Houston man remembers stint on 'Jeopardy!' in the 80s

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Three of the greatest 'Jeopardy!' contestants are battling it out to see who will win it all.

Will it be Ken Jennings, who won 74 games in a row? Will it be Brad Rutter, who's made more money than any other game show contestant in history? Or will it be "Jeopardy James" Holzhauer, who played for two electrifying months last year?

As the competition continues in a new primetime special, ABC13 caught up with the man who calls himself the first Houstonian to be on the show in the 80s.

READ MORE: 'Jeopardy!' primetime special to determine 'The Greatest of All Time'

As a former television reporter, Doug Miller has met presidents and participated in televised debates.

When the show was revived, its producers went looking for contestants in Houston. That's when Miller decided to give it a shot.

"I was nervous, but had to stay calm at the same time," recalled Miller, who now works for Rice University. "They tape for five shows a day. I won three and I lost on my fourth. I won $16,000, which seems like a lot of money, but Ken Jennings won that much before the first commercial break."

WATCH: ABC13's Melanie Lawson speaks with contestants of "Jeopardy!" primetime special
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Miller said a lot has changed. For one, the questions, back then, were worth half of what they are worth now.

"Now, people strategize," he said. "Now, there are sites dedicated to play Jeopardy. At the time, all I had was me and my video cassette pause button to try to practice on, but that alone gave me an advantage."

After watching the show for decades, the person who has truly left a lasting impression is the show's host, Alex Trebek.

"It's touching to see how much people care about him," said Miller.

If you ask Miller who is the greatest of all time on the show, his answer is simple.

"Alex Trebek," said Miller. "That's the man everybody is watching, and that's the man everyone is going to remember."

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