Former poker player and now quiz show champion Alex Jacob has shown his abilities on the quiz show Jeopardy! On a couple of occasions. He is the 2015 Tournament of Champions victor – in which he took down a cool $250,000 (along with his $151,802 for originally winning on the show) – and was one of the leaders of the Team Tournament this year on the show. It seems that Jacob likes to keep his skills honed as, most recently, he targeted another online trivia show and came out a big winner.
Taking Down the HQ Jackpot
For a little over a year, the online trivia game HQ has been growing its audience by leaps and bounds. With this growth has come an increase in the prizes that the site gives away, loads of cash and sometimes even other prizes for their competitors. Literally hundreds of thousands of people come together online daily and battle it out for these prizes.
Of late, HQ has been awarding some of the biggest prizes in its existence. Called “Jackpot” games, the players have the option to resign from the game at a certain point – and are awarded a small cash prize for their efforts – or they can continue onward to reach a bigger prize. The prize on Monday night was $125,000 and the players had to answer 25 straight questions to be able to grab a piece of the pie.
At the end of the questions on Monday night, six players remained in the game and were awarded prizes of just over $20,000. While this wasn’t the largest prize ever given to a single player on the site (earlier this year a singular player earned a $100,000 payday), the $20K was a pretty nice chunk of change. But, since everyone in HQ uses on-screen nicknames, the winners weren’t known…unless you happened on a Twitter conversation later that evening.
Fellow Jeopardy Champion Outs Jacob
Jacob was asked over his Twitter feed by a fellow Jeopardy! Champion, Jackie Fuchs (also known to many as Jackie Fox, the former bassist for the groundbreaking 70s all-female band The Runaways), whether he was the one who had earned the prize on HQ. As you can see, Jacob was coy about the answer but then almost all but confirmed it:
Jacob has been very open about how his former life as a poker professional prepared him for the travails of Jeopardy! and, perhaps, dealing with the rapid-fire questions on HQ. “The most challenging aspect was probably just dealing mentally with the high stakes and the knowledge that I could win the tournament if I played well,” he stated to Variety after winning the Tournament of Champions in 2015. “The one thing I had going for me is that I’ve played for a lot of money on national TV before. The thing that makes ‘Jeopardy’ different than poker, though, is that there’s always another poker tournament, but you only get one Tournament of Champions.”
While Jacob has been notable for his performances in the trivia arena, his achievements arguably paled in comparison to another Jeopardy! alum and a Las Vegas denizen, sports bettor James Holzhauer. Holzhauer went on a 33-game run this summer on the popular syndicated show, earning $2,464,216. It was Holzhauer’s aggressive approach to the game that has had many people reexamining the strategies and philosophies of Jeopardy! and whether players with a little less concern for risk have an advantage on the program.
While many might not think $20,000 is all that much, in the world of HQ it is a sizeable chunk of money. Jacob has also shown that he’s still got the skills that carried him to the Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions victory. How long might it be until Jacob takes on Holzhauer – and, of course, other champions – in a solo match?