The Mega Millions numbers drawn Tuesday produced no winner of the minimum $15 million jackpot, days after Friday's number turned up an improbable third jackpot winner in just six Mega Millions drawings.
The Mega Millions jackpot now begins another slow climb, inching up to $20 million for Friday's game. But how high will it reach this time? The odds-defying rapid succession of winners has kept the jackpot from reaching the stratospheric proportions that generate huge ticket sales numbers and nationwide lottery fever.
Last Friday, one Mega Millions player who bought a ticket at a Los Angeles gas station scored a $30 million jackpot. On March 25, a $20 million jackpot was given away and just one week earlier, Mega Millions awarded the seventh-largest jackpot in U.S. lottery history, $424 million, which was split between two winners.
That mega jackpot had been building since a $61 million Mega Millions prize was won on January 3, making four jackpot winners in the first four months of 2014.
Only one ticket in Tuesday night's drawing won the "Match 5" second prize, hitting the first five numbers but not the Mega Ball. That ticket, worth $1 million, was sold in New York. All told, 1,101,277 tickets out of 16,231,619 sold for Tuesday's drawing won some sort of prize, the majority of them just a single dollar — basically a free ticket.
Was yours one of those winners? Check your Mega Millions tickets against the following numbers, drawn at 10:59 pm in Atlanta, Georgia.
35 — 36 — 41 — 60 — 71 Mega Ball 3
The rapid-fire jackpot winners have not spurred ticket sales. The total sales for Tuesday's drawing was the lowest since the January 7 drawing which sold 16,048,728 Mega Millions tickets.
The three quick Mega Millions jackpot winners are made even more amazing considering that the chances of winning the Mega Millions lottery are exactly one in 258,890,000. It's amazing that anyone ever wins.
But compare those odds to the Ohio state lottery, whose Classic Lotto game has a chance of one in 13,983,816 of producing a winner. Sounds pretty good by comparison, right?
But in that game, there has been no jackpot winner for more than two years. The last time anyone won the Ohio Classic Lotto jackpot was December 7, 2011.
The jackpot for that game now stands at a record $66.2 million.
Of course, many fewer tickets are sold for the Ohio lottery, or any state lottery, compared to Mega Millions. But the Ohio Classic Lotto holds three drawings per week as opposed to two for Mega Millions, so it's puzzling why no one has won the jackpot in 28 months.