I am a self-proclaimed sports nut. However, there is something that I don’t do that would make any person these days question my claim. Can you guess what I am talking about?
I don’t play fantasy sports.
Fantasy sports are king. People don’t just have fantasy seasons they have fantasy drafts, fantasy parties, and fantasy debates. ESPN has fantasy programs, fantasy analysts, and fantasy competitions. You can’t get through a commercial break during a sporting event without one or two spots advertising different fantasy leagues. Fantasy sports have captivated the interest of millions of new fans, driven up the business of sports themed restaurants across the country, sold countless television packages, and generated billions and billions of dollars.
Despite all this, I sit out when it comes to fantasy. When it all comes down to it, I am just not interested. I can say that I have had one non-memorable experience with the phenomenon. Several years ago, some friends roped me in to joining their NFL league. I haphazardly drafted players and then did nothing with my roster the whole season. Injured players competed for me every week. It completely bored me and I just didn’t pay it any attention.
Working in an athletic department also kept me away from fantasy sports for over four years. The NCAA stipulates that intercollegiate athletics employees may not bet or wager on any aspect of a game. Although this relates primarily to college athletics, I still stayed away to be on the safe side (and really just because I had no interest).
What do you guys think, are you surprised at my apathy? Am I a bad sports fan?
I admit, I am a little jealous of my friends and family who are hardcore fantasy players. They have an enthusiasm and investment in sports that I don’t have. Don’t get me wrong, I have an enthusiasm for sports as well, it is just different from my friends. Their fantasy leagues give them so much passion for NFL Sundays that you would almost think they started drinking at 6 a.m. They are engaged and ready to rage!
What I am probably most envious of is the knowledge that my fantasy playing buddies have. I used to pride myself on knowing all the players in all the leagues. These days I can’t keep up. However, if you know someone who plays fantasy you are aware that they know the professional leagues from top to the bottom. The degree to which they prepare for fantasy and then go full throttle with it for the entire season almost make them encyclopedias of the NFL or MLB.
I am debating giving fantasy sports another try. I think I want to experience the craze and actually manage my roster with an intent to actually win. What do my readers think? Is it worthwhile? I understand I might have to wait for the 2016 MLB season to really give it a go but I could use some friendly advice now. Don’t Blink.