# What's the most money possible to win in one day on Jeopardy? (math needed)

I think it’s -58,000. The total value of all the questions on the board is 54,000. But you could hit the daily doubles on first row questions, bet the max, and get them wrong, for an extra 4,000 dollar loss.

Of course, for this to happen, you’d have to get every question wrong and maintain possession of the board, which means the other contestants can’t get anything right either, at least until you’ve hit all the daily doubles. And, you’d need to be the returning champ to start off with possession of the board.

-58,000, you’re right. I thought I had put the DD bets back in my other number but hadn’t.

Too bad he didn’t go for the obvious and call it the “Forrest Jump”, but I think his appearance on the show predates the movie.

Since nobody has discussed why sometimes the contestants shoot for the higher amounts first, my theory is that they want to bag the most money they can get and not waste time on the lower amounts, so that if the round ends before all clues are revealed there won’t be a lot of unclaimed high potential dollar amounts left over.

You don’t need possession, but you do need to ring in first each time.

For example:
Defending Champion: “I’ll take Birds for \$100”
Alex: “This bird is the symbol for the US.”
You (ring in): “What is the piranha?”

However, you won’t get a shot at either of the Daily Doubles, since that does go to whoever has possession.

So the figure would be -\$8900 for the first board (assuming the Daily Double was at \$100) and -\$17,600 on the second board (again, assuming the Daily Double was at \$200 each time), making -\$26,500 the theoretical minimum.

You could get the DD’s on the second round pretty easily since the person with the lowest score goes first. You would just need to pick the DD’s on your first two turns.

Or, alternately, every question you pick is answered incorrectly (or not answered at all). You would retain possession until somebody took it by answering a question correctly.

Because of this, the lowest possible score goes up considerably. If you are the returning champion and neither of your opponents ever answer a question correctly, and you get the lowest total after the first round giving you first pick in the second, and all the daily doubles are in the top row, I figure you could rack up -\$58,000 (with the newer \$200-\$1000, \$400-\$2000 board values).

You would not, of course, be invited to participate in Final Jeopardy. Under these conditions, actually, nobody would.

And it seems I missed post #21, which says the same thing.