Answer: A graduate student from Delaware, who today broke the Jeopardy! record for one-day cash winnings. Craig earned $77,000 in Tuesday’s episode, surpassing former champion Ken Jennings, best known for his 74-game win streak (and finding as many ways to write his name on the contestant podium).
Jennings held the previous record of $75,000 for more than six years.
Craig, a 33-year-old student at the University of Delaware, first appeared on Monday’s season premiere episode, and his two-day cash winnings now total $114,000.
“Breaking Ken Jennings record is simply amazing,” Craig said of tonight’s win. “I knew that I had a chance to set the new record going into Final Jeopardy! so I thought what the heck… I’ll go for it.”
Could this be the start of another marathon contestant streak? If Craig truly wants to surpass Jennings, he has his work cut out for him, as the software engineer from Utah still holds the records for highest American game show winnings total and most consecutive appearances on a syndicated game show, among a slew of other Jeopardy-specific titles.
If he does make a go of it, it can only help the ratings of the quiz show that consistently falls short of perennial ratings winner Wheel of Fortune’s numbers. Jennings’ 2004 run raised Jeopardy!’s ratings 22% over the same period the year before, according to a USA Today article.
A video clip of Craig correctly answering the final question is below.