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This Year's Jeopardy College Championships Winner is...

avocadoavocado Posts: 141Registered User Junior Member
edited February 2010 in College Confidential Cafe
Washington U. student wins 'Jeopardy' competition - STLtoday.com

The winner gets $100,000. Pretty nice, no?

Jeopardy! has a College Championship every year where top schools like Columbia, Yale, WUSTL, Brown, UCLA, UMich, and occasionally Harvard duke it out (oh yes, I think Duke may have advanced in the rounds before) Interestingly these schools are huge nerd schools xD ("nerd" not in a derogatory way...I'm a nerd myself)

I think the finals match was between Washington University, UCLA, and UMich. Columbia and Yale were beaten in the semifinals but they made a strong showing.

I watched the show, and every school was pretty much amazing. I've done trivia bowls before, and I didn't know half of the answers to the questions.


I'm a big quiz bowl fan and think a good deal of you might be too so just thought I would share this. So for you overachieving trivia bowl/science bowl/ quiz bowl ppl out there, you know you have a chance to win 100K in your future =)


What would you do with 100K if you won Jeopardy College Championships?
Post edited by avocado on
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Replies to: This Year's Jeopardy College Championships Winner is...

  • muchoschocolatemuchoschocolate Posts: 179Registered User Junior Member
    Uh. I know my mom would love me even more if I won $100,000.

    If I won $100,000 I'd use it all on college.
    But I probably couldn't win it at Jeopardy!
  • coureurcoureur Posts: 11,386Registered User Senior Member
    The colleges represented among the Jeopardy College Champions are:

    2010 Wash. U.
    2009 Notre Dame
    2008 Mississippi St.
    2007 UCLA
    2005 Stanford
    2004 Carnegie Mellon
    2003 Middlebury
    2002 Texas A&M
    2001 Stanford
    2000 Loyola of Chicago
    2000 Drew Univ.
    1999 Univ. of Chicago
    1998 Harvey Mudd
    1997 Univ. of Michigan
    1996 Univ. of Arkansas
    1995 Univ. of Oklahoma
    1994 BYU
    1993 Grinnell College
    1992 William & Mary
    1991 Georgia Tech
    1990 Rutgers
    1989 SMU
  • slik nikslik nik Posts: 1,083Registered User Senior Member
    Rice and Emory were also represented in the Jeopardy college championships last year. The girl from Rice beat a guy from Harvard and would have beaten a girl from Princeton if she waged all her money in Final Jeopardy :)

    But that's great someone from WashU won Jeopardy this year... it definitely helps prove the point that WashU students are just as smart as those from the Ivies, especially since schools like WashU get a lot of crap on this site.
  • OhioMom2OhioMom2 Posts: 639Registered User Member
    I was not impressed by the performances of any of the Ivy contestants this year to be honest.
  • coureurcoureur Posts: 11,386Registered User Senior Member
    >>it definitely helps prove the point that WashU students are just as smart as those from the Ivies, especially since schools like WashU get a lot of crap on this site.<<

    It helps prove nothing of the sort. What it helps prove is that there was one kid from Wash U who was a better player than any of the other 14 players entered this year. The wide variety among the schools listed in post #3 helps prove that the strength or reputation of the school has pretty much nothing to do with who is going to do well on Jeopardy.

    I'm a former Jeopardy champion myself (regular show not college tournament), and I can tell you that Jeopardy success is not a good measure intelligence. A truly stupid person cannot win on Jeopardy, but what it takes to win more than anything else is having a "knack" for playing the game. Basically a good memory, quick recall, and good button pushing reflexes. That is by no means the same thing as intelligence.
  • zenith602zenith602 Posts: 394- Member
    I bet the contestants were probably were really nervous because Jeopardy is watched by about 2 million viewers a show (someone please confirm this for me)

    But congratulations to the guy from Washington University in St. Louis
    Not an easy feat

    And if I had $100,000 I would save it for graduate education.
  • coureurcoureur Posts: 11,386Registered User Senior Member
    ^^Yes, I can confirm that Jeopardy players are usually very nervous when they play. And I haven't checked Jeopardy's ratings for several years, but the last time I looked it was watched on a daily basis by about 15 million viewers.
  • JadduaJaddua Posts: 532Registered User Member
    Was anyone else pleasant surprised by the girl from Mizzou? Her and the girl from Yale seemed like the only interesting people, to be honest. Plus, the girl from Mizzou also fared pretty well.
  • rjkofnovirjkofnovi Posts: 8,797Registered User Senior Member
    Just wonder how many women have won these tournaments? The reason I ask is that having a quick trigger is very important and I am curious if the reflexes of women are as fast as men.
  • GreeneryGreenery Posts: 975Registered User Member
    Coureur posted: I'm a former Jeopardy champion myself (regular show not college tournament), and I can tell you that Jeopardy success is not good measure intelligence.

