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November 11, 2014

2014 TOC preview: Quarterfinal #3

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The previews are a spoiler-free space, so I won’t make any references to Tuesday’s game, and to whether the “dream” Arthur-Julia match-up is even still possible. (Of course, if you want, you can check out my analysis of Tuesday’s game.)

Chu or not, Julia Collins still wants to win this thing. To claim the automatic semifinal berth, she’ll need to contend with five-timer Joshua Brakhage and my fellow College Champion Jim Coury.

Julia Joshua Jim

A few choice wagers to discuss before this game.

Julia Collins

20 wins, $428,100

Julia Collins Alex Trebek

Julia is now a good friend of mine, and has appeared in a few videos, including an amusing interview over the summer. In fact, the only reason we met in the first place was because she took some offense at my analysis of Game 8… then recognized me on the street the following weekend.

Julia led in each of her first 20 games, in 12 cases with locks. In almost every other situation, she wagered to win by $100 rather than the typical $1…

(Complete list on The Final Wager and J! Archive)

Game 1 (April 21, 2014)

Frédérique Julia Kris
7,800 8,000 5,200
7,300 7,605 1,000
15,100 15,605 4,200

…except in her first game, when for some reason she selected $5 as her margin. Note that she was $200 away from losing this game, assuming a lockout wager by Frédérique (who, by the way, beat another TOCer, Sandie Baker).

Game 3 (April 23, 2014)

Julia Zia Brad
12,300 8,200 7,800
4,200 7,400 7,700
16,500 800 100

This is technically a wager-to-tie situation, as Zia has exactly 2/3 of Julia’s score. Brad more or less forces the big wager, however.

Game 8 (April 30, 2014)

Julia Mallory John
21,200 7,800 8,400
4,500 7,000 7,201
25,700 14,800 15,601

The famous Clavin game, which forced me to create a new “grade” for wagers – gray on black.

Game 21 (June 2, 2014)

Julia Debra Brian
11,000 5,200 12,600
11,000 0 10,000
0 5,200 22,600

In her final match, Julia went big – and went home. She – er, Hugh Downs – explained her policy that led to this move: “If you’re not first, you’re last.”

Joshua Brakhage

5 wins, $103,205

Joshua Brakhage Alex Trebek

At taping, I actually hadn’t seen any of Joshua’s original games; I tuned in for Colby Burnett’s Tournament of Champions, but missed his appearances, which sandwiched that event. At 21 months, Joshua’s wait was the longest of any competitor in this year’s TOC.

Joshua had a lock in his opening match, but things got pretty wild from there. You might notice, however, that a particular pattern emerges toward the end – could it be due to his employment as a producer at News On 6 (KOTV, Tulsa)?

(Complete list of games on J! Archive)

Game 2 (January 24, 2013)

Joshua Zora Waymond
10,000 16,000 5,200
10,000 4,100 5,200
20,000 11,900 10,400

Proper all-in wager, since he had less than 2/3 of Zora’s score.

Game 3 (January 25, 2013)

Joshua Lauren Sean
14,600 9,800 7,600
5,001 9,799 2,000
9,599 1 5,600

He might have regretted that extra dollar!

Game 4 (January 28, 2013)

Joshua Heather Kristin
22,000 20,000 5,200
1,994 2,001 4,100
20,006 17,999 1,100

Now this is some savvy wagering! Perhaps I should start referring to “Colbyesque” wagers as “Brakhagesque” instead. It rolls off the tongue quite nicely, I’d say.

This is why the trailer should always cover the “unsafe” wager if possible – Heather would have lost had they both gotten it right.

Game 5 (January 29, 2013)

Joshua Allison Robert
16,800 20,800 8,000
16,794 3,500 7,500
33,594 17,300 500

Allison tried to pull a fast one on Joshua here, too, but he wasn’t having it.

This is a weak wager-to-tie situation; Robert could just stand pat and beat Allison by a dollar if she goes for the straight lockout, so Joshua should have wagered between 8,000 and 8,800, or gone for everything.

Game 6 (February 27, 2013)

Joshua Sara Hans
7,200 15,000 12,800
7,194 10,601 2,201
6 25,601 10,599

Joshua could have gone small hoping the others would both miss and wager large, but he correctly predicted Hans’s small bet.

Jim Coury

2013 College Champion, $100,000

Jim Coury Alex Trebek

Jim was a sophomore at Georgetown University when he won the 2013 College Championship. He and Terry O’Shea both had to miss a week of school to fly out from the east coast for this tournament; I’m sure he has no complaints, though.

His semifinal game was particularly impressive; he amassed a total of 32,600 heading into Final – just barely enough for a lock – on the strength of two huge Daily Doubles in Double Jeopardy! (7,200 on clue 4 and 9,800 on clue 18).

(Complete list of games on J! Archive)

Quarterfinals (May 7, 2013)

Jim Daniel Kristen
14,800 15,400 11,000
5,201 1,400 8,000
20,001 14,000 19,000

Jim clearly came in with a wild-card target in mind. Will he have one on Wednesday? Will he even need one on Wednesday?

Both of his opponents would claim wild cards; Kristen would finish in third, and Daniel was one correct response away from making the Finals a rematch of this Quarterfinal game.

One Comment
  1. Blake permalink

    Actually in julia collins first game kris wagered 3000 the j archive was wrong

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