"Million Second Quiz" Crowns $2.6M Winner

Recent law school grad Andrew Kravis took home the largest prize in game show history.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    Virginia Sherwood/NBC
    Andrew Kravis took the top prize on "Million Second Quiz."

    Quizmaster Andrew Kravis stole the show on the "Million Second Quiz" finale Thursday, besting his competitors to take home a $2.6 million grand prize on NBC's game show.

    Host Ryan Seacrest added an extra $300,000 to Kravis' $2.3 million haul to ensure the 25-year-old recent Columbia Law School graduate received the largest prize in game show history.

    The previous game show record was $2.52 million, according to NBC. It was set by Ken Jennings in 2004 during a 74-game "Jeopardy!" winning streak. 

    "Is this real?" Kravis asked after learning how much he'd won. He later told NBC that he hoped to pay off student loans with his winnings and possibly take a trip to Europe.

    But first he's "going right back to work" Monday at his new job, he said on the "Today" show. 

    Kravis, originally of Farmington Hills, Mich., had gone up against 19-year-old NYU student Brandon Saunders, of Queens, N.Y., in the final bout. Both competitors had remained on "winner's row" since the show kicked off on Sept. 9. They said they had become "best friends" during their 11-day endurance test as they weathered challenges from other hopefuls in the Money Chair. 

    They also have previous game show experience, Kravis on teen "Jeopardy!" and Saunders on "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?"

    There was no question in the final minutes of Thursday's broadcast that Kravis would win NBC's 24/7 trivia battle.

    Kravis notched a sizable lead with Saunders reduced to "doubling" in vain to try to boost his score before time ran out. Kravis repeatedly came up with the right answers, getting double the points on each question that Saunders bet would stump him.

    Saunders and the other remaining players on winner's row at the final buzzer didn't leave empty handed. They each took home what they had racked up in the Money Chair. Saunders notched $333,416. Devin Landin, of Yorktown Heights, N.Y., won $197,973. And "line-jumper" Kathy Frazer exited the show with $269,417 just one day after being flown to Manhattan from Los Angeles to appear on the show.

    Over 2 million people played more than 27 million games from home on the “MSQ” game app during the series' run, according to NBC.