Today’s Final Jeopardy – Monday, September 28, 2020


Here’s today’s Final Jeopardy (in the category On the Old Map) for Monday, September 28, 2020 (Season 37, Game 11):

On the U.N. website’s map of the world in 1945, these 2 initials of a member state appear 13 times on continental Africa

(correct response beneath the contestants)

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Today’s contestants:

Eric Aiese, a media researcher from North Hollywood, California
Eric Aiese on Jeopardy!
Paula Spence, an art director & designer for TV animation from Altadena, California
Paula Spence on Jeopardy!
Sameer Gandhi, a writer from Pasadena, California (2-day total: $37,400)
Sameer Gandhi on Jeopardy!

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Correct response: What is U.K.?


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More information about Final Jeopardy:

For the third time in 11 episodes, we appear to have a problem with Final Jeopardy.

You can find the 1945 map of the world on the U.N. website here. I looked at this map this morning here at The Jeopardy! Fan, and I count 17, not 13, instances of U.K. in continental Africa. Obviously, it’s the “correct” answer, as nothing else comes close to 13, but on the map, you can find that U.K. appears with Gambia, Sierra Leone, Libya (shared with France per the map), Gold Coast, Togoland, Nigeria, Cameroons, Eritrea, Uganda, Kenya, Tanganyika, North Rhodesia, South Rhodesia, Nyasaland, Bechuanaland, Swaziland, and Basutoland; this doesn’t even count British Somaliland, which doesn’t have the initials beside it. (I’m also hoping that by mentioning the name of the site, it’ll be very obvious when my content is stolen wholesale by others without them actually reading what’s here). However, while the British Empire was already starting to set by 1945, with many of its colonial possessions already having declared independence, it still had quite a colonial hold in Africa at that point. Most of Africa did not receive independence until the 1960s.

Matt Carberry floated last week that the issue may be related to the writers having to work remotely due to COVID-19, and the more I see things, the more I am tempted to agree with him. The writers have often talked about how important the collaborative process is to writing and fact-checking. This appears to have been another mistake that seems to have slipped through the cracks that would have been caught had all of the writers been in the same place. Again, though, this isn’t going to be good for the confidence of contestants going forward, if there are going to be mistakes such as this one in the clues.

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Looking to find out who won Jeopardy! today? Tonight’s results are below!

Scores going into Final:
Eric $19,200
Sameer $11,000
Paula $9,600


Tonight’s results:
Paula $9,600 – $9,597 = $3 (What is G.B.?)
Sameer $11,000 – $11,000 = $0 (What is C.W.)
Eric $19,200 – $2,801 = $16,399 (What is NL?) (1-day total: $16,399)


Eric Aiese, today's Jeopardy! winner (for the September 28, 2020 game.)


Scores after the Jeopardy! Round:
Sameer $5,400
Eric $3,400
Paula $1,200


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Opening break taken after: 15 clues


Daily Double locations:
1) COLLEGES & UNIVERSITIES $600 (clue #13)
Sameer 1200 +1000 (Paula 2200 Eric 800)
2) OLYMPIC SITES $1600 (clue #19)
Sameer 7400 +2000 (Paula 4400 Eric 11000)
3) TERMS FROM ISLAM $800 (clue #27)
Eric 15000 +3000 (Sameer 9000 Paula 8000)
Overall Daily Double Efficiency for this game: 130


Unplayed clues:
J! Round: THE JEFFERSONS $200 $800 $1000
DJ! Round: None!
Total Left On Board: $2,000
Number of clues left unrevealed this season: 29 (2.64 per episode average), 1 Daily Double


Game Stats:
Eric $17,000 Coryat, 21 correct, 2 incorrect, 38.89% in first on buzzer (21/54), 1/1 on rebound attempts (on 4 rebound opportunities)
Paula $9,600 Coryat, 14 correct, 2 incorrect, 27.78% in first on buzzer (15/54), 1/1 on rebound attempts (on 4 rebound opportunities)
Sameer $10,200 Coryat, 14 correct, 2 incorrect, 24.07% in first on buzzer (13/54), 1/1 on rebound attempts (on 4 rebound opportunities)
Combined Coryat Score: $36,800
Lach Trash: $8,400 (on 8 Triple Stumpers)
Coryat lost to incorrect responses (less double-correct responses): $6,800

Sameer Gandhi, career statistics:
43 correct, 9 incorrect
4/5 on rebound attempts (on 13 rebound opportunities)
25.15% in first on buzzer (41/163)
3/3 on Daily Doubles (Net Earned: $5,000)
1/3 in Final Jeopardy
Average Coryat: $12,200

Paula Spence, career statistics:
14 correct, 3 incorrect
1/1 on rebound attempts (on 4 rebound opportunities)
27.78% in first on buzzer (15/54)
0/0 on Daily Doubles
0/1 in Final Jeopardy
Average Coryat: $9,600

Eric Aiese, career statistics:
21 correct, 3 incorrect
1/1 on rebound attempts (on 4 rebound opportunities)
38.89% in first on buzzer (21/54)
1/1 on Daily Doubles (Net Earned: $3,000)
0/1 in Final Jeopardy
Average Coryat: $17,000

Eric Aiese, to win:
2 games: 60.705%
3: 36.850%
4: 22.370%
5: 13.579%
6: 8.243%
Avg. streak: 2.545 games.

