By Diana Nollen/ SourceMedia
Iowa City native Paul Nelson has done the seemingly impossible. He ended a six-episode run on “Jeopardy!” without answering correctly any Final Jeopardy question.
The key to his success? Conservative wagers. Even on his sixth and final try, he bet no money. He might have won yet again, except opponent Jake Ayers, a law student from San Diego, knew the final question in the popular TV game show where answers are given in the form of a question.
The final category was “Biographies About Authors,” and Oscar Wilde was the answer. Nelson, who has peppered his appearances with humor, wrote: “Who is Dolly Parton?” saying he just wanted to hear host Alex Trebek say that out loud.
Had Ayers missed the question, his wager of $9,301 would have landed him in second place. Instead, that where’s Nelson landed, adding $2,000 to his winnings, bringing his six-day total to $56,900.
Nelson, 23, is a legislative correspondent in Sen. Chuck Grassley’s Washington office. He is the son of Scott and Tracy Nelson of Iowa City.
Scott Nelson is more thrilled with his son’s conduct than with his earnings.
“Aside from Paul exercising his God-given abilities, we are proud of his character and how he presented himself in the national spotlight,” Nelson said. “He was the first competitor to step off the podium and congratulate the others.”