Top 10 ‘Jeopardy!’ streaks and where Amy Schneider ranks among them

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Few game shows in history have the hype and prestige of Jeopardy!. Between the death of longtime host Alex Trebek, the controversy around finding a new one and the history making run of engineering manager Amy Schneider, the show is white-hot.

This kind of attention is rare for a daily game show – a segment of entertainment seen as relatively mild and predictable, especially one that premiered in 1964. Regardless, it is a testament to the show’s easy to follow yet at times nail-bitingly exciting format.

One of the more compelling parts of the show is when someone like Schneider comes along and catches fire with a winning streak. Schneider is actually part of a long history of streaks on the show. Where does she rank? Let’s take a look, courtesy of the Jeopardy! Hall of Fame.

10. Seth Wilson

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In 2016, Seth Wilson, then a PhD student, won 12 games in a row. He took home $265,002, and is now a writer, editor and theater scholar.

9. Austin Rogers

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A year after Wilson won his 12 games, Rogers won 12 as well. He endeared audiences with both his quirky hairdo and sense of humor. The bartender won $411,000 and kept his day job afterwards, according to CNBC. Since the show, he’s been busy hosting trivia, podcasts and writing a book.

8. Matt Jackson

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Matt Jackson is a paralegal who won 13 games in a row in 2015. He won $411,612 and maintains a Facebook fan page where he announced he’s one of the writers for The New Yorker‘s Name Drop quiz.

7. David Madden

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Madden is an art historian and won 19 games in a row in 2005. He won $430,400. At the time, it was the second-highest number of wins after Ken Jennings.

6. Jason Zuffranieri

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Zuffranieri won 19 games in a row in 2019. He’s a math teacher who earned $532,496 throughout the course of his streak. He returned to compete in Tournament of Champions in 2021 and walked away with $10k after losing to Jennifer Quail.

5. Julia Collins

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Marking the first woman on the list, Collins won $428,100 on a 20-game-streak in 2014. She previously held the record for the woman with the biggest streak on the list, until Schneider broke it this year.

4. James Holzhauer

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Now we’re getting into the heavy hitters. Holzhauer is a familiar name to Jeopardy! enthusiasts. He won 32 games in 2019, and he holds a number of records, including highest all-time single-game winnings at $131,127 on April 17 of that year. Holzhauer, a professional gambler, used the unorthodox strategy of betting all his earnings and seeking out daily doubles. He walked away with $2,462,216.

3. Matt Amodio

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This Yale PhD student won 38 games in a row and took home $1,518,601. He’s third place in highest winnings during regular season play as well, behind Holzhauer and Jennings. He’ll appear in the upcoming Tournament of Champions 2022.

2. Amy Schneider

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This is Schneider’s moment. She won 39 games in a row recently, earning her the second place title. She won a total of $1,382,800 and she’ll also appear in the Tournament of Champions this year, becoming the first woman to do so.

Schneider knew the outcome of her streak for months but had to keep quiet about it until her episode aired. She said losing was a mix of disappointment and relief.

“Playing Jeopardy! has been the most fun I’ve ever had, and I didn’t want it to end,” she said. “I knew it would sometime, but it was tough to realize that the moment was finally there.”

1. Ken Jennings

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Widely considered the best to ever play the game, Jennings is the current host of the show along with Mayim Bialik. He has the longest streak ever with 74 games in a row won and he’s the all-time biggest winner with $2,520,700 in earnings.

Jennings told ET that he saw Trebek in a new light after taking over hosting duties on the show.

“I thought I had studied the man and I understood just what a remarkable job he was doing keeping the game going mastering his sense that he understood all the clues because he did explaining it to the audience,” Jennings said.

The beauty of the show is that you never know when the next Jennings, Amodio or Schneider will show up and leave a lasting legacy on the game.