Who is replacing the late, great Alex Trebek as the new permanent host of “Jeopardy!”? The answer is about to be Mike Richards.
Variety reported on Wednesday night that Richards, the game show’s current executive producer, is in “advanced negotiations with Sony Pictures Television” to get the full-time job.
After a run of 16 guest hosts for Season 37, which started with former legendary contestant Ken Jennings in January and will end with Fox Sports’ Joe Buck next week, Richards is set to take over on a regular basis for when Season 38 kicks off on Sept. 13.
Richards had his own “audition” during the run, which was tied to matching the contestants’ winnings with charitable donations. He was second, following up Jennings in the lineup from Feb. 22 to March 5.
The announcement of Richards will come as a disappointment to many, as he gets the gig over three viewer favorites: Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, revered actor LeVar Burton and actor/neuroscientist Mayim Bialik. Rodgers, Burton and Buck were the most hopeful big names who wanted to be considered. There also was plenty of buzz over Jennings and another beloved former contestant, Buzzy Cohen, who hosted this year’s Tournament of Champions.
In the end, however, “Jeopardy!” stayed in house with its choice. Richards isn’t a household name, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t the right person to take over the game.