James Droz Merch

‘What happened?’ How Bartlesville grad James Droz became a TikTok star

Bartlesville … what happened?

The most happening heartbeat right in town right now belongs to a 2022 Bartlesville High graduate who has catapulted into national prominence without going beyond his computer screen.

He’s the reason why Bartlesville’s most popular number — after ’66’ (as in the Phillips 66 company) — is ’77.’

To put it in the vernacular, Bartlesville’s James Droz is blowing up on social media.

He is approaching 500,000 followers and 10 million likes on the TikTok platform, people tuning in to watch Droz’s videos about a wide array of observations on popular culture — especially athletics.

It’s in the realm of sports that Droz — a special needs student with an amazing awareness and uncanny intuition about social undercurrents — has plugged into the consciousness of a massive and growing following.

Earlier this week, Droz’s roll call of devotees stood at 435,000 followers and 9.3 million likes. But, that number has been inflating at an exponential rate.

His utterance “What happened?” is becoming the catchphrase of the year in sports jargon from the high school to the pro-level crowd.

A typical Droz video begins with him calling out somebody or something by name, such as “USC, what happened?” after watching their last game.

In an offering a few days ago, he called out an NFL team and received a rash of responses from both sides.

“Broncos,” he started his commentary. “What happened? How did you lose to the Seahawks … the regular season?”

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