Thanks to the fan site J! Archive we know that since 1985 North Carolina has been mentioned on “Jeopardy!” in answers or questions at least 258 times. For instance…
1. “Hawk” Eyes for $1,200 (Feb. 9, 2011)
“This aircraft carrier named for a North Carolina site has been nicknamed ‘Battle Cat.’ ”
2. The CW for $1,000 (Nov. 10, 2009)
“Chad Michael Murray & Hilarie Burton might be gone, but North Carolina holds plenty of drama on this series.”
3. The Bible Belt for $1,000 (May 9, 2005)
“It’s Jerusalem to Isaiah, a peaceful ‘land’ to John Bunyan & small ‘ville’ in North Carolina.”
4. Stamps for an $1,800 daily double (Feb. 8, 2010)
“The Distinguished Marines series honors the man for whom a North Carolina Marine Corps base was named.”
1. What is the USS Kitty Hawk?
2. What is “One Tree Hill”?
3. What is Beulah? [The Duplin County town is spelled “Beulaville.”]
4. Who is John Lejeune?
When contestant Nick ventures “Who is… MacArthur?” Alex Trebek responds, “No. Who is Lt. Gen. John Lejeune, hence Lejeune Camp.”
“Lejeune Camp”? Alex, we’re consulting the judges on that one.
7 thoughts on “Putting North Carolina in “Jeopardy!””
Lew your mentioning North Carolina’s relationship with the TV game show “Jeopardy” brought to mind another TV game show and another North Carolina tie-in. This one, more of an aside rather than part of the actual game.
UNC broadcaster Woody Durham told this story during a gathering of Tar Heel alumni and friends in Charlotte in April 1984.
Woody was in Atlanta covering Dean Smith’s 1984 Tar Heels in the NCAA tournament. He was in his hotel room preparing for that night’s radio broadcast. “The TV set was on but the sound was turned down real low and I wasn’t paying any attention to it,” said Durham. “Then something caught my attention. The CBS program ‘The Price is Right’ host Bob Barker had introduced a contestant from North Carolina.” Then Barker said, “who was the great All America football player from North Carolina back in the 1940s?” Immediately someone in the audience shouted out Choo Choo. “That’s right,” said Barker, “Choo Choo Charlie Justice.”
Fast forward nine years…1993…same TV show, same host, same question from Barker when a North Carolina contestant was introduced. Same result. Although it had been 43 years since he played his final varsity game for Carolina, someone in the audience immediately knew Charlie Justice.
The nostalgia bias suggested by Dan B (previously in the comments queue) doesn’t seem to extend to “Jeopardy!”
Mentions of Charlie Justice: 0
Mentions of Michael Jordan: 78
Michael Jordan is arguably the greatest basketball player to ever play the game. His biography on the NBA website states: “By acclamation, Michael Jordan is the greatest basketball player of all time.” His resume is like no other:
An NCAA Championship
6 NBA Championships
5 MVP Awards
10 All-Pro NBA First Teams
10 NBA Scoring Titles
14 NBA All-Star Appearances
The list could go on.
Jordan was one of the most effectively marketed athletes of all time, and thanks to the emergence of the 24/7 cable sports channels, and in the latter part of his playing career, the internet, Jordan’s heroics became all access, all the time. His image has been on the cover of “Sports Illustrated” 57 times. (So far). So it’s no surprise that he has 78 mentions on “Jeopardy.”
In the fall of 1999, the UNC campus newspaper, “The Daily Tar Heel” set out to select the Greatest in UNC sports history. And as expected, Michael Jordan beat out Phil Ford, Lawrence Taylor, Mia Hamm, and Lenny Rosenbluth. In fact, Jordan beat out every other athlete from the University…except one. He finished second to Charlie Justice.
And when Justice played, Nike was still an obscure Greek goddess. (Nike didnt exactly “invent” Jordan, but neither did Edison have to invent electricity.)
Lew, an article in “The Washington Post” last week reminded me of your post and my comment from February 16, 2011.
One of our contemporary markers of fame, like having a sandwich or a sneaker named after you…. Thanks Jack….
…or a slice of pie.
In 1956 when Coach Jim Tatum arrived on the scene in Chapel Hill as the new head football coach, you could go downtown and get a slice of “sweet Tatum pie” at one of Chapel Hill’s famous restaurants.