CLEVELAND — Editor's note: Video in the player above was originally published in a previous Mega Millions story on July 27, 2022.
Feeling lucky? You could be just six numbers away from becoming a billionaire!
The Mega Millions jackpot now stands at $1.28 billion for the next drawing on Friday, July 29 -- and the top prize money could grow even more before the numbers are officially pulled at 11 p.m.
The jackpot swelled above $1 billion earlier this week -- marking the third-largest lottery prize of all time -- after nobody matched all five numbers with the Mega Ball during Tuesday night’s drawing. Ohio had two big winners, though, with tickets worth $3 million and $1 million.
Looking back, Ohio has actually hit a handful of Mega Millions jackpots since the game first began in the state more than 20 years ago. Below are some important dates that highlight big moments in the history of Mega Millions in the Buckeye State as outlined by the Ohio Lottery...
- May 15, 2002: Ohio sells its first Mega Millions ticket.
- May 17, 2002: First Mega Millions drawing in Ohio.
- Dec. 30, 2003: Ohio crowns its first Mega Millions jackpot winner as Rebecca Jemison of South Euclid wins $162 million.
- March 2, 2004: The second Mega Millions jackpot winner from Ohio – Eric Maxwell of Dayton – hits $20 million.
- Jan. 15, 2011: Megaplier is introduced to the Mega Millions game, which offers winners the ability to enhance their potential prize money by betting $1 extra.
- Jan. 18, 2011: The first Mega Millions drawing with Megaplier in Ohio takes place.
- March 30, 2012: The Mega Millions jackpot sets a new world record at $656 million. Although that prize went to three winners in Illinois, Kansas and Maryland, the Ohio Lottery says 10 winners hit the second-tier prize worth $250,000.
- Oct. 23, 2017: Mega Millions hits a record-shattering jackpot of $1.537 billion with a $1 million winning ticket sold at Bee Gee’s Minit Market in Kettering. The epic jackpot was claimed by a winner in South Carolina.
- Dec. 17, 2019: A winning Mega Millions ticket worth $375 million is sold at a Giant Eagle store in Mentor. The unnamed winner chooses the cash option worth approximately $182.5 million.
- July 26, 2022: The Mega Millions jackpot hits $830 million, but nobody wins the top prize. Two winning tickets sold in Ohio, however, hit big money at $3 million and $1 million.
- July 29, 2022: Jackpot grows to $1.28 billion. Could the next big winner be you? If no winner is pulled in this drawing, the jackpot could approach record-breaking territory.
So what are the biggest Mega Millions jackpots of all time? Here's a list of the top 10 jackpots in the game's history and where the winning tickets were sold:
- $1.537 billion on Oct. 23, 2018: One winning ticket sold in South Carolina
- $1.28 billion on July 29, 2022: Awaiting the drawing
- $1.050 billion on Jan. 22, 2021: One winning ticket sold in Michigan
- $656 million on March 30, 2012: Three winning tickets sold in Illinois, Kansas and Maryland
- $648 million on Dec. 17, 2013: Two winning tickets sold in California and Georgia
- $543 million on July 24, 2018: One winning ticket sold in California
- $536 million on July 8, 2016: One winning ticket sold in Indiana
- $533 million on March 30, 2018: One winning ticket sold in New Jersey
- $522 million on June 7, 2019: One winning ticket sold in California
- $516 million on May 21, 2021: One winning ticket sold in Pennsylvania