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James Holzhauer
0524-james-holzhauer-jepoardy-2.jpg
Name: James Holzhauer
Born: July 23, 1984
Occupation: Sports gambler
Years active: 2019-present
Known for: His appearances on Jeopardy! and The chaser

James Holzhauer (also known as The High Roller) (born July 23, 1984) is a sports gambler from Las Vegas, Nevada who is best known for becoming the second-highest money-winner in regular play on Jeopardy! behind Ken Jennings (and third-highest overall behind Jennings and Brad Rutter – both on Jeopardy! and on game shows overall).

Early Life[]

James appeared on the U.S. version of The Chase on September 2, 2014. In the Cash Builder round, he answered 12 out of 13 questions correctly. In the Final Cash round, he faced challenger Mark Labbett, whom he faced in the previous round, and beating him 26 to 9. He won $58,333.33 on that show.

He appeared on 500 Questions on May 22, 2015. He was unable to dethrone Steve Bahnaman, the incumbent champion, and therefore didn't receive any winnings.

Jeopardy! Run[]

Strategy[]

  • A typical player will hit from top to bottom, but James secures the high amount in the 5th row first to secure the wager he spent on the Daily Double.
  • On average, there is a high probability that Daily Double appears in the 4th row, so use it to secure his wager.
  • Based on the fan site database and various knowledge, it shows the Daily Double correct rate of 94.7% (72/76).
  • In the Final Jeopardy, even when the lock game already confirmed, he bet boldly. Occasionally adjust his wager to coincide with anniversaries.

Original Run[]

In 2019, Holzhauer appeared on Jeopardy! starting on April 4, where he won 32 games and accumulated a total of $2,462,216. On April 9, he set a new one-day record with $110,914, breaking the previous record of $77,000 set by Roger Craig on September 14, 2010 (which, in turn, eclipsed the previous record of $75,000 set by Ken Jennings on July 23, 2004); and on April 17, he eclipsed his record with $131,127. He is the first and only contestant to win $100,000 or more in a single game, accomplishing the feat six times. He currently holds the top twelve spots for the highest single-day winnings records in regular play. In addition to his aggressive wagering strategy on Daily Doubles and Final Jeopardy! clues, he selects the highest-value clues on the board first to amass his totals quickly and increase his potential wager upon finding a Daily Double.

