The ultimate game of wits recently saw an amazing feat for one of its biggest champions. Yale Ph.D student and twenty eight time Jeopardy! winner, Matt Amidio made history as the show’s third contestant to surpass the billion dollar benchmark in cash prizes. He showed that memorizing trivia really does pay off as his earning of over $48 thousand from Friday’s episode have hoisted him to the fourth spot of the highest winning players in Jeopardy!.
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Before yesterday’s episode, the 30 year old computer science student had garnered $955,201 from flexing his metal muscles and winning twenty seven games of Jeopardy! in a row. His victorious twenty eight episode saw his adding $48,800 to his earning in the latest. This put the totality of his trivia cash prizes at $1,004,001.
“I knew it was a possibility, but I thought it was a very remote possibility, and to have it actually happen is unbelievable,” the champion exclaimed in a statement.
From his university lab buddies following the events on Slack to people he hadn’t spoken to since middle school congratulating him, Amidio achievement has what’s called, “beyond my wildest dreams.” What followed the million dollar milestone was a mountainous amount of reading, study, and of course, Wikipedia.
“I spend most nights starting somewhere on Wikipedia. I read everything there, but also get 10 or 15 links from that article to other things that I’m interested in,” Amidio says in an interview with his university’s newsletter, “That cascades to more and more, and before I know it, the night’s over and I still have thousands of things I still want to read.”
The Amidio may be the top dog on campus at Yale, there’s two other Jeopardy! contestants who have made quite the fortune from the show. Not entering in Jeopardy! tournaments, Ken Jennings holds the spot of the highest winning player of the show by cashing in $2,520,700 from his seventy four games. Close behind him is James Holzhauer, whose thirty two wins gave him $2,520,700. Though, Amidio still has a chance to catch up as he’s slated to return to the program on Monday.
While Amidio’s victory is certainly making headlines everywhere, the five decade old staple of television was recently in the news under some not so celebratory circumstances. After some rather offensive comments from his podcast from a year ago came to light, the Mike Richards steeped down as the show’s host. Lasting only one tapping, he was replaced by Ken Jennings and actress Mayim Bialik.
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Sources: Fox News, New York Post, Forbes
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