A lot of you watch "Wheel of Fortune" every day right after NewsChannel 11 at Six, and soon you'll be seeing a lucky Texas Tech Red Raider spinning the wheel. Tryouts were held Wednesday here in Lubbock for Big 12 College Week.
It may be a far cry from the glitz and glam of one of TV's longest running game shows, but about 50 Texas Tech students couldn't care less. Stephanie Orr says, "Ever since I was little, I've always watched the Wheel of Fortune with my parents. My dad loves the show." Craig Nolan says, "We watch Wheel every day and it's always war. We started watching recently and we're in the Wheel Watchers Club.
The Wheel of Fortune hopefuls were trying for their chance at $100,000 and many other prizes, but they had to impress Contestant Executive, Gary O'Brien, and his crew first. O'Brien says, "We're trying to find students who are naturally enthusiastic and who are going to be good players under pressure." Tech grad student, Garrett Heath says, "You've got to be enthusiastic. This is your chance to be on the Wheel of Fortune, America's gameshow. I'm real excited about that."
After one round of showing the people in charge what they're made of, it's five minutes for a written puzzle solving test and then the field is narrowed to the 19 best to represent Texas Tech. Nate Wright says, "If they choose me, I'd be exstatic. If not, they chose someone better." Wright says if nothing else, he gets to walk away with his new Wheel of Fortune pencil! Amy Wooten calls the experience, "Incredible." She says, "I was extremely thrilled to get a chance to be here."
Students chosen to compete will be notified by mail in a couple of weeks. The "Big 12" show will be taped in Kansas City, Missouri on April 9th.