When longtime Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek, 80, passed away after a long battle with cancer on November 8, 2020, fans of the game show were devastated. The biggest question for viewers and contestants, of course, was who would fill Trebek’s shoes as the new host.
Following months of guest hosts including Reading Rainbow host LeVar Burton, Big Bang Theory star Mayim Bialik, and former champions like Ken Jennings and Buzzy Cohen, Bialik landed the job following controversy involving former Jeopardy! producer Mike Richardson.
Bialik has faced her own minor controversies, including fans’ frustration at her use of the term “Single Jeopardy” to describe the first round of the show — “Double Jeopardy” has long been the name of the second round — and requests from producers to “tone it down” when dealing with contestants.
Bialik’s tenure on the long-running game show has already given rise to some popular champions, including Amy Schneider, who won 40 games, and recent champion, Mattea Roach, who broke the win streak record for a Canadian contestant.
Now, amid recent confirmation that Bialik and fan-favorite Ken Jennings will share hosting duties for the foreseeable future, some popular champions have reunited for a “secret” Jeopardy tournament — for a good cause!
The multi-round, trivia-teeming weekend, which was not recorded, began with a hoard of “gameshow hopefuls who wanted a shot at Jeopardy! or The Chase,” Kelli shared.
16 attendees were “selected based on scoring of the pre-test they took” and “took on each other,” and if they won that, “then they took on the ‘titans.'”
The two audience members who won then played against the champs, including Season 38’s 40-game winner Amy Schneider and 38-game winner Matt Amodio – who are about to compete in fall’s winner’s tournament – as well as James [Holzhauer], Brad Rutter, and more.
The five-versus-five final portion was hosted by the beloved alum Buzzy Cohen and it was won by alum Jason Zuffranieri.
Although Jennings wasn’t present, Holzhauer made sure he was still included in the festivities by throwing a little shade his good friend’s way. The professional sports bettor said the “Jeopardy GOATs” are “Brad Rutter and himself ‘and a guy who’s not here [Jennings] but sent a video.'”
In the previously mentioned article, Project 150 Executive Director Kelli Kristo is quoted as saying her charity organization “helps homeless, displaced, and disadvantaged students here in Nevada,” and that her “secret” Jeopardy tourney raised $10,000 USD.
Did you know about this under-the-radar Las Vegas Jeopardy affair?