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Odds to Be Next Host of Jeopardy! – Ken Jennings Listed as the Heavy Favorite

JJ De La Torre

by JJ De La Torre in Entertainment

Updated Mar 4, 2021 · 1:49 PM PST

Ken Jennings, a cast member in the ABC television series "Jeopardy! The Greatest of All Time," poses at the 2020 ABC Television Critics Association Winter Press Tour, in Pasadena, Calif. Jennings won his third match in the “Jeopardy!” “Greatest of all Time,” contest televised on Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2020, an event that's been a prime-time hit for ABC. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello, File)
  • With news of long-time Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek’s passing this week, the game show is searching for its next host
  • Before his passing, Trebek pre-recorded episodes that will run through the rest of 2020
  • See below for odds on the many options for Trebek’s successor including good longshot bets

The world lost a great on November 8 when Alex Trebek passed away. As the long-term host of Jeopardy!, Trebek charmed television audiences for over 35 years.

With Trebek’s passing, the silver screen landscape has a huge void to fill. Naturally, while fans mourn Trebek, producers are scrambling to decide who should succeed the beloved host.

A plethora of options would make worthy candidates. Previous Jeopardy! champions, renowned hosts of other programs, and various celebrities fill the list of odds. Let’s look at the list a bit further and see who actually has a chance to be the next Jeopardy! host.

Odds for Next Host of Jeopardy!

Host Odds
Ken Jennings +100
George Stephanopoulos +325
LeVar Burton +900
Neil deGrasse Tyson +1400
Pat Sajak +1600
Alex Faust +1800
Laura Coates +1800
Ryan Seacrest +1800
Tom Bergeron +1800
Jimmy Kimmel +2000
Katie Couric +2000
Mina Kimes +2200
Jane Lynch +2500
Neil Patrick Harris +2500
Trevor Noah +2800
Wolf Blitzer +2800
Drew Carey +3300
Chris Harrison +4000
Howie Mandel +4000
Jon Stewart +4000
Piers Morgan +4000
Steve Harvey +4000
Erin Andrews +5000
Nick Cannon +5000
Al Michaels +6600
Joe Rogan +6600
Rosie Perez +6600
Oprah Winfrey +10000
James Holzhauer +25000
Donald Trump +100000

Odds taken Nov. 12

From Contestant to Host

Ken Jennings presently has the best odds to succeed Trebek as the host of Jeopardy! Many fans of the game show will recognize Jennings’ name as one of the show’s most notorious contestants.

Jennings first rose to notoriety as a Jeopardy! contestant in 2004 with a record-breaking streak. He went on to become the highest-earning American game show contestant of all time. Jennings has become synonymous with the show, and his likelihood of being the next host makes sense.

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Why Ken Jennings? He’s beloved in the Jeopardy! universe. Given how much fans loved Trebek, producers of the show are looking for the next best thing. They clearly want to emulate that fan-host bond as much as they can in the shadow of Trebek’s absence.

Considering The Options

Mere hours after Trebek’s death became public knowledge, there were already articles online guessing the next host. Former White House staffer and current ABC News journalist George Stephanopoulos is apparently gunning for the job.

Stephanopoulos isn’t the most likely choice on paper, but his desire for the position have made his odds a lot more likely. But wanting something isn’t exactly enough. Given that Jennings is more associated with Jeopardy! he would make a better fit.

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But to find the next host, perhaps studio execs should listen to the person who knew best– Trebek himself. In a 2018 interview, Alex Trebek said he thought either LA Kings announcer Alex Faust or CNN legal analyst Laura Coates would make worthy hosts.

Worthy Long Shots

While there are definitely some familiar hosts whose names appear on the list of odds, there are some unlikely celebs here. Certain stars have poor odds for a reason– can you really imagine the sarcastic quip of Jane Lynch or nasty snark of Donald Trump being plugged in following Alex Trebek?

Other stars have made interesting transitions to the game show world. Drew Carey famously replaced the also-beloved Bob Barker on The Price is Right. Steve Harvey has equally excelled on Family Feud. But these stars are too tied up for the gig.

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Neil Patrick Harris doesn’t have the best odds, but he’s a consistently appreciated celebrity with the chops for the gig. Betting on him could end up being a good bet. Similarly, Jon Stewart has been a strong beacon of light for television fans in the past, and he could make a great host despite his weak odds.

Pick: Ken Jennings (+100)

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