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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Fantasy football: All the ways to play

    I used to think football was stupid. I hated watching it, and whenever anyone started talking about it I walked away — that is, until my freshman year of college.

    Arizona football is a pretty big deal, so I knew that was unavoidable, but the problem was that I was ignorant of almost everything football until a couple of my hallmates decided to start a fantasy football league.

    Usually I would have ignored it, but since it was the beginning of the year and I’d had yet to have a good opportunity to get to know the guys, I signed up. None of them knew how ignorant I was of football — yet — so I feigned knowledge.

    In the days leading up to the fantasy football draft they’d ask who I was looking at and I said “I’m not giving you my picks.” In reality, I didn’t have any picks. At the draft I letting my cousin pick my team for me. But I refused to be thought of as an idiot by these guys, so I had to fake it. Soon though, I didn’t have to anymore. Week after week, I learned more and football grew to become my favorite sport.

    So what’s the point of this long story? If you’re a bit shy around new people like me, games can be one of the best ways to make friends. When you’re a guy, sports are some of the best things to bond over.

    Combine those two things and you have a perfect recipe for instant bro-lationships: fantasy football. So, for a successful season, remember:

    Know your league and strategize — Obviously, it’s important to know the rules of your league and strategize accordingly. In a league where touchdown passes aren’t worth as much as rushing touchdowns, obviously the value of running backs goes up, so be sure to draft accordingly. Also, in a keeper league where it’s an option to retain players for the next year, don’t just look at this season, but to the future.

    If you’re stuck, don’t be afraid to use a guide — Some video game purists say that using a guide is tantamount to cheating, but that is a little extreme. When the idea of a game is to have fun, getting stuck is counterintuitive. There are guides to just about every video game under the sun and there are just as many for each season of football.

    ESPN.com has a slew of knowledgeable columnists who post multiple articles every week on the shifting football situation. Whether you peek at one during the season or just take a glance during the draft, it can’t hurt to get a second opinion. (Also, if you’re afraid of what the others in your league might think, don’t let them know. It can be your little secret weapon.)

    Do your research — this one is a basic principle. Go online and do your homework, learning about the break out players and sleeper picks. I guarantee everyone else is doing it, so it’s a good idea to read up a little before picking a team. After all, you wouldn’t just drop money on a game you knew nothing about.

    Don’t stop playing it — there is nothing more frustrating than having a league with members who just give up. It’s like playing Call of Duty online versus playing against the computer; the former is far more fun. Dropping out is also the surest way to piss off everyone else in the league, going against the whole idea of using it to help make friends. If it has been a tough week, suck it up and get back in there next week; with effort comes success.

    Using these tips should help in making a competent fantasy football player out of anyone, and I highly suggest you give it a shot as a hall or with a group of friends. You can even spice things up and put money on it.

    The bottom line is though, if you like games and you’re competitive, you’ll love fantasy football. Building up a team and watching the players in real life is far more satisfying than owning some noobs online. Trust me, since I used to think just the opposite.

    _— Jason Krell is a junior studying creative writing and Italian.
    He can be reached at arts@wildcat.arizona.edu._

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