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Mega Millions jackpot leaps to roughly $750 million

CBS News logo CBS News 1/13/2021 Peter Martinez
calendar: Mega Millions lottery entry tickets are seen in New York © Brendan McDermid / REUTERS Mega Millions lottery entry tickets are seen in New York

Those feeling lucky had a chance to win an estimated $625 million jackpot in the Mega Millions lottery, the eighth-largest jackpot in U.S. history. The bounty reached those heights because there hadn't been a winner for months.

But there were no winning tickets for the numbers that were drawn late Tuesday night. So the estimated jackpot grew to $750 million, and will surely grow some more as people rush to gobble up tickets ahead of Friday night's drawing.

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A $750 million payout would be Mega Millions' second biggest, to a $1.54 billion bonanza won in 2018.

Each ticket costs $2 and winners must match all the numbers, including the Mega Ball, to take home the full sum.

The one-time cash option for Tuesday's jackpot was at least $458 million. Taking the jackpot's lump payment cash value is an option favored by most winners. Otherwise, the jackpot is doled out over 30 years.

Tuesday's Mega Millions winning numbers

  • 12, 14, 26, 28, 33
  • Mega Ball: 9
  • Megaplier: 2x

Mega Millions tickets are are sold in 44 states, Washington, D.C., and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Meanwhile, the Powerball lottery jackpot has swelled to an estimated $550 million, which is the game's 12th largest jackpot in history. Winning numbers will be drawn Wednesday night.

Even with both jackpots combined, they still pale in comparison to the largest prize, a $1.58 billion Powerball jackpot won by three players in 2016. The Mega Millions jackpot was last won in Wisconsin on September 15, 2020, when a single winner secured a ticket worth a $120 million prize. The game was won five times last year, with a June $414 million jackpot being the largest prize, according to officials.

The odds of winning a jackpot are slim at 1 in 302.5 million for Mega Millions and 1 in 292.2 million for Powerball.

The following are the 10 biggest Mega Millions jackpots ever, along with where the tickets were purchased:

  • $1.54 billion — one winning ticket in South Carolina (October 2018)
  • $656 million — three winning tickets in Illinois, Kansas and Maryland (March 2012)
  • $648 million — two winning tickets in California and Georgia (December 2013)
  • $615 million — unknown if there are winners (January 2021)
  • $543 million — one winning ticket in California (July 2018)
  • $536 million — one winning ticket in Indiana (July 2016)
  • $533 million — one winning ticket in New Jersey (March 2018)
  • $522 million — one winning ticket in California (June 2019)
  • $451 million — one winning ticket in Florida (January 2018)
  • $437 million — one winning ticket in New York (January 2019)

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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