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February 3, 2014

Battle of the Decades preview: 1980s, game 1

Battle of the Decades – preliminary round
1980s 1990s 2000s
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15
knockout rounds

Check out what actually happened.

Two TOC champions and another frequent face will fire the opening salvo to our tournament. (Click the names to see their wagering histories in “win or go home” single games. An asterisk denotes another competitor in the Battle of the Decades.)


India Cooper JeopardyIndia Cooper won her 5 games in Season 8, and made it to the semifinals of the Million Dollar Masters. She had mixed results in tournaments: a few locks (including against Robin Carroll and Babu Srinivasan in the same M$M game) before getting nearly shut out in the semis against Brad Rutter and Leslie Frates.


Chuck Forrest JeopardyChuck Forrest was the first “great” Jeopardy! champion in many fans’ eyes, locking up all of his regular games before Final (total: $72,800) and winning the 1986 Tournament of Champions. He received a bye into the second round of the 2005 Ultimate Tournament of Champions.

He is known for a strategy called the “Forrest Bounce” in which he jumped around the board, trying to confuse his opponents, hunting for the Daily Doubles. Our current champion has employed this same tactic, although thanks to Twitter, we now know it’s not very popular with many fans.


Jim Scott JeopardyJim Scott was the youngest TOC champion, winning the 1991 tournament at the age of 22. He lost to Jerome Vered, another 1980s contender and the third-place finisher in the UTOC, in that tournament’s first round. He didn’t look very strong there, so we’ll have to see if he’s changed his strategy for this tournament.


Prediction: Chuck and India get in a gunfight, with Jim in distant third heading into Final. He could play spoiler if Chuck is in second (Chuck would likely wager everything in such a situation, given his history).


India Cooper


India was locked out of her TOC semifinal and had a lock in UTOC Round 1.

Game 5 (12/20/91)

India Kurt Bruce
6,600 6,400 1,500

Proper wager: 6,200
Alternate wager: 3,200 (Shore’s Conjecture)
Actual wager: 6,500
Verdict: a little much, but a last chance to grab some cash before retiring.

Million Dollar Masters semifinal (05/09/02)

Leslie F* Brad* India
20,400 19,600 3,800

Proper wager: 0 – 2,199
Actual wager: 0
Verdict: tough game; made the best of Final.

UTOC Round 2 (04/14/05)

Steve Scott India
13,400 10,800 6,600

Proper wager: 6,600 (must wager at least 1,600)
Actual wager: 6,600
Verdict: nice!

Chuck Forrest


Chuck dominated his first four games, and held locks in his opening two TOC matches.

Game 5 (10/04/85)

Chuck Susan Linda
12,800 6,400 1,400

Proper wager: 0
Actual wager: 0
Verdict: a lock-tie situation in his final game; Susan held back a dollar!

Million Dollar Masters semifinal (05/10/02)

Bob V* Chuck Claudia*
12,400 10,600 9,400

Proper wager: 10,600 (should wager at least 8,201)
Actual wager: 10,600
Verdict: Chuck can lock out Claudia with a wager of 8,201, but he’ll fall below Bob if both gentlemen get it wrong. (This is known as Stratton’s Dilemma.) Therefore, he might as well go all in.

UTOC Round 2 (05/05/05)

Lara Phil Chuck
20,700 14,200 12,800

Proper wager: 12,800 (must wager at least 200)
Actual wager: 12,800
Verdict: maximizing potential returns.

Super Jeopardy! quarterfinal (08/11/90)

Dave Chuck Ron Yael
20,000 11,600 10,450 10,400

(That’s right, four players.)

Proper wager: 11,600 (should wager at least 9,301)
Actual wager: 9,301
Verdict: the bare minimum.

Jim Scott

Game 5 (10/01/90)

Jim David Mark
4,100 2,300 1,800

Proper wager: 500
Actual wager: 500
Verdict: in his final game, Jim hands David a co-championship.

TOC semifinal (11/11/91)

Leslie F* Jim Mark
6,900 6,200 5,300

Proper wager: 4,401 – 4,800
Actual wager: 4,450
Verdict: well played, sir.

UTOC Round 1 (02/28/05)

Jerome* Michelle Jim
21,500 13,800 7,200

Proper wager: irrelevant
Actual wager: 7,200
Verdict: Jim can’t win this one if Jerome wagers properly, but he gave himself the best chance he had.Jeopardy 1980s game 1 matchup

One Comment
  1. Congrats on picking the exact outcome.

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