New College Alum Defends Jeopardy! Title Tonight

TV

BY PHILIP LEDERER SRQ DAILY MONDAY BUSINESS EDITION MONDAY FEB 27, 2017

Local Jeopardy! fans can cheer for one of their own tonight as Florida native and New College alum Kirstin Cutts returns to the program to defend her title. With a three-day total of $41,602, Cutts has defeated six contestants so far and faces two new challengers on tonight’s episode of the answer-and-question trivia show.

Currently attending grad school for arts education in Austin, Texas after graduating New College in 2013 with a degree in French and English literature, the decision to go on Jeopardy! was “kind of a whim” says Cutts, and last January, sitting in bed with a glass of wine, she took the online test and promptly forgot about it. What happened next, happened very quickly. An email in July turned into an audition in August turned into a flight to Los Angeles in October to be on national television.

Readying for the competition, Cutts shored up the weak spots, “absorbing” the Wikipedia pages for every president and rooting through J!-Archive, an online repository of every question ever asked on Jeopardy! and every answer given. But she already had a strong foundation, she says, and New College prepared her well. “It definitely made me confident in my decision to go to a liberal arts college,” she says.

With no runaway victories yet, Cutts says a big part of the preparation was learning to bet strategically. “I’ve been very cautious, very conservative,” she says. “I’d rather be right than rich.”

Cutts defends her title as champion tonight on Jeopardy! at 7:30pm.

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