Former KU mascot wins big on Wheel of Fortune

Overland Park's Phil Bennett appears on Wheel of Fortune on November 28, 2017. (Courtesy: Wheel of Fortune)
By  | 

TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) — You may not recognize him with his bowtie instead of a giant Jayhawk head, but KU Big Jay mascot and Kansan Phil Bennett spun and won big bucks on Wheel of Fortune tonight.

The Overland Park game show contestant tried out during auditions at a Kansas City area hotel, and couldn't say much about when they flew to California to tape the show, or how much they won.

But the secret is out now. Phil breezed past the competition, winning just under $20,000 in his half-hour in the spotlight with Pat and Vanna.

Phil was not able to solve the bonus round puzzle, which carried a grand prize of $35,000.

During his chat with Pat Sajak, Bennett said he works as a fundraiser for fraternities and sororities, and talked about his days as the KU mascot, Big Jay, as well as giving a shout out to his wife, Stephanie, and their two pets, a dog and cat.

Phil's anxious father-in-law is Steve Waugh of Topeka, who also told us Phil has also pulled a stint for two seasons as one of the Royals Slugger mascots, too.

There's no word if the Bennetts have any special plans for their winnings.