A legal case assistant from San Diego, California...

Steven Milton

Stay classy, San Diego. I'm Steven Milton. Watch me surf past the competition on Jeopardy!

Season 26 2-time champion: $30,299 + $1,000.

Steve Milton
San Diego, CA

July 2, 2010

A Legal Case Assistant
From San Diego, California
...Steve Milton

I still can hardly believe it...I am a two-time Jeopardy! champion! It all feels surreal but I'll try to describe my thoughts below.

I truly did not expect to be an actual Jeopardy! champion. The most I was expecting was to place at least 2nd. I was going up against a very impressive champion in Janet Bradlow from New York. She had proved most capable in winning her three previous games (the last one being a locked game). I was a little intimidated but knew that I was going to give my all.

First off, I'd like to say that playing the game at home and playing in the studio are two entirely different things. The trick is not to get frustrated with how the buzzer actually functions. In my first game, I wasn't as quick to the buzzer when the game began but then I quickly began to dominate. This is just speculation, but I think that Janet knew many of the correct responses but I just happened to be quicker to the buzzer. Therein lies the key to winning the game: quickness on the buzzer. The audition process ensures that all participants have the knowledge to be a Jeoaprdy! champion. The only thing differentiating the contestants is speed on the buzzer.

My second game I won by sheer accident. I had a lead going into Final Jeopardy! but managed to screw up on a category I thought I knew pretty well: Russian Composers. Once upon a time I knew the answer to who wrote "Night on Bald (or Bear) Mountain" but at the time I drew a blank and simply wrote "Prokofiev" in my sloppy handwriting. I was lucky to win as the two other contestants managed to wager heavily along with myself. I just happened to have barely enough money to beat them. Jeff Gordon from Arkansas (no relation to the famous race car driver) could have bet minimally and beat me handily. I'm sure he was kicking himself afterward for that one.

Third time up, I was pretty exhausted and as a result slower on the buzzer. This showed as Dave Edwards (the eventual champion) overtook me by a significant margin. I knew most of the correct responses that he provided - he was just much quicker to the buzzer. There is not much rest time between show tapings and I think this affected my composure to a certain extent. Word to the wise: as a returning champion you are rushed between shows so this may put you off your game a bit. Be aware and try to prepare accordingly.

All in all, I have no regrets. I'm a two-time Jeopardy! champion and that puts me in pretty exclusive company. I am so grateful to Glenn Kagan and Maggie Speak, who allowed me to go on the show. They granted a dream come true that I will remember the rest of my days!

Steven appeared in the following 3 archived games:
#5954, aired 2010-07-01 Steven Milton vs. Kristina Glithero vs. Dave Edwards
#5953, aired 2010-06-30 Steven Milton vs. Jeff Gordon vs. Cara Colville
#5952, aired 2010-06-29 Janet Bradlow vs. Christopher Scheeren vs. Steven Milton

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