  • Green is top 10 highest winning, yellow is non-lock game, red is elimination.
Game No. Air Date Final score Cumulative Winnings Additional Notes
1 April 4, 2019 $43,680 $43,680 The defending champion, Alex Koral, had previously defeated 5-time champion Steven Grade, who would lose to Holzhauer in the semifinals of the 2019 Tournament of Champions.
2 April 5, 2019 $38,925 $82,606 First game in which Holzhauer did not have a runaway.
3 April 8, 2019 $50,845 $133,451 He is the champion who won $100,000 just three times in just three years after Andrew Pau ($105,202), and it is the record for the most prize money in three consecutive victories after six-win champion Roger Craig ($138,401).
4 April 9, 2019 $110,914 $244,365 First time Holzhauer broke the one-day record, and the first time anyone won $100,000 in one regular-play game. This shattered Roger Craig’s $77,000, and with a difference of $33,914, this remains the largest margin between one-day records. This also breaks Austin Rogers’ record for largest Final Jeopardy bet, with $38,314 to Rogers’ $34,000, and breakd the all-record before FJ! ($72,400), set at $55,000 by Jack Lechner (12/2/98).
5 April 10, 2019 $54,322 $298,687 Holzhauer breaks Frank Spangenberg’s 5-day record of $205,194 (adjusted for double dollar values) by $93,493.
6 April 11, 2019 $27,190 $325,877 Only regular-play game in which Holzhauer failed to provide a correct response in Final Jeopardy.
7 April 12, 2019 $89,158 $415,035
8 April 15, 2019 $45,444 $460,479 Reached second-place on all-time Jeopardy! regular play winnings list (2nd place at the time: David Madden - $430,400).
9 April 16, 2019 $106,181 $566,660
10 April 17, 2019 $131,127 $697,787 Holzhauer breaks his own one-day record by $20,213 and his own Final wager record by $21,699. This is also the first and only time anyone has wagered $50,000 or more on Final Jeopardy and responded correctly.
11 April 18, 2019 $74,133 $771,920
12 April 19, 2019 $80,006 $851,926
13 April 22, 2019 $90,812 $942,738
14 April 23, 2019 $118,816 $1,061,554 The previous record for fastest time to reach $1 million was in 30 games, set by Ken Jennings in 2004. (Jennings is now in fourth in this regard as Matt Amodio and Amy Schneider reached the same point after 28 games.)
15 April 24, 2019 $73,621 $1,135,175 Moved into #10 on American game show winnings list.
16 April 25, 2019 $90,812 $1,225,987 Moved into #9 on American game show winnings list.
17 April 26, 2019 $49,600 $1,275,587 Only game in which Holzhauer did not find any of the Daily Doubles.
18 April 29, 2019 $54,017 $1,329,604 First game in which shoutouts were no longer allowed, second time Holzhauer did not have a runaway, and the closest margin of victory ($18). Adam Levin’s $53,999 is currently the record for highest second place score.
19 April 30, 2019 $96,726 $1,426,330 Ties David Madden for third-longest winning streak and breaks Madden's record of most correct answers in a game without being incorrect one time (44 including Final, compared to Madden's 36). Additionally, Holzhauer breaks Ben Ingram's record for most consecutive Final Jeopardy responses (12).
20 May 1, 2019 $101,682 $1,528,012 Ties Julia Collins for second-longest winning streak.
Moved up to #8 on American game show winnings list.
21 May 2, 2019 $80,615 $1,608,627
22 May 3, 2019 $82,381 $1,691,008 Holzhauer take a break for two weeks after this for the annual Teacher’s Tournament, which saw fellow ToC finalist Francois Barcomb take home the $100,000 prize (Barcomb is also only the second Teacher champion to make it to the 3rd place of the ToC).
23 May 20, 2019 $89,229 $1,780,237 Moved up to #6 on American game show winnings list.
24 May 21, 2019 $86,905 $1,867,142 Moved up to #5 on American game show winnings list.
25 May 22, 2019 $71,885 $1,939,027
26 May 23, 2019 $52,108 $1,991,135 Third game in which Holzhauer did not have a runaway.
27 May 24, 2019 $74,400 $2,065,535 The previous record for fastest time to hit $2 million was in 59 games, set by Ken Jennings in 2004.
28 May 27, 2019 $130,022 $2,195,557 Despite how the scores looked, Holzhauer could not safely break his own one day record; the most he could've wagered is $58,821 to cover challenger Monica Foy's doubled score, which would bring him up to $130,843.
Moved up to #4 on American game show winnings list.
29 May 28, 2019 $59,381 $2,254,938
30 May 29, 2019 $69,033 $2,323,971
31 May 30, 2019 $58,613 $2,382,583
32 May 31, 2019 $79,633 $2,462,216
33 June 3, 2019 $24,799 $2,464,216 Fourth game in which Holzhauer did not have a runaway. Emma Boettcher ends Holzhauer’s streak and goes on to win two more games herself, making her the (for the time) most successful giant killer.
The Combined Coryat score for the game of $53,200 is an all-time regular play record[1].

