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'Jeopardy' Contestant Fools Producers and Plays For Second Time

On Monday's episode of 'Jeopardy' we saw a familiar face on the gameshow, and it wasn't Alex Trebek.

It was contestant Jeff Kirby, who managed to try his hand at collecting some cash for a second time after producers dropped the ball.

And apparently it was as easy as auditioning for the show again, and simply promising he hadn't been on the show before.

Producers didn't realize he had been on 'Jeopardy' before until watchful viewers brought it to their attention later this week -- even though he used the same name, same profession, and even the same hometown in both appearances.

Kirby finished with a score of $300 and took home the third place prize of $1,000. The same placement he had in his first appearance nearly a decade ago on December 8, 1999. But to top it off, Jeff Kirby even wore the same tie both times!

"It has come to the Jeopardy! Producers' attention that Jeff Kirby, had previously appeared on the show," Sony, which produces the show, says in a statement.

"As is stated in the eligibility requirements, 'You are not eligible to be a contestant on Jeopardy! if you have appeared on any version of the show with Alex Trebek, except at the Jeopardy! Producers' express invitation.'"

"This is a long-standing rule, and it remains in place. Jeopardy! has a system to make sure that people who appear on the show have not previously done so. It has worked well for 26 seasons; however, clearly, that system failed to detect that Mr. Kirby had appeared on the show in 1999."

"In our contestant booking and verification process, we relied on information provided to us by Mr. Kirby. He did not disclose that he had previously been on Jeopardy!. His having been on the show before made Mr. Kirby ineligible as a contestant and therefore ineligible to receive any prizes from the show."

"Because Mr. Kirby came in third in the competition, this decision does not affect either of his opponents nor their winnings."

October 16, 2009 |

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