'Jeopardy!' Superstar James Holzhauer Returns to Win Tournament of Champions

James Holzhauer on Friday defeated Emma Boettcher and Francois Barcomb to win Jeopardy!’s Tournament of Champions.

Boettcher, who knocked Holzhauer out of regular play in June, took second and the $100,000 prize, while Barcomb took third at $50,000.

“I’ve said all along that Emma is an all-time great player, and I’m proud it took that level of competitor to defeat me,” Holzhauer said. “Now the world sees that I wasn’t just making excuses. Francois certainly looked as dominant as either of us in his first two games, so I knew the finals would be a fight to the finish. But the whole point of the TOC is to play the best of the best, and Emma and Francois certainly proved that they belonged in the final three.”

Related: Jason Zuffranieri Ends His 19-Game Run on Jeopardy!

The $250,000 win brings Holzhauer to $2,712,216 in total winnings, which puts him behind only Brad Rutter, who has won a total of $4,688,436 and is the highest-winning game-show contestant of all time; and Ken Jennings, who is the consecutive wins record-holder at 74 and who has racked up a total of $3,370,700 over his years of playing Jeopardy!.

Jeopardy!, which is currently the highest-rated game show in syndication, is in its 36th year on the air. Alex Trebek is host and Harry Friedman is executive producer. Sony Pictures Television produces, while CBS Television Distribution distributes the show in national syndication. 

Paige Albiniak

Contributing editor Paige Albiniak has been covering the business of television for nearly 25 years. She is a longtime contributor to Next TV, Broadcasting + Cable and Multichannel News. She concurrently serves as editorial director for entertainment marketing association Promax. She has written for such publications as TVNewsCheck, The New York Post, Variety, CBS Watch and more. Albiniak was B+C’s Los Angeles bureau chief from September 2002 to 2004, and an associate editor covering Congress and lobbying for the magazine in Washington, D.C., from January 1997-September 2002.