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October 31, 2014

The Final Wager – Friday, October 31, 2014

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We have a special guest tonight! Who could it be? (It’s cold, so a sweater is appropriate attire.)

In the video, our special guest, Julia Collins, shares the match-ups for the quarterfinals of next week’s TOC. (Don’t watch if you don’t want to see them.)

Ryan Alley: 18,000
Allison Solomon: 3,800
Tyler Johnson: 8,200

The Final Jeopardy! category: INVENTIONS

The strategy here is straightforward, and everyone did just fine. What’s far more interesting is Allison’s Penultimate Wager.

On the final clue of Double Jeopardy!, Allison received a Daily Double.

Ryan: 18,000
Allison: 6,800
Tyler: 8,200

The obvious wager is 2,200, pulling her into a lock-tie scenario with Ryan. (Ryan will wager zero, and Allison just needs to get it right and wager everything in Final.)

She wagered 3,000, however, which looks bad on the outside, but, making certain assumptions, might actually be a better wager. Had she responded correctly, she would have entered a first equals second plus third situation.

Overall, this has a higher expected value for cash winnings, assuming Ryan withholds the dollar in Final. (THIS LATTER POINT IS VERY IMPORTANT, OBVIOUSLY.)

  • If she’s right in Final, she’ll either win or tie with a total of $19,600.
  • If she’s wrong in Final, there’s a ~50% chance she’ll take the $2,000 second-place prize, because Tyler is also forced to wager everything.

That’s an expected value (EV) of $10,650 if she gets the Daily Double right.

Her EV if she goes for the lock-tie and gets the DD is $9,500. (If she’s wrong on the DD, there’s still a ~25% chance she’ll take second place; she’s out of luck with the larger wager.)

Of course, again, this all depends on Ryan’s recognition of the situation – and maybe that’s not something on which you want to rely.

The Penultimate Wager October 31, 2014

The Final Jeopardy! clue

INVENTIONS

THIS MACHINE WAS INVENTED IN 1929; THE GOVERNMENT BEGAN BUYING THEM TO HELP PREVENT ANY MORE ARMY AIR CORPS FATALITIES

Correct response: Show

 

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2 Comments
  1. Blake permalink

    I don’t get why you wager anything at all

What do you think?