‘Jeopardy!’ Champ Amy Schneider Says Ken Jennings ‘Should Be the Host’

by Chris Haney
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After making her mark as Jeopardy!‘s second-winningest contestant ever, champion Amy Schneider is now giving her full endorsement to Ken Jennings as the new permanent host of the popular game show.

Ever since longtime host Alex Trebek passed away in November 2020 from cancer, the coveted hosting gig has been in limbo. For months following his death, Jeopardy! used a rotating cast of celebrity guest hosts to fill the void. After a long search for the show’s next full-time host, Mike Richards took over the podium. However, after only one week in the position, he was unceremoniously ousted from the job.

The game show then turned to actress Mayim Bialik and former champion Ken Jennings to co-host Jeopardy!. Jennings knows the ins and outs of the game better than anyone. His 74-game win streak from 2004 is still a record that stands today. Following Schneider’s recent exit from the show, which came to end at 40 consecutive victories, she gave Jennings the nod to continue on in the role.

“Ken Jennings should be the host,” Amy Schneider said. “I really can’t say enough about him. I didn’t necessarily think that before going into this because, yes, he was a great champion, but this is a different skill set. But you could see the work that he put into it, and I just thought he did a really great job. So as far as I’m concerned, that’s my endorsement.” 

Additionally, the contestant that dethroned Schneider, Rhone Talsma, shared similar thoughts. While speaking to Vulture recently, he gave Jennings his endorsement as well.

“If I’m able to endorse a host, I 100 percent endorse Ken Jennings,” Talsma agreed. “His knowledge of the game gives him so much credibility. … There’s nobody better suited for the job.” 

‘Jeopardy!’ Champ Reveals the ‘Most Meaningful’ Part of Her Experience

During her impressive run on Jeopardy!, champion Amy Schneider won $1,382,800 in winnings. She also has more wins and more cash earnings than any other woman in the game show’s history. It was an amazing run during her 40-game win streak. However, she values other aspects of her journey on the show even more.

Schneider is the first transgender woman to rank so highly on the show and qualify for the “Tournament of Champions.” She’s been a groundbreaking contestant for the LGBTQ community. The importance of Schneider’s time on Jeopardy! is not lost on her, and she opened up about exactly that to Entertainment Weekly just last week.

“It’s definitely the most meaningful, rewarding experience out of all of it,” Schneider shared with Entertainment Weekly. “I knew that I was taking on some kind of burden, if you will, of representation by being on the show, especially once I started winning. Just being on the show has been done before, but I was the first trans person to be so successful.”

“I just wanted to be myself first and foremost, and beyond that, show everybody that trans people are just people,” she added. “We’re randomly distributed in the population, and we’re just like anybody else. [I wanted to] just show people a trans person being successful in this very mainstream field.”

Outsider.com