Livvy Rizzing Up Baby Gronk, Explained | Defector (2024)

Did you hear the news? Livvy rizzed up Baby Gronk!!! Despite being a 40-year-old man, I am uniquely in tune with the younger generation because I go to the mall. I am more than happy to explain this all to you.

OK, I don’t really know if I need to know any of this.

You do. Livvy rizzed up Baby Gronk! You aren’t the least bit curious about that?

Fine. You can explain it to me. You have to really explain it all, though. Who is Livvy?

Livvy is Olivia Dunne, a 20-year-old gymnast for LSU. She has 7.5M followers on Tik Tok and 4.1M on Instagram. She has been the top-earning female athlete via NIL deals. On the nebulous “NIL valuation” list she is No. 2 overall behind Bronny James, LeBron’s son, who recently signed with USC. She was out with an injury for much of the recent season and competed only in the uneven bars. She’s young and pretty, and so inspires headlines like this any time she posts on social media.

Livvy Rizzing Up Baby Gronk, Explained | Defector (1)

Oh yeah, I know who Livvy is! I read about her on Defector!

Naturally. This is how most people learn about her.

Now who is Baby Gronk?

Baby Gronk is Madden San Miguel, an “8 year old football sensation” per his YouTube page. He’s actually 10 now, and he has 318K followers on Instagram.

As you can see, he has been a football sensation since he was at least 6. It’s possible he came out of the womb with a mouth guard in. You probably have another question here, which I’ll answer in advance: Who is Baby Gronk dad?

“Who is Baby Gronk dad”? Why did you phrase it like that?

So, I saw the following headline on a sh*tty SEO page: “Who is Baby Gronk Dad? How Old is Baby Gronk 2023? How Tall is Baby Gronk?” I’m just trying to get some of that sweet Google juice as well. Per that site, Baby Gronk is 4-foot-9.

More like Adolescent Gronk! But that all makes sense. So…Who is Baby Gronk Dad?

We recently learned all about him! Football Scoop’s Zach Barnett interviewed Jake San Miguel, who is Baby Gronk dad, last month. “We've done brand deals with Champs Sports, PSD underwear, we’ve worked with Michael Vick, we’ve worked with Wilson football, you name it we’ve done it,” Jake told him. “It’s only getting bigger. Everything’s monetized for him.” Also, Baby Gronk Dad was once a rapper.

I’m not listening to that. But I have another question: Isn’t someone else already “Baby Gronk”?

You’re correct! Michael Mayer, a tight end who played three years at Notre Dame, is also nicknamed “Baby Gronk.” He wore Adult Gronk’s No. 87 there. The Raiders drafted him with the 35th overall pick this year. It’s unclear if the two Babies Gronk know each other.

OK. I guess I get who these people are. What is “rizzed up” mean?

Not even a plugged-in mall-goer like myself knew this offhand. I had to look it up. Unfortunately I had to look it up on Airdroid, a website and app that sends parents notifications about new teen slang. “Rizzed up” was coined by livestreamer Kai Cenat. It’s short for having charisma, and is used to show you’re successfully flirting with someone.

Livvy was flirting with Baby Gronk?


Then why did you say that Livvy rizzed up Baby Gronk? That was the whole point of this blog!

Well, it all started yesterday when Twitter user @BenShh1, whose current display name is “co*ck sportello”, posted this tweet.

this video is making me feel schizophrenic

— co*ck sportello (@BenShh1) June 6, 2023

“Livvy” was eventually trending on Twitter, and users kept making jokes about how Livvy had rizzed up Baby Gronk. I try to stay out of the Twitter zeitgeist, and even I joined in! It is rare for me to comment on a trending topic, but sometimes the public just needs to know my thoughts.

So, uh, who is this guy in the video?

That’s TikTok user h00pify, aka Henry De Tolla. He’s a lacrosse player for UMass-Lowell, and according to his team bio his favorite TV shows are Entourage, The Challenge, and Psych. He played in seven games and started twice this year.

UMass-Lowell lax any good?

The River Hawks went 0-13 this year.

Drag. So what actually happened to make this guy say “Livvy rizzed up Baby Gronk”?

Livvy actually rizzed up Baby Gronk—

You said that didn’t happen!

Thanks for correcting. Livvy actually just met Baby Gronk, back in March, which is when De Tolla also made his video. It is unclear why this news broke into the wider world in early June. Baby Gronk—or, presumably, Baby Gronk Dad—posted a video of the meeting that feels pretty staged.

“Hey, are you that kid from the Internet?” Dunne asks. “Yeah, I’m Baby Gronk,” Baby Gronk replies in a grim mumble that makes me feel much worse about writing this post about these children than I did before I started typing this sentence. After that awkward opening line, Dunne actually gets into a flow and does not seem as scripted. Baby Gronk still mumbles a bit, though. He's 10.

I notice the title of that video is “LIVVY DUNNE KNOWS I GOT RIZZ.” So basically it was Baby Gronk, or possibly Baby Gronk Dad, who spread the rumor that Livvy rizzed up Baby Gronk?

It sure seems like it! However, it’s tough to be too hard on him. For one, he’s a child. Also, Dunne seems really likable. College gymnastics is full of young, pretty people, but only one of them has 7.5 million followers. If I can use an oldhead term here, Olivia Dunne has a lot of charisma. It’s understandable Baby Gronk thought he was being rizzed up.

OK. So the guy who made the video, this lacrosse player. Is he serious?

Ah, no. I was forged in the fires of 1990s internet irony, and as such I like to think I have a good eye for it when I see it. But it’s not hard for anyone to check out De Tolla’s TikTok page and see that he’s joking. This is not even the first time he has made a silly video about 10-year-old Baby Gronk leading a college team to a national championship!

He makes silly videos with his mom. He recently said an energy drink brand saved Arsenal’s season. He wondered whether Quavo could’ve been the best quarterback in the NFL. He said Baby Gronk is going to be the best NFL player of all time. He is doing a Tony Zaret-style bit. He is kidding around.

OK, I believe you. I kind of want to know more now. Has this guy done any more good Baby Gronk videos?

Oh absolutely. He made this one about Baby Diggs challenging Baby Gronk to a 1v1.

I don't know how that works in football, but I’m sure these baby versions of NFL players know more than I do about the sport.

I know how a 1v1 in football works, but I’m not going to tell you. But I will consider it if you explain who the “Drip King” is. I have explored h00pify’s page and see him referenced in several videos.

Ah, yes. The Drip King is Caleb Hammett, a lacrosse player for regular-ol’ UMass. (Before you ask, the Minutemen went 8-6 this year.) De Tolla has made several videos about him.

The Drip King is listed as talent on the website of Limitless NIL. De Tolla lists Limitless in his bio, so perhaps this is all kayfabe.

I don’t really know what a 1v1 in football is. I’m sorry. I just wanted to know who the Drip King is.

That’s OK. I would’ve told you who the Drip King is, anyway. Any other questions?

What is Limitless NIL?

It’s the NIL company founded by Sean Clifford, the former Penn State quarterback who was drafted by the Packers in the fifth round this year.

Is his nickname “Baby Gronk,” too?


OK. I think that’s all. I wasn’t really interested in all of this, but I now know a lot of pointless information! Did you try to contact De Tolla?

Of course! I am a professional journalist, and I wanted to get the scoop about his TikToks.

Did he reply?

Do you think I would’ve conducted this interview with myself if he had?

Livvy Rizzing Up Baby Gronk, Explained | Defector (2024)


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