Jeopardy! may already have found the perfect next host for when Alex Trebek retires: current contestant and phenomena, James Holzhauer. Trebek has hosted the popular game show since 1984 but the network would need a worthy successor to fill his iconic role. His contract was originally set to expire in 2020 but it was renewed through 2022.
If Trebek fulfills his current Jeopardy! contract, he will be 82 years old. Of course, his current health issues may throw a wrench in his plans to work through that age. A few months ago, the beloved game show host announced that he had been diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer. The news shocked fans but their love and support truly uplifted Trebek. He vowed to beat the odds and continue his hosting duties. Just recently, Trebek announced that he was responding very well to the treatment. Trebek never let his health ordeal put a dampening mood on the show.
Despite the worry, it's been an exciting time for the game show as of late. Contestant James Holzhauer made his first Jeopardy! appearance on April 4. Since then, he has broken a number of Jeopardy! earning records and earned himself the nickname "Jeopardy James."
Holzhauer currently holds the Jeopardy! record for the most single-game earnings. He's on the verge of dethroning Ken Jennings' 15-year record of most earnings. To make the feat even more remarkable, Holzhauer might beat the record in less than half the amount of games than it took the reigning champ. Jennings believes he could hold his own against Holzhauer but he's still very impressed, as are the viewers. During Holzhauer's current winning streak, the ratings for Jeopardy! have notably increased.
Despite the fact that Holzhauer shows no signs of slowing down, all things must come to an end. He will surely take over as the ultimate record breaker in Jeopardy! history, but what would be next for the contestant? The game show is one of the most respected in the industry so there's not much more he could prove. Holzhauer would, however, make a great candidate for hosting duties in the future. Jeopardy! had reportedly been searching for Alex Trebek's replacement but there's no indication when that will be.
In a perfect world, Alex Trebek would host Jeopardy! forever. Indeed, it would be so strange to see the game show continue without their most popular host. But eventually, he'll pass the torch. Filming years' worth of Jeopardy! episodes is a difficult task for anyone, let alone a man in his 80s. Trebek deserves a break and Holzhauer could easily be the network's answer.
There's no doubt that Holzhauer has the intelligence to carry out as the Jeopardy! host. The quiz show has put his vast array of knowledge on display but it's his playing strategy that is truly admirable. Not only does he know the game, but he also seems like a genuinely good person. Holzhauer has been known to donate some of his winnings to charities which have surely put more fans in his corner. When Trebek retires, Holzhauer should not only be the producers' pick for the new host, he should also be the fan's choice.