‘Jeopardy!’: Who Won the Opening Rounds of the 2021 Tournament of Champions?

by Quentin Blount

Everyone knows by now that it is time for Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions. And we have officially made it through the opening rounds.

The Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions is a yearly tournament on the popular television game show. The tournament features 15 players who have won the most games from the past season. It started back in 1964 when Art Flemming was the host of the show. It has since continued on with host, Alex Trebek, and now guest host, Buzzy Cohen.

And now that we have officially wrapped up the first week of competition, it is time to look back at who the winners are and which wild cards will be competing in the semi-finals.

‘Jeopardy!’ Tournament of Champions Quarterfinals Winners

It has definitely been a year to remember, for better or for worse. Fans are currently experiencing the first-ever Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions without host Alex Trebek. We would definitely enjoy seeing him one more time next to the Jeopardy! board, joking with contestants between questions.

But in Trebek’s place this year is Buzzy Cohen. The nine-time champ and the winner of the 2017 Tournament of Champions has been doing a great job as guest host. He has helped navigate the show during this difficult transition and has done so successfully.

Even though it is a new era behind the iconic Jeopardy! lectern, someone has got to win. And after Friday night, we now know who all of those winners are from the quarterfinal rounds of the game show.

  • Monday, May 17: Ryan Bilger, a graduate student from Macungie, Pennsylvania, $32,405
  • Tuesday, May 18: Karen Farrell, Political Consultant from Chesapeake, Virginia, $16,200
  • Wednesday, May 19: Jennifer Quail, Wine Tasting Consultant from Dowagiac, Michigan, $20,650
  • Thursday, May 20: Kevin Walsh, Story Analyst from Williamstown, New Jersey, $16,000
  • Friday, May 21: Sam Kavanaugh, Teacher from Carlton, Minnesota

Which Wild Cards Will Be Moving On?

And just because they are down does not mean they are out. In fact, the way the Tournament of Champions is set up allows the top four non-game winners with the highest money totals to advance to the semifinals as wild cards. This year’s wild card watch will feature the following contestants:

  • Jason Zuffranieri, Math Teacher from Albuquerque, New Mexico, $18,800
  • Nibir Sarma, Junior at the University of Minnesota from Eden Prairie, Minnesota, $12,199
  • Ryan Hemmel, Legal Technology Professional, from Los Angeles, California, $11,600
  • Mackenzie Jones, STEM Programming Coordinator from Tulsa, Oklahoma, $9,000

In the end, nine contestants will be advancing to the semifinals on May 24-26. After that, three players will face off in a two-day championship round on May 27 and 28. Stay tuned in right here on Outsider for all of the latest Jeopardy! news.