What a way to start 2021! The second largest jackpot in Mega Millions history is up for grabs on Friday, January 15 – an estimated $750 million, or $550.6 million cash. The jackpot continues to roll after no ticket matched all six numbers drawn Tuesday night – the white balls 12, 14, 26, 28 and 33, plus the gold Mega Ball 9.
The current record Mega Millions jackpot is $1.537 billion won in South Carolina on October 23, 2018; it remains the world’s largest lotto prize awarded on a single ticket. As the excitement builds, Friday’s jackpot will likely vie for the honor of being the third largest lotto prize in American history, as two Powerball jackpots have been won in the same range – $768.4 million and $758.7 million. Powerball holds the world record for the largest lotto jackpot at $1.586 billion, shared by three winning tickets almost exactly five years ago.
Tuesday night’s drawing produced a total of 3,701,286 winning tickets at all prize levels, including nine tickets that matched the five white balls to win the game’s second prize. One, sold in Florida, is worth $2 million because it included the optional Megaplier (an extra $1 purchase available in most states); Tuesday’s Megaplier was 2X. An additional Florida ticket won the standard $1 million second prize; other states with second tier winners were California, Georgia, Illinois, Missouri, New Jersey, Texas and Washington.
For matching the four white balls plus the Mega Ball, 116 tickets won $10,000 each; 20 of those are actually worth $20,000 each because they also included the optional Megaplier.
Since the jackpot was last won in Wisconsin on September 15, there have been more than 25.5 million winning tickets sold at all prize levels, including 41 worth $1 million or more. Friday’s drawing will be the 35th in the current jackpot run, equaling the longest roll in the game’s history (a $536 million jackpot awarded in Indiana on July 8, 2016.)
The Mega Millions jackpot has been rolling since it was last won in Wisconsin on September 15. It was won five times in 2020, with two states getting their first-ever jackpot win in the game: Arizona, which took the largest prize of the year at $414 million on June 9, and Wisconsin, where a lucky winner won $120 million on September 15. Two 2020 jackpots were won in New Jersey: $202 million on February 11 and $123 million on July 24. And on July 31, a California winner took home a $22 million prize.
The top Mega Millions jackpots to date:
|$750 million (est)||1/15/2021||?|
|$656 million||3/30/2012||3-IL, KS, MD|
|$648 million||12/17/2013||2-CA, GA|