Apparently 20% of lottery players pick their own numbers. Although I can’t source this ‘fact’ and I’m admittedly speculating from here, I’ll bet many of those who self-select are choosing familiar numbers such as birthdays. This means there will be a disproportionate number of digits from 1-12 and to a lesser extent from 13-31, out of a maximum numbered ball of 54. Tonight’s numbers were all below 30.

This is an unusual but not unheard of situation. It comes to (31!-26!)/(54!-49!)*31/54 which resolves to 3.084%. So a little more than 3% of the time you can expect all the numbers that come up to be calendar date numbers. Assuming the same percentage of the auto-pics are calendar dates (e.g., assuming they don’t weight the random numbers away from manually picked number sets), and my idle speculation that more than half of the self-picked numbers are all calendar numbers, I come up with a guess of 15% of the tickets sold represent 3% of the number space. That’s overloaded 5 to 1 compared to a random distribution.

I believe there will be multiple winners. It’s a shame, I was looking forward to the largest single payout ever.

Edit: According to CBS News there is a 75% probability that someone has won it. That appears to be based on the number of tickets sold and the odds of winning (160 million and 1-in-175 million) then taking into account duplicate tickets. But if you also take into account the 5-to-1 overloading, then this number jumps to roughly (1-.75)/5=0.05 or 95%. I am even more confident there will be multiple winners.