Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Fantasy sports sweep the nation

Living with boys definitely has its advantages, especially in the sense that I can discuss sporting issues at great length whenever I want.

Last year I lived with all girls, and I kid you not, one of my roommates once told me she wasn’t sure what hockey was.

Fast-forward to this year when two of my roommates are boys, and because of them I love Saturdays and Sundays even more this year than I ever have.

It is through Jesse and Joe that I have found out about the wonderful world of fantasy sports.

No, I am not talking about a pretend sport we just make up for shits and giggles, but the craze over which sports fans from the ages of 10 to who-knows-how-old obsess.

Fantasy football and baseball are by far the most popular fantasy sports, but there is also fantasy basketball, and I have heard even fantasy Survivor.

Right now some of you are totally nodding your heads in agreement, smiling and thinking about your team, while some of you are probably thinking, “What the heck is this girl talking about?”

To start a fantasy league, you get together about eight or nine friends or co-workers and decide if you are going to run the league by yourselves or go through a computer program like

If you choose to use something like, then the computer will add up points for everyone, and it is pretty hands off. If you are someone who likes the challenge and wants to add up thousands of points each week, then so be it; don’t use the computer.

The next step is to assemble everyone to stage the big draft. This is set up like a regular draft in any sport where each team, or person, will choose one player and then the next and so on.

This draft is the most important part of the season, and it is important to pick players who do not have a history of illness or inconsistency, or it will most definitely come back to bite you later in the season.

Next, the league commissioner, or computer, will decide in what order players will face off and make up the schedule where most teams will play each other twice.

Every Sunday each fantasy player has to decide which of his players he is going to start. Most leagues for football say you have to start one quarterback, two running backs, three receivers, a kicker and two tight ends. On defense, each player picks a whole team versus picking individual starters at each position.

It is important to pay attention to the players one starts each week to make sure they are: one, healthy, and two, even playing. From what I am told, it definitely screws you over if you start someone who has a bye week.

Now the actual game each week is ready to begin.

At the beginning of the season, there is a point system established for game-day performances. For example, for every 50 rushing yards, a team earns three points, and every touchdown is worth six points. There is a statistic to be earned for every aspect of the game.

Sunday and Monday, most fantasy players will have their roster sheets out at all times and will be checking on the progress of all of their players and usually their opponents’ players.

That is actually why I first became interested in fantasy football.

Sundays I would hear Joe and Jesse downstairs cheering loudly for a game, so I would get excited and go see what the fuss was about. When I would come down, it was two weird teams like the Chargers or the Jets, teams the Packers weren’t even playing, and I would wonder why they were getting so excited.

Some of the games would not even be that exciting, but they would still be whooping it up. Early in September, I asked them why they even cared about these random games. They would then proceed to tell me one had a running back on this team and the other one’s opponent for the week in his fantasy league had the quarterback on that team.

Now every Sunday I sit there and watch the games with them, and the first thing I ask is, “Who do you guys have in this game, and who are you playing in your fantasy league?”

They told me from the beginning that fantasy football is great, and now every game means something to them and just makes each game on Sunday more exciting and more important.

Even though I am not playing in the league, I totally agree.

As we were discussing the concept of fantasy leagues this past Sunday, they both told me they were gearing up for the basketball season, and a few minutes later, I heard them discussing how their baseball league ended.

I asked them who was in the baseball league, and they rattled off about ten names of some of our best friends from high school. I asked them if they still talk to a few of them that much, and both agreed that not only is fantasy totally fun in terms of being excited about every game but that it is also a great way to stay in touch with friends.

Jesse claims he still gets to talk to a ton of friends from back home just due to their mutual involvement in the fantasy league.

Not only do fantasy sports provide for greater enjoyment of professional sports, but they also can become something great socially.

After learning about the wonderful world of fantasy sports, all I can say is, “Who wants a fantasy football ride?”

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