Wright State University senior Emily Bingham placed third in the Jeopardy College Tournament semifinals Tuesday night, ending her run on the television game show.
Bingham started the competition last week as one of 15 contestants from universities across the country competing for a grand prize of $100,000. Last week, Bingham placed first in her competition and moved on to the semifinal round.
“It has been a wonderful journey. Having your support makes this loss something I’m not worried about. I will remember this journey for the rest of my life,” Bingham told more than 50 family members, WSU alumni and staff gathered at the Fox & Hound near the university to watch the taped segment.
“It was one of the most incredible moments of my life,” the Northmont High graduate and Englewood resident said.
Susan Bingham, Emily’s mom, said she is proud of her daughter for all of her accomplishments at Wright State.
“It’s something she has always wanted to do, and she went out and got it,” Bingham’s mom said. “Wright State has been very good to her, and she has taken advantage of those opportunities.”
Sam Deutsch, a student at the University of Southern California, placed first in the competition with $18,201. Hannah Norem, a student at Augustana University, placed second with $18,200. Bingham came in third place with $9,101.
She led briefly after answering her Final Jeopardy question correctly, but her opponents did the same.
Deutsch will compete in the final round, which will air Friday.
“So excited to be here to watch Emily, she has been a great representative of Wright State. I’m thrilled for her experience,” said Debra Downing, alumni association president.
Jeopardy host Alex Trebek mentioned during the segment that Bingham had received a full-ride scholarship to Wright State. Last year Bingham traveled around the country to talk to alumni about her experiences at WSU.
“I got to speak to pockets of alumni. I traveled to Columbus, New York City, D.C. and Tampa Bay. I encouraged them to donate to the university,” Bingham said.
The marketing and literature major will graduate in the spring, and is preparing to hit the job market.
Bingham, who founded the Quiz Bowl team at Wright State, has been competing in trivia competitions since her days at Northmont. She’s wanted to compete on Jeopardy since middle school.
“The pressure was very intense. That was not what I was expecting,” she said. “It took me a long time to get used to the buzzer, the lights, the live studio audience, Alex Trebek being right there and my opponents.
“A lot of what I did on stage was trying to calm myself down. I tried to take a deep breathe before every question.”