Robin Roberts Pays Tribute to Alex Trebek As She Becomes Latest 'Jeopardy!' Guest Host

Robin Roberts has paid tribute to beloved TV personality Alex Trebek as she gears up for her guest host stint on Jeopardy! to hit screens this week.

From Monday, Roberts will be seen taking over from fellow Good Morning America anchor George Stephanopoulos for a week-long stint, as producers of the quiz show search for a permanent replacement for Trebek, who died in November 2020 after battling cancer.

And Roberts said during an interview with Jeopardy! producers, per ABC News, that she hopes to "bring a little bit of Alex [Trebek], just a little bit" to screens in her episodes, which were pre-recorded in a single day.

"No one can be him, but I just want to bring a little of the spirit that he brought each and every time he was here in the studio," she said.

"What really touched me is one of the last times that I spoke with him in the studio at Good Morning America," she went on. "He came in and he was cutting jokes. He was making us all feel at ease, and I'll never forget that because everybody was on pins and needles and it was Alex Trebek making us feel so at ease."

Roberts, who is the first woman of color to helm the show, follows a long line of celebrities—including Katie Couric, Savannah Guthrie, Anderson Cooper, Mayim Bialik, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, and Aaron Rodgers—who have temporarily taken the reins.

In keeping with the tradition of other guest hosts, the makers of Jeopardy! will donate to a charity of Roberts' choice, which in this case is Be the Match, part of the National Marrow Donor Program.

Roberts was previously a contestant on Celebrity Jeopardy! in 1999, when she worked at ESPN. After she faced off against fellow sportscasters ​​Bob Costas and Keith Olbermann, Roberts lost after an incorrect guess about ice hockey during the Final Jeopardy! segment.

Speaking to Ellen DeGeneres in March—before she had been confirmed to guest host Jeopardy!—Roberts joked: "I knew I was not destined to be a guest host because I was on Celebrity Jeopardy! I was so bad as a guest, that I think that if I had been on the list, that anybody who remembers me from being on the celebrity show, they knew that."

She added: "I contest that it was the buzzer. That's my story and I'm sticking to it."

When Roberts interviewed Trebek in 2019, following his cancer diagnosis, the veteran Jeopardy! host told her: "After you've passed, after you're dead, people say: 'Oh, he was such a good guy, we really liked him. But I am getting all that before that event. It makes me feel really, really good."

After Roberts' run on Jeopardy! is over, she will be followed by LeVar Burton (July 26 to 30), David Faber (August 2 to 6) and sportscaster Joe Buck (August 9 to 13).

Jeopardy! executive producer and showrunner Mike Richards confirmed in May that a decision on the new host will be made before the next season of the syndicated show begins taping later this summer.

"You want to make an informed decision," Richards said on The Journal podcast. "We want to go at this with real analytics and real testing and not just go, 'Hey, how about this guy?' which is kind of how a lot of these decisions have been made historically."

Robin Roberts and "Jeopardy!" host Alex Trebek
Robin Roberts (L) has paid tribute to late "Jeopardy" host Alex Trebek (R) as she prepares for her week-long guest stint on the show to debut. Jason Merritt/Getty Images/Amanda Edwards/Getty Images