As Texas players are buying their first tickets for Mega Millions, they're also sticking by Lotto Texas, the first big jackpot game in the Lone Star State.
"Sales are going great for the first drawing of Mega Millions with its $44 million jackpot on Friday," said Reagan E. Greer, Executive Director of the Texas Lottery Commission. "And sales for Lotto are good too as people see that $15 million jackpot for tonight's drawing. We're glad to see that Texas is big enough for both games."
As of 4:30 Wednesday afternoon, draw sales for Lotto Texas totaled more than $978,798. Wednesday's sales for Friday's Mega Millions jackpot totaled just over $627,984. Of that, $121,014 in sales was for the Megaplier, an add-on feature available only to Texas players that offers them the opportunity to double, triple or quadruple their non-grand/jackpot prizes.
That feature attracted the interest of one of the first ticket-buyers this morning, State Representative Talmadge Heflin, Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, who joined Greer at a news conference this morning to kick off sales of the new game.
"I am going to buy $5 worth of tickets and try the Megaplier on some of them, pick my own numbers on one, and do a Quick Pick, too," said Heflin. I know lottery customers have wanted to be able to play in a multi-state game, and now they can. I hope our Lottery players will be excited about playing the new game as well as the games we already have in place."
To play Mega Millions, players choose 5 numbers from 1 to 52, and one Mega Ball number from a second field of numbers from 1 to 52. Each play costs a dollar. Players must match the five numbers plus the Mega Ball to win the jackpot, which starts at $10 million and increases until it is won. To play the Megaplier feature, players pay an additional dollar. The Megaplier option does not apply to the jackpot but all other prizes that can be won.
"We've been saying, 'When you buy, megaply!' and it's great to see Representative Heflin do that," said Greer.
"The Megaplier number can be a two, three or four," explained Greer. "That means that when you win one of the non-grand/jackpot prizes, your prize is going to be doubled, at a minimum, if the number 2 is the Megaplier that night.
"For example, the prize for matching five balls but not the Mega Ball is $175,000. But for those players who bought the Megaplier and matched those five numbers, their non-jackpot prize is multiplied by the Megaplier, the number 2 in this example, so that player's prize is $350,000. We like to think of it as Texas-sizing your winnings."
State Representative Talmadge Heflin chooses his Mega Millions numbers for Friday's drawing, as TLC Executive Director Reagan E. Greer touts the $44 million jackpot.