Caltech and Powerball Jackpot

Caltech Professor, Caltech, Professor at Caltech

A professor at Caltech thinks buying a Powerball ticket doesn’t make a whole lot of sense (photo credit:

Did you recently purchase a Powerball ticket? Leave it to a professor at the California Institute of Technology (home of Sheldon from “The Big Bang Theory”) to tell you that you’re absolutely nuts. And why? Because the math just doesn’t add up. And what are the odds? One in three hundred million. Three hundred million! That seems like quite a stretch if you ask us…

And if there’s anything we know about Caltech (and we know quite a bit — Brian of our firm has met personally with the members of their small team of admissions officers at their offices in Pasadena, California), it’s that Caltech students and professors tend to have a fantastic sense of humor. As reported by “CBS LA” in a piece about the odds of winning the Powerball jackpot, “‘Imagine taking 74 flights out of LAX and each one of them leaving on time. The chances of that are low, but winning the Powerball that’s even lower chances,’ the [Caltech] professor [Omer Tamuz] explains…The most popular Powerball numbers are 8, 14, 29, 39, 54 and Powerball 29, but Tamuz says there’s no such thing as lucky numbers. The order of numbers doesn’t change your odds either. ‘If you’re guessing a random set of numbers, 17, 3, 5 … you don’t have a better chance of winning than if you guess 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6,’ he says. Wait asked the professor what the odds are of him buying a ticket – the answer: slim to none.”

Have a question about the California Institute of Technology? Or their wonky traditions? Thinking of applying to this school that has topped the “US News & World Report” rankings for “Best National University” on more than one occasion (we know, that may surprise you!)? If so, let us know your questions by posting a Comment below. We look forward to hearing from you.


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