9:48 AM EST, November 26, 2012
Powerball fever is sweeping the USA!
The lottery jackpot is now a mind-blowing $425 million, and will climb even higher as people coast-to-coast in 44 states scramble to buy tickets for this historic drawing.
The Powerball drawing takes place this Wednesday. The odds of winning are an astronomical 1 in 175 million. But there is one guy who says you can narrow those odds, and he should know. He's won the lottery seven times.
Richard Lustig has won millions of dollars by using a system he details in his book: Learn How to Increase Your Chances of Winning the Lottery.
Lustig said, "Luck has nothing to do with it."
INSIDE EDITION's Paul Boyd asked, "What is your No. 1 piece of advice to those who are heading out to buy a Powerball ticket tonight?"
"Set a budget. Don't get what's called, "lottery fever." Do not spend grocery money. Do not spend rent money," said Lustig.
Other tips: Don't pick all odd numbers or all even numbers. Don't play patterns or diagonals on your lottery card, it decreases your odds of winning. And do your research to make sure your set of numbers haven't been drawn before. If they were, odds are they won't come up again.
"There's only been, like maybe, at least what we can find, maybe only a half-a-dozen times that the same exact set of numbers came up a second time. So, you don't want to play a set of numbers that's come up before," said Lustig.
The Powerball jackpot is the second staggering lottery prize this year.
Remember the retired couple back in April, who claimed a share of the world-record $656 million Mega Millions jackpot? Merle and Patricia Butler are from the picturesque town of Red Bud, Illinois, population 3,700. They bought the winning ticket at a convenience store in Red Bud.
So, just remember Merle and Patricia if you think the odds of winning this latest Powerball lottery are just too astronomical.
Lustig said, "I'm playing Powerball. You better believe it."