‘Jeopardy!’ Tournament of Champions Trailer Drops Promising Intense Competition

by John Jamison

From May 17-28, the best “Jeopardy!” players in the world will go toe-to-toe in the Tournament of Champions. The sheer amount of knowledge spread between the 15 contestants is staggering, and the competition promises to be heated.

“Jeopardy!” recently uploaded a trailer to their YouTube channel, spreading excitement for the upcoming competition.

In the video, the contestants share their thoughts on how they’re feeling about the environment and the stiff competition they face. Everyone in the tournament knows what it takes to win on “Jeopardy!” Some have pretty impressive runs under their belts. Jason Zuffranieri, for example, boasts 19 wins and broke the top 10 for the highest winnings earned on the show.

“You had to do something pretty impressive to be here,” Jason said in the video.

Sam Kavanaugh, a five-game winner and gifted “Jeopardy!” player in his own right, went so far as to classify his competition by animal species.

“I had prepared like animal nicknames for types of contestants. The cheetah who runs down the board and like you can’t keep up with him. A python or something that drops from the tree and like strangles you to death. And so I had to bounce around and be like a mongoose,” he said in the video.

If Sam is any indication, the contestants are taking their competition seriously. And as they should, considering the prize pool that’s on the line. The overall champion stands to take home $250,000, with second and third place getting $100,000 and $50,000, respectively.

Meet the ‘Jeopardy!’ Tournament of Champions Competition

On Monday, May 17, the first group of three contestants will face off against one another for a chance to move on to the next round.

Ryan Bilger, a graduate student from Macungie, Pennsylvania, is among the first group contestants. And he has been waiting for the moment his whole life.

“This is my Super Bowl. This is my World Series. It feels like everything in my life has been building to this very moment,” he said in the Tournament of Champions trailer.

Joining Ryan is Sarah Jett Rayburn, a writer and stay-at-home mom from Hutto, Texas. She has four “Jeopardy!” wins to her name, and she too is ready to get back out on that stage.

“It’s like a beautiful dream is coming back to me again. It’s so exciting,” she said.

Sarah and Ryan will have their work cut out for them, as they contend with the third and most accomplished player in the group. That’s right. Jason Zuffranieri is in the first batch of contestants to play. And we’re definitely going to be tuned in.