End of the Streak[]

On June 3, 2019, Holzhauer was defeated by challenger Emma Boettcher, falling short of Ken Jennings's regular-game winnings record by $58,484. one day ago, some station accidentally aired the Final Jeopardy! round from Holzhauer's last show. Over the weekend, video clips of that fateful Final Jeopardy! circulated over the internet. Neither James nor Emma answered a single clue incorrectly for the entire game, and challenger Jay Sexton only gave one incorrect response, giving the trio a record Combined Coryat Score of $53,200. Emma found both daily doubles in Double Jeopardy, wagered aggressively on both, and answered them both correctly, giving her the lead going into Final Jeopardy at $26,600 to James’ $23,400 (with Jay sitting in third at $11,000). Emma wagered $20,201 to cover James, while James wagered $1,399 to lock out Jay, securing second place and assuring a win if Emma was wrong and presumably wagered a large sum. All three players ultimately answered Final Jeopardy correctly, ending James's streak. Coincidentally, he stepped down a day before Ken Jennings's first appearance date.[2]

Tournament of Champions[]

In November of 2019, James returned to the Jeopardy stage to face off against 14 other champions in the annual Tournament of Champions. Emma was also invited, being given a wildcard spot after 2018 Teacher’s Tournament winner Larry Martin died in late January of the same year. James managed to turn both his quarterfinal and semifinal games into runaways, and ended up facing off against Emma and 2019 Teacher’s Tournament winner Francois Barcomb.

Emma was barely able to prevent James from turning the tournament into a runaway, with a possible total of $69,600 as compared to James’ at-the-time total of $67,111 going into the second day’s Final Jeopardy. (With a maximum possible total of $5,000, Barcomb was locked out of first and second place.) All three players got Final Jeopardy correct, and James had wagered enough to cover Emma’s possible total of $69,600, finishing with $76,923. Emma’s total of $65,000 is currently the highest non-winning total in any tournament.

None of the previous 10+ game winners had won a Tournament of Champions before, with the closest player to that 10-win threshold being Dan Pawson and Buzzy Cohen with 9 games[3].

Jeopardy! The Greatest of All Time[]

After the Tournament of Champions concluded, Holzhauer competed against Jennings and Rutter for a million dollars on Jeopardy: The Greatest of All Time, a primetime special that aired January 7-14, 2020, on ABC. Holzhauer finished in second place and took home $250,000.

Records[]

In a nutshell, a lot of great records came out during James's days, but the records he set are as follows.

  • 4th longest winning streak in history (32 games)[4]
  • One-day highest winning: $131,127 (4/9/19)[5][6]
  • Up to $100K+ (6-time)
  • One-day 3rd-highest Coryat Score: $38,200 (5/1/19)[7]
  • Most consecutive correct Final Jeopardy answer (28): From the 6th game to the ToC quarterfinal[8]
  • Most consecutive correct answers without incorrect answer (181)
  • All-time highest total Coryat Score: $53,200 (6/3/19)
  • Biggest 5-day Jeopardy! regular play winnings leader ($298,687)[9]
  • Biggest Daily Double earning: $25K (4/9/19, 4/17/19)
  • Biggest True Daily Double earning: $20,200 (1/14/20 from Greatest of all-time tournament)
  • Biggest Final Jeopardy! earning: $60,013 (4/17/19)
  • Highest Jeopardy! round score: $21,800 (5/27/19)
  • Highest Double Jeopardy! round score: $72,600 (4/9/19)

Although buried in james, the challengers' skills were also great. During his tenure, there were 9 episodes with a team Coryat Score of $50,000 or more, and 3 episodes where no one, including FJ, gave a single wrong answer (5/1/19, 5/21/19, 5/28/19) Also, the last two episodes are the episodes where everyone got the second most correct answers without giving a single wrong answer so far (58)[10]. Later, on 7/4/19, it was tied with this record.

Adam Levin, a loser in an 18-game winning streak, set the record for the best among contenders, and even left an all-time high Coryat Score of $53,200 when James dropped out[11]. Interest was very high, and during the time he was active, not only did the ratings rise quite a bit, but there were also spoilers before he left.

