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University Challenge star backs Louis Theroux or Richard Osman to host

Former competitor Bobby Seagull has given his verdict on who should replace Jeremy Paxman.

Published: Wednesday, 17th August 2022 at 5:42 pm
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With Jeremy Paxman stepping down from University Challenge after 28 years in the post, fans have suggested various broadcasters that could replace him – and now former contestant Bobby Seagull has put forward his top picks for the next host.


Speaking to in an exclusive interview, Seagull revealed that he's backing either House of Games presenter Richard Osman or documentarian Louis Theroux to become the next University Challenge presenter.

"So my dream would have been Richard Osman. He's got that wit but I think he can be stern," Seagull explained.

"He's obviously done Pointless and House of Games, but I think with Richard Osman, I suspect he might be just super busy, writing his books and the books being converted into films."

Bobby Seagull on Would I Lie to You?
Bobby Seagull on Would I Lie to You? BBC/Zeppotron, an Endemol Shine Company/Brian J Ritchie

While Osman would be Seagull's "ideal choice", he also suggested Louis Theroux as a replacement for Paxman.

"Outside of him, Louis Theroux did about six to nine months ago put his name in the hat," he added.

"No one's talking about him now but he did say that he would have wanted to be a potential host and now it's time."

Theroux, who is best known for fronting docuseries such as Louis Theroux's Weird Weekends, told The Times back in February that it would be "fun" to present University Challenge, adding that he hopes to "be around more" in the UK.

Seagull took part in University Challenge back in 2017, captaining the University of Cambridge's Emmanuel College team and reaching the semi-finals.

He has since hosted Monkman & Seagull's Genius Guide to Britain and appeared on E4's The Real Dirty Dancing.

Read more: Samira Ahmed 'hasn't been approached' for University Challenge job

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