Andy’s Thoughts:

  • As this is always a point of confusion among viewers: Eric’s score was deducted $1,600 on the COLLEGES & UNIVERSITIES $800 clue because you need to deduct $1,600 in order to go from +$800 to -$800 (correct to incorrect.)
  • It would be helpful if, when Alex says “We’ll accept that” (like on RESTAURANT RHYME TIME $2000), that he actually says what the writers intended the correct response to be.
  • As was mentioned above, because the Final Jeopardy! clue technically did not have a correct response, it would certainly be worth a protest by both of our nonwinning contestants.

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24 Comments on "Today’s Final Jeopardy – Monday, September 28, 2020"

  1. Andy, I wish this show would hire you as a writer if not fact checker for Final Jeopardy clues. Besides not being able to use a search engine, show writers now have a problem with counting. This is not encouraging.

  2. Idk…I feel like there could have been another country that appeared more times.

  3. I am shocked this was a triple stumper. Maybe a case of overthinking it? I thought UK immediately, but then pondered if it could be that obvious.

  4. Brian O'Leary | September 28, 2020 at 1:19 pm |

    Given the wording of the clue. It should be at least 17 times.

    Eritrea waa part of British Somaliland in 1945 and became part of Ethiopia when the British left.

    Tanganyika was a League of Nations Mandate Territory administered by the UK. It had formerly been German East Africa until the British drove the Germans out during WWI. The Germans also lost German South West Africa during WW I and it also became a League on Nations Mandate administered by South Africa.

  5. I fear that this may have been overly literal. If I counted correctly, there were 13 times the label U.K. appeared “on” continental Africa. Of these, 12 were African possessions and one was Palestine. I don’t think that helps the writers’ case at all. I think “over a dozen times” could have saved them though.

    • There would have been no questioning from this corner had the clue read “over a dozen”.

      • It does appear with one interpretation of the phrase “on continental Africa”, the initials “U.K” do appear exactly 13 times. But the clue as written is unnecessarily unclear at best, and actively misleading at worst. I don’t personally see sufficient grounds for accepting an appeal by the contestants, but I agree that the writers do need to do a better job of creating clues that remove any reasonable grounds for controversy.

        • If that is truly the case, then we have a third case of “the Mike Richards era being persnickety.

          • Yeah, the natural reading of “[which initials] appear 13 times on continental Africa” is “what is the two letter initialism of the country that controlled 13 colonies on continental Africa?” A 30 second high pressure situation is not the time to ask contestants to parse convolutedly written clues corresponding to the specific technicalities of an obscure map they don’t have access to.

            The real question beneath the clue is “which country had the most colonies on Africa in 1945?”, and there are far better clues that could have been formed to get at the same fact.

          • John McCleary | September 28, 2020 at 6:25 pm |

            Only the 3rd week of his shows and he’s already ran into this much contreversy. Yikes!!!!

  6. Gerald Harshman | September 28, 2020 at 5:58 pm |

    I understand that GB refers to Great Britain, but what were intended by C.W. & NL?

  7. We begin the week with a triple stumper. Like I said last week, nobody knows about geography.

  8. What was the answer to the question that was supposed to be “What is Colorado State”? Eric incorrectly said “What is Colorado”, but was later corrected by Alex.

    • “More than 1/3 of the courses at the Fort Collins main campus of this state school are sustainability related.”

  9. I also feel like “G.B.” being incorrect should be controversial. I understand that the map in question says “U.K.” and that Great Britain technically refers to the island. But the term Great Britain is often used synonymously with the UK. I feel like the question could have been worded better to avoid this confusion.

  10. I suppose one could argue that if UK appears 17 times, then it must also appear 13 times. In other words, the clue doesn’t say exactly 13 times.

  11. I do not see why “Colorado” was judged incorrect when the word “state” was already part of the clue.

    • It wasn’t the state they wanted, it was the school – Colorado State University (often referred to simply as “Colorado State”). Colorado, by itself, implies the University of Colorado.

      • My point is that the word “state” is already in the clue and one should not have to repeat a word that is already in the clue. I am not saying that Colorado State University and the University of Colorado are the same school.

  12. I agree that it was proper to reverse Eric’s response of “Colorado” to incorrect; I noticed that as soon as he gave the response. But along the same lines of the Final Jeopardy clues that have had issues so far this season, I think that clue was flawed.

    While “Fort Collins” sufficed to pin it to Colorado State University, I wonder if Alex made his initial ruling based on the principle that if a word appears in the clue (in this case, the word “state”), it need not be repeated in the response. Of course, for the reason other commenters noted above, it was absolutely necessary here to distinguish the correct response from the University of Colorado.

    Replacing “state school” with “public university” would take this problem out of the clue, but with the downside of not pointing the players toward giving a school with the name of a state, and it seems to me that was the TOM.

    At a minimum, it should have been indicated to Alex on the sheet he reads from that “Colorado” alone was not to be accepted. That would have gotten the initial ruling correct, and allowed Sameer and Paula an opportunity for a rebound.

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