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‘Jeopardy!’ whiz from Wilmette sets new record for second-most wins

Julia Collins won her 20th consecutive game on Friday’s episode of “Jeopardy!,” making her the second winningest player on the quiz show.

Collins, a Kenilworth native who now lives in Wilmette, tied Dave Madden’s long-standing record of 19 back-to-back victories on Thursday.

Her Friday win set a new benchmark for second place overall — and boosted Collins’ pile of cash to $428,100. That’s just shy of Madden’s $430,400 total winnings in regular, non-tournament games.

Look out, Ken Jennings.

Not really. Jennings’ standing as the player with the most consecutive wins — 74 — is safe. For now.

“Somebody could do it; I don’t think it’s impossible,” Collins said about Jennings’ unprecedented winning streak during a phone interview after Thursday’s broadcast. “It won’t be easy. I tied for second place [Thursday] and that’s still 55 games behind Ken Jennings.”

Collins said her line of wins gave her a new appreciation for Jennings’ fortitude. The show tapes five episodes a day, which translates into one very long day for both the brain and the body.

“It requires a lot more stamina than I anticipated,” said Collins, 31. “You’re pretty tired by the end of the day.”