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Could Matt Lauer be in the running to replace Alex Trebek on Jeopardy! once the legendary game show host retires? That’s what one report from the New York Post suggests.
The Post, citing anonymous sources, reported Friday that the embattled Today Show host is being considered by Sony Pictures Television as a replacement for Trebek, whose contract runs out in 2015. That’s around the same time that Lauer’s three-year contract with NBC runs out. Trebek, who will be 76 that year, is expected to retire and Lauer isn’t expected to return to Today.
The report also suggests that Sony’s other candidate is replacing Trebek with another silver-haired TV star: Anderson Cooper. But, if Lauer is suddenly available, then the studio will go after him.
Even if Lauer returns to Today, it's important to remember that Meredith Vieira hosted both Today and Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? for five years, so he could still be in the running for Jeopardy!.
A source close to Cooper told the Post that the CNN host “likes the idea.” He does have game show hosting experience, since he did ABC’s The Mole before joining CNN.
Lauer and NBC have been fighting a bad public image since Ann Curry left last year and are trying to turn that around. He recently gave an interview admitting that the ordeal wasn’t handled well.