The Wide Appeal of Fantasy Football at FGCU

James Curtis, Staff Writer

Football is the most popular sport in the country and with no collegiate football program here at FGCU, fantasy football is one of the ways for students to still stay engaged with the sport.

Students like sophomore Carson Zorn say that fantasy football is a great way to stay in the know of what’s going on in the NFL by having players on your team that play across the league, keeping people more interested in games.

“I think it just makes watching football more fun,” Zorn said. “Before fantasy football, you have maybe one or two teams that you root for, just watching their games. But ever since I got into fantasy football, I got more into football itself because now I’m like ‘oh, the Patriots are playing the Bears.’ I don’t like either of those teams, but I have David Montgomery and I need him to get me 10 points, so I guess I’ll have to watch to see if he does.”

There are various settings players can set for how points are earned in a league, but commonly every yard gained by a player, other than the quarterback, earns them 0.1 points in fantasy football. Every touchdown earns them six points. Players can also lose points as a result of turnovers.

Fantasy football is heading toward the conclusion of the regular season in most leagues. Most league playoffs begin around week 14, ending by the last week of the regular season in the NFL. Whether it’s with friends, family or random people competing online, it’s a special way for many to get their football fix in.
“One of the 14-person leagues is a league I’m in with my fraternity,” Zorn said. “When we did the draft, we did the draft on the opening night of Bills vs Rams, and we did the draft at 6 p.m. and watched the game together at 8 p.m. Sometimes we watch games together, especially if one is going up against the other and they both have players in that game.”

Fantasy football, like many other sports hobbies, can sometimes have money attached or gambling involved. This could include 12 people contributing $10 each as a “buy-in” for the league. That money is pooled together and then distributed in a variety of ways depending on the league.

Junior Darrek Gutierrez says it can be a way for people get involved in the first place.

“I think the idea that people can make money from a hobby like fantasy football is something that a lot of people are intrigued with,” Gutierrez said. “Also, being able to do it with your friends or family is something that brings people together.”

Zorn is a Cincinnati Bengals fan and Gutierrez is a San Francisco 49ers fan. Both teams have star fantasy football players on their teams. Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow has scored the fourth most points at his position. 49ers running back Christian McCaffrey has scored the third most points at his position.