In particular, he was a champion who aroused overwhelming interest while maintaining his position as the champion for 32 games, and the main reason was his daring challenge in the Daily Double and his outstanding skills. Because of that, there were many reactions such as 'I want to see more of his skills' and 'I am looking forward to a match every time,' so there were many people who regretted his departure.

After his departure, the S35 also recorded various records, including two tie-breakers, and later S37 ToC winner Sam Kavanaugh and later Jason Zuffranieri joined Ultrachampion with 19 straight wins.

It can be said that it is another heyday of Jeopardy following the Ken Jenning reign, and many fans miss that time after Covid-19.

Evaluation[]

He is a champion who left a strong impression among the champions with more than 10 wins, and a participant who has been solo for a long time since Ken Jennings. In particular, unlike other champions, he was able to earn money quickly, and he showed a skill that surpassed Ken jennings.

To some extent, his five-game winning streak of $298,687 beats Arthur Chu's 11-game winning streak ($297,200) and Seth Wilson's 12-game winning streak of $265,002.

Also, when senior Ken Jennings raised $1 million and $2 million in 30 and 59 days, respectively, James did the job in 14 and 27 days. That's twice as fast as the 28 days of Matt Amodio and Amy Schneider, who have since become millionaires.

It was none other than the Daily Double that he was able to break multiple records in a short period of time. His Daily Double earned him a whopping $654,416[12]. What's more, he's failed a Daily Double in only 4 of 76 regular games.[13]

In his case, like a gambler, he bet big on Daily Double and Final Jeopardy, and he did a great job winning most of them. Others are safety-oriented and bet only a small amount when they enter the safety zone, but he bet at least $10,000, and most of them got it right.

Because he performed so much better than Ken Jennings, people expected a match against Ken Jennings, and there were many people who expected that he would break Ken Jennings' regular game and winning streak record, as well as the record set by Brad rutter on Jeopardy.

However, even for him who set such a great record, Ken's winning streak and prize money were not allowed. On June 3, 2019, he, who had been on a long winning streak, handed over the title of champion to Emma, ​​and his glorious history came to an end. People expressed disappointment that the result could have been different if James did not pick the Daily Double at the beginning of the jeopardy round at this time, but picked it midway. On the other hand, there was an opinion that it was fortunate that I did not meet a talented person like Emma in the beginning.

Nevertheless, his activity continued even after the regular game. In the ToC, he won the ToC, which was not even a champion with more than 10 wins, and in the meantime, many contenders came up, but no one was victorious, so Ken won the battle between Brads.

All in all, he was better than Ken Jennings, but unfortunately he didn't have luck at the crucial moment. There was also an opinion that the result would have been different if he had hit more Daily Doubles when he was playing against Ken on GOAT.

Anyway, it is not an exaggeration to say that he opened a new paradigm as a person who changed the history of Jeopardy 15 years after Ken, and later challengers who achieved more than $70,000 such as Matt and Amy appeared.

After that, as Jason Zuffranieri, who won 19 consecutive wins, was eliminated from the ToC semi-finals, he was also evaluated as 'the best pen does not cover the brush'.

Matt Amodio and Amy Schneider later joined the ranks of millionaires, dropping their winning streak to fourth place with 38 and 40 wins, respectively. Still, it maintains the 2nd place with the most prize money in a regular game.

Because of that, there are a lot of fans who regret that he left early[14].

Common with Other Champions[]

Ken Jennings[]

  • Among the contestants who competed, the contestant who competed in 18 consecutive wins was the best recorder.
  • When reached best record, we competed against two female challengers. Ken at 38 games and James at 10 games.
  • Continuous FJ! The record of correct answers is more than 10 times.
  • Both handed over the championship titles to a female challenger.
  • The two men's fates were split over a Shakespeare issue, which led Ken to win his best and GOAT competition, while James lost Ken's regular game record break and handed over his GOAT win.

