“Jeopardy!” all-star and 2017 Tournament of Champions winner Buzzy Cohen is set to take to the podium as guest host of the quiz competition show’s upcoming 10-day tournament.
This year’s Tournament of Champions will take place from May 17-28, with 15 previous contestants coming back to compete for a $250,000 purse. That prize money will be matched and donated to the Hope of the Valley Trebek Center for the Homeless, which helps up to 300 people a year with shelter, intensive case management, mental health services, job training and placement, substance abuse counseling, housing navigation, life skill training and medical care.
Cohen, who first appeared on “Jeopardy!” in 2016, won $164,603 over the course of nine games, then returned the following year and again in 2019 as team captain for a “Jeopardy!” All-Star game.
There’s one small downside for the returning champ — since hosting has him working with writers and producers of the Sony Pictures Television-produced show, Cohen will no longer be able to compete in regular “Jeopardy!” tournaments.
“Buzzy has been where each of these champions is, so it’ll be comforting for the contestants to see a familiar face behind the lectern,” said Mike Richards, executive producer of ‘”Jeopardy!” of the fan favorite. “We will miss seeing him compete, but we look forward to seeing how he uses his quick wit and personality as guest host.”
The 15 Tournament of Champions players are those who won the most games between the last tournament and the end of calendar 2020, in addition to the most recent Teachers Tournament and College Championship winners. This year’s contestants are: Ryan Bilger, Karen Farrell, Ryan Hemmel, Ben Henri, Mackenzie Jones, Sam Kavanaugh, Steve Moulds, Jennifer Quail, Sarah Jett Rayburn, Nibir Sarma, Paul Trifiletti, Veronica Vichit-Vadakan, Kevin Walsh, Andy Wood, and Jazon Zuffranieri.
Since the death of beloved “Jeopardy!” host Alex Trebek last November, the show has been cycling through a series of interim hosts, starting with former champion Ken Jennings and including famous faces such as Katie Couric, Dr. Mehmet Oz and Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers. CNN host Anderson Cooper, “60 Minutes” journalist Bill Whitaker, “Big Bang Theory” star Mayim Bialik, “Today” co-anchor Savannah Guthrie, and CNN medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta are on tap to host in the coming weeks and months.
The #TournamentOfChampions is coming! Tune in May 17-28 for 2017 ToC Champ Buzzy Cohen guest hosting as 15 top competitors face off for $250K! @buzztronics https://t.co/hRlXGlcD2U pic.twitter.com/7P0i2UiXIZ
— Jeopardy! (@Jeopardy) April 14, 2021