April 24, 2014

Powerball hopes run high

Many Wisconsinites are likely looking to cash in on tonight’s record Powerball jackpot, but at least one expert is urging them to keep their expectations in check.

Wednesday night’s drawing for the Powerball is expected to be worth at least $500 million. While the possibility of winning over a half a billion dollars is appealing, Rose Gruber with the Wisconsin Council on Problem Gambling says the odds of winning are so far against you that people need to be wary of spending more than you can afford to lose.

Gruber says the lottery should be for fun, and urges people to avoid borrowing from money used to pay bills or buy groceries. She says it’s ok to buy a couple of tickets for fun and there’s a chance someone will win, but people just need to be cautious.

The odds of winning tonight’s jackpot are about one in 175 million. Gruber says there’s very little chance anyone could buy enough tickets to improve those odds significantly, so you’re “just as good with one ticket as you are with fifty.”

Meanwhile, a southern Wisconsin man has already won his big Powerball prize in time for the holidays. Roger Cobb of Darien cashed in a million dollar ticket Monday from the drawing on Saturday night. He matched all the number except the Powerball to win the game’s second prize. After taxes, Cobb is getting a check for $672,000.

AUDIO: Andrew Beckett reports (1:00)