Dan Pawson[]

  • Like James, he wrote various records. Among the champions with 6 consecutive wins or more, there is a record of the only win under $1,000, the first ToC winner with 6 consecutive wins or more, and the first among those who received ToC top-seed, a champion whose prize money was not ranked first.
  • Both were awarded Top-seed among ToC participants, and all finalists advanced to their own without WC.

Roger Craig[]

  • Both hold records of over $70,000, and their three-game winning streak received a prize money of $130,000+.[15]
  • Roger was the best of Highest 5-game total on Jeopardy!, first 5 games (unadjusted), Highest single-game total on Jeopardy!, Largest true daily double bet (unadjusted), Largest daily double bet (unadjusted) until James appeared. He was the champion who held the record.
  • Both are ToC winners, with records of over $10,000 in Daily Doubles on ToC. It is the same as winning the Lock Game before the finals. However, the difference is that James won the match against Emma again.
  • Both have had previous matches against Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter, with James claiming one win over them.

Julia Collins[]

  • Both had their first win against a champion who had beaten a champion with five or more wins in a row.
  • The airing dates were from mid-April to early June, and both took a two-week break due to a special tournament held in May. Also, after winning two weeks after the tournament, the defeat day was the same as Monday, and the defeat time was similar.

Austin Rogers[]

  • Both performed big on Daily Double and Final Jeopardy, with big bets. Also, in both regular game FJ!, they got all but one question right.
  • Both men have broken their own records. Austin at 5-6 wins, James at 4 and 10 wins. Besides, James is FJ! up to wager.

Matt Amodio[]

  • Both had over $40,000 in their first game.
  • Both broke the $100,000 mark in three games.
  • Both have records of over $80,000.
  • Both dropped off on Monday, and the winning opponents have all succeeded in winning streak. In addition, both have qualified for the ToC, and among the champions with 10 or more wins, only two of them are the only ones.[16]

Amy Schneider[]

  • Both broke the $100,000 mark after three consecutive wins.
  • Like James, she renewed his record. In the case of Amy, she broke the Coryat Score and the all-time high among women.
  • So far, there are at least 23 correct answers before FJ[17].

Mattea Roach[]

  • The time of the first activity is similar, and Mattea participated a day late.
  • Both broke their jinx. James broke the jinx that anyone who wins 10+ won't get a repeat champion, and a 10+ win champion won't win the ToC jinx, Mattea has 6+ wins in a row that Who played FJ alone, and among the ultrachamp, on Friday was the first to lose.
  • Both have won by narrow margins, with James winning by $18 in his 18 game and Mattea winning by $1 in her 17 game[18].
  • All of the newly born female champions succeeded in winning streak.

Shows appeared[]

Trivia[]

Jeopardy![]

  • Many of his Daily Double bets or Final Jeopardy winnings symbolize important dates in his life, such as 9,812 (9/8/12, the date of his marriage) or 110,914 (11/09/14, the birth date of his daughter).
  • He is the first and only contestant to ever win $100,000 or more in a single episode of Jeopardy.
  • He also holds the record for largest Daily Double bet, with $25,000.
  • On his appeared on The Chase, he set a record by correctly answering 12 out of the 13 questions he was asked. The 13th question was counted as wrong due to him running out of time.
  • By the end of his 32-game streak, he had correctly responded to 32 Final Jeopardy clues, which is the highest game/right response ratio on the show. The only game in which he got the question wrong was his 6th.
  • He is the fifth player to be at the top seed of the ToC leaderboard to win the ToC following Chuck Forrest, Dan Melia, Dave Abbott, and Dan Pawson.
  • He also holds the record for most consecutive correct Final Jeopardy responses, with 27.[19]
  • He has the fastest time to win $1 million (Game 14) and $2 million (Game 27) in regular play. He is also the second person to achieve both of those milestones.
  • He has the largest average WPS (winnings per show) on Jeopardy, totaling $74,673.
  • He is also the first person to surpass an average WPS of $40,000, $50,000, $60,000, and $70,000.
  • He is often affectionately referred to as “Jeopardy James”.
  • He is 3rd for American game show winnings records.
  • Among the champions who have won more than 10 consecutive wins, the first broadcast date is Thursday[20].
  • Due to his success in jeopardy, sony sister program wheel of fortune had only 3 won BR from April 22 to June 7, 2019[21]. It is speculated that the bonus puzzles became more difficult due to He causing Jeopardy! to become so severely overbudget that Wheel's budget began to suffer as well, though this is never confirmed.

