Ken Jennings Calls ‘Jeopardy!’ a ‘Competition First and Showbiz Second’

by Quentin Blount

Okay, Outsiders. So, are we considering Jeopardy! a sport now? Evidently, gameshow legend Ken Jennings has been doing that all along.

Jeopardy! has been one of the most popular game shows for decades at this point. They have a strong recipe for success and they have never really needed to make many changes to the show. But they did just recently reveal something very interesting — they are going to start releasing box score information for the fans just like your favorite sports team would.

You better believe that this news makes an analytical guy like Ken Jennings smile in his sleep. He took to social media to share his thoughts after he heard the news.

“Big announcement from @Jeopardy: daily box scores and an annual ‘postseason,'” Jennings tweeted.

According to the legend himself, Jeopardy! is a competition first.

“I noticed many years ago that sportswriters were the best interviewers about Jeopardy!” he said. “They treated it (correctly!) as a competition first and showbiz second.”

“And the box scores include buzzer stats!” Jennings wrote in a second tweet. “For the first time, fans will be able to dig into the interplay of knowledge and timing that defines the game. Looking forward to the Ph.D. dissertations on Jeopardy! analytics.”

‘Jeopardy!’ Fans Respond to Ken Jennings on Twitter

Ken Jennings has nearly half a million followers on Twitter alone. So, when he tweeted about the recent Jeopardy! box score announcement, fans of the show were quick to chime in.

“I’m happy to see this,” one fan replied. “I’ve been really interested in all the stats that have been posted recently.”

“Are we going to get advanced metrics, too?” another fan asked. “Like in sports. Deeper dives into data, readily available, would be so interesting.”

“This rocks but what would rock more is getting daily Jeopardy episodes on a major streaming service,” a third person replied. “Not just tournaments. Not just collections of episodes. The same syndicated episode that gets shown every day on a stream the same way we all watch every other TV show now.”

The show’s executive producer, Michael Davies, confirmed the box score announcement in a recent statement. The box score will have loads of awesome statistics and information just like an MLB box score would. One of those new stats is one that fans will be able to see for the first time — the “lock-in” or “buzzer” data. The show has always collected the data for every episode but this is the first time it’s being made available to the public.

“So now for the first time, you will actually get proof of what, anecdotally, non-winning ‘Jeopardy!’ contestants have shared for years: they couldn’t get in on the buzzer! It is such a vital element of the game, and our champions dominate in that aspect.”