Okla. all in for Mega Millions jackpot

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OKLAHOMA CITY — Mega Millions fever is sweeping Oklahoma right now. The multi-state lottery played here at home has reached a record breaking $540 million for Friday’s drawing. The immediate cash payout would be $390 million.

Thursday, lottery officials showed us how to win cash during Mega Millions drawings every time.

Of the six Mega Millions numbers to pick, you are guaranteed to win money even if you only correctly pick the last “Mega Ball.”

Since there are only 46 Mega Ball numbers to choose from, all you have to do is buy 46 tickets and pick a different Mega Ball each time.

But how much could you win doing that?

“Oh, $3 bucks,” the Oklahoma Lottery Commission’s Interim Executive Director Rollo Redburn said. “You’re losing. You’re spending $46 bucks to win $3.”

However, Redburn said when it comes to winning the half-billion dollar Mega Millions jackpot, your odds of winning are only one in 175 million.

“But if you buy five of them (tickets), well now you’ve got five out of 175 million,” he said.

Still, Steve Bouska bought 10 tickets Thursday.

“I like (my chances) 10 times better than if I had just bought one,” he said.

“In the trends lately, a lot of groups have won,” Renee Jackson said. “So just on the spur of the moment this afternoon, we got a group together and came down to get some tickets.”

Some use their birth dates to help pick the numbers but there are skeptics.

“Nah, I just think it’s an act of God,” Demetrius Richardson said. “If He wants you to have it, He’ll let you have it.”

“I’ve actually heard a story about a guy who had a vision and he went out the next day, bought the numbers, and he won,” Redburn said.

But this much we do know.

For Powerball, 81 percent of all jackpot winners had the computer pick their numbers, which is called “easy pick.”

The luckiest Mega Millions states since 2010 are California with six jackpot winners, New York with six winners and Michigan with three.

Redburn said winning is just fate and if fate is on your side…

“You’re going to have more friends than you ever knew you had,” he said.

Officials say your chances of winning the jackpot are always the same no matter what numbers you pick or the jackpot size.

The Mega Millions drawing is Friday night at 10 p.m. CDT.

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