Other Game Shows[]

  • Additionally, his team got a 23-step run away from the Beast, with James contributing 19 answers. This is the largest head start by a team and the largest amount of answers contributed by a single person.
  • He has broken 14 show records across Jeopardy and The Chase, the most of any contestant in game show history.
  • He is co-hosting a revival of The Chase with Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter. His nickname is “The High Roller.”

Other[]

  • He has a six-year-old daughter whose name is unknown, though he is fond of referring to her as “Booger”.
  • His last name, Holzhauer, is German for “woodcutter”.

References[]

  1. The previous record was $53,000 on May 9, 1994 (1994 College Championship semifinal game 1, Before double clue value) and February 11, 2008 (2008-A Teen Tournament quarterfinal game 1).
  2. Additionally, the day Julia Collins and Dan Feitel left the show was the first appearance of Ken Jennings.
  3. Previously, among the ToC winners, the recipient of the most regular game prize money was Roger Craig ($230,200) with six consecutive wins.
  4. 3rd place is Matt Amodio's 38 wins, 2nd place is Amy Schneider's 40 wins, and 1st place is 74 wins set by Ken Jennings.
  5. This record even beats the record he set in his four-game winning streak of $110,914 again.
  6. Also, all of his records in 1-10 are his records, he currently holds 23 of the top 27 sing-game regular play totals of all time.
  7. 2nd place is $39,000 (8/10/21), set by Matt Amodio during his 7-game winning streak, and 1st place is $39,200 (6/10/04) by Ken Jennings, also set by Matt Amodio during his 7-game winning streak.
  8. If the correct answer had not been changed in the ToC semifinal, up to 35 consecutive correct answers would have been possible.
  9. To some extent, this record is more than Seth Wilson ($265,002), who has 12-games, and Arthur Chu ($297,200), who has 11-games (including condolences)!
  10. The best record was the College Championship semifinal game 1 on May 9, 1994, all but one question.
  11. If Jay Saxton had answered the $400 question, it could have achieved an unprecedented Perfect Coryat score.
  12. This record is almost double that of Matt A, the next highest DD earning record ($304,200).
  13. Especially when you gave the wrong answer 4 times, it was Jeopardy! It was a round, and there is an opinion that if he gave the wrong answer in Double Jeopardy, which had a lot of money, he would not have been able to hold the championship for long.
  14. On the other hand, there were also opinions that it was fortunate that I did not meet a talented person like Emma sooner.
  15. In the case of Roger in particular, he is the champion who made over $100,000 in just two games. Expanding to the whole, there is only Mark Runsvold ($103,000), the champion of the four-game winning streak.
  16. the former(emma) was ineligible, but made a special appearance.
  17. Matt A, James and Amy are the only champs with 10 wins or more who got less than 20 correct answers at least once.
  18. Mattea lost by a difference of $1 when leaving.
  19. From the first appearance, Ben ingram, who answered 12 questions in a row, is the best record.
  20. Monday: Julia Collins, Seth wilson, and Jonathan Fisher / Tuesday: David Madden, Arthur Chu, Austin Roger, and Mattea Roach / Wednesday: Ken Jenning, Matt Amodio, and Amy Schneider / Friday: Matt Jackson and Jason Zuffranieri
  21. Also All 20 Bonus Rounds are lost on the weeks of April 29 through May 20; this is the longest known losing streak in the Wheel's history.
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