    Good for you! Please share your experiences...I'm always wonder how does the competitors know so much in different subjects. Different categories make the game interesting, but how do they know? Are there are any books to prepare a participant for Jeopardy?
  • musicmommusicmom Posts: 2,261Registered User Senior Member
    Yes, please tell us what it was like, coureur.

    H and I watch every afternoon together. Love the show. H gets all the music and history questions right, I'm only good for the medical and science ones.
    Together, we make ONE great contestant!
  • GreeneryGreenery Posts: 975Registered User Member
    Musicmom...good story! They should organize a "family" or "couples" Jeopardy
  • coureurcoureur Posts: 11,386Registered User Senior Member
    >>Please share your experiences...I'm always wonder how does the competitors know so much in different subjects. Different categories make the game interesting, but how do they know? Are there are any books to prepare a participant for Jeopardy?<<

    I can tell you what worked for me. To begin with, Jeopardy knowledge is a mile wide and an inch deep. You need to know something about a lot of things but not very much about anything. Plus you need to have a mental knack for being able to sort, store, and quickly recall and link a wide range of discrete facts. And if I had to sum up learning Jeopardy knowledge in a single phrase, I'd say that success on Jeopardy comes from a lifetime of paying attention.

    And once you have acquired a huge base of information from years of reading, traveling, watching TV, etc., Jeopardy players usually augment that with memorization to cram certain facts for the actual games. You need to memorize certain lists: US presidents, the birth places of the US presidents, state capitals, state nicknames, world capitals, famous operas and their composers, etc. All this knowledge needs to be instantly at your fingertips. But notice that all these lists are finite lists. Memorization is no good for trying to master huge bodies of knowledge or abstract concepts.

    Jeopardy itself provides no information whatsoever about what to learn or study. That might be considered a form of giving the contestants the answers in advance, like the quiz show cheating scandals of the 1950s. They just tell you to prepare by watching the show. There are prep books you can buy, usually written by former champions. Like SAT prep books they are variable in quality.


    >>Just wonder how many women have won these tournaments? The reason I ask is that having a quick trigger is very important and I am curious if the reflexes of women are as fast as men.<<

    Women have won the College Tournament five times and the grand Tournament of Champions twice. Men do tend to dominate on Jeopardy but that has more to do with gender patterns in betting strategy on Daily Doubles and Final Jeopardy than reflexes. Decades of physiologial research has shown that women's reflexes are every bit as fast as men's. But on Jeopardy women are often (but not always) less willing to bet all their money on one throw late in the game to pull out the win. They often seem more willing to coast to a safe second place finish rather than risk the embarrassment of failing and falling to zero. Also, for years Jeopardy has been criticized for focusing on "male knowledge" - sports, history, military, etc. They have tried hard in recent years to balance the categories better, but there still may be some bias there.

    Back in the day I was a pretty good player. In the regular season I was an undefeated five-time champion. I qualified to come back later for the Tournament of Champions where I won the quarterfinal match but tragically lost in the semifinals to another excellent champion - a woman. There was certainly nothing wrong with her reflexes or betting strategy.
  • musicmommusicmom Posts: 2,261Registered User Senior Member
    Fascinating! Thanks for sharing here, coureur. Quite impressive, 5 time undefeated champion through to the semis, wow.

    I love your claim that Jeopardy contestants need to have knowledge a mile wide and an inch deep....I can really see that. I am still amazed though. My knowledge is apparently only a meter wide and cm deep (I'm a scientist and use metric,see?) :)

    Of all the topics, OPERA always pops up. Really, I'm married to a musician and still haven't picked any opera up by osmosis. Maybe in the next 25 years of marriage.

    Thanks again!
  • GreeneryGreenery Posts: 975Registered User Member
    Wonderful recount of a great experience Coureur! I enjoyed reading it. Thanks!
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