Alex Trebek’s ‘Jeopardy!’ Host Pick Laura Coates Says She Was Snubbed By Producers (VIDEO)

Laura Coates at Sirius XM
Larry French/Getty Images for SiriusXM

CNN legal analyst Laura Coates, who the late Alex Trebek suggested as a potential Jeopardy! host should he retire, has said she was rejected by the show’s producers.

In a 2018 interview with TMZ‘s Harvey Levin for his show OBJECTified, Trebek was asked who he thought would make a good host should he eventually step aside. Trebek named the two people at the top of his list, one being L.A. Kings hockey announcer Alex Faust and the other being Coates.

“I actually was as shocked as anyone else was when he first said it,” Coates revealed on the January 17 episode of the Tamron Hall show. “I was thrilled when he said my name. I thought, ‘My God. This person that I have watched my whole life really, even knows my name let alone thinks that I would be worthy enough to fill his shoes, which frankly can’t be filled?'”

However, despite reaching out to producers, Coates never received a chance to audition when Jeopardy! began looking for a new host following Trebek’s death in November 2020.

“I asked for the opportunity when it came time, when they were looking for people to possibly fill in,” she explained. “I certainly raised my hand and knocked on doors and found them closed. I asked for the opportunity. I was told, ‘No.'”

After months of guest hosts, former Jeopardy! executive producer Mike Richards was named the permanent replacement in August 2021. However, Richards was removed from the position just weeks later after past controversies came to light, including a wrongful termination lawsuit and offensive comments made on a podcast.

The Big Bang Theory alum Mayim Bialik and former Jeopardy! contestant Ken Jennings share current hosting duties on the long-running game show. Bialik was originally named as host of Jeopardy! primetime specials and spinoffs.

Jeopardy!, Weeknights, Check local listings