carried her to the doorstep of a rare opportunity.

“I think this could open every single door that could ever be opened,” DeHoff said. “Something like this is what people in my industry strive for. This is always the goal.”

DeHoff said even if she doesn’t ultimately win the grand prize and earn a co-hosting seat, the experience will be worth it. She said she’s hoping for first place, but top five would be more than enough.

“Really I think once you make it to New York, you’ve already won,” DeHoff said. “Honestly, I think it would just be fun to hang out with Kelly Ripa for a day.”

With only a few more obstacles to climb, DeHoff is hopeful she can gain the support of her alma mater.

Viewers can watch DeHoff and the other competitors’ submission videos and vote their favorite candidate into the next round on the “Live with Kelly” Facebook page.

“I’d take all of the help I can get,” DeHoff said. “I’d love for my alma mater to get behind because that’s where it really all began for me.”