Opinion: Fantasy football is a way to connect with friends

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    People ask me all the time: “Why do you play fantasy football?” My answer is simple: “It’s fun!”

    But before we can really get into why people play fantasy football, it is important to know what it is.

    Fantasy football is an interactive, virtual competition in which people manage professional football players versus one another. While there are many different ways to play fantasy football, all forms of the game allow people to act as a general manager of a pseudo-football team.

    Alright, now that we know what fantasy football is, let’s ask why do people get into fantasy football other than it being “fun”?

    Fantasy football is a way to spend time with my friends doing something we all are interested in.

    Not only does it allow me to hang out with my college friends, but it also lets me keep in touch with my friends from high school.

    Today, with everything going on in our lives, it’s hard to keep up with everyone, especially those I don’t see on a daily basis. Fantasy football allows me to keep up with friends who I don’t normally see.

    Playing fantasy football allows us all to be competitive on a week-to-week basis throughout the year. Having that added competition thrown into the mix of regular season games puts more meaning into the games. This makes watching games in which “your” team isn’t playing all that more interesting.

    This ultimately does two things: 1) causes you to learn more about different teams and their players and 2) causes you to cheer for teams and players you normally wouldn’t.

    Depending on which way you look at it, this can be a good or a bad thing.

    It can be good because you are learning more about the sport. A lot of fans will cheer for their team and will know only the players from that team. What fantasy football does is give fans the opportunity to learn more about different players and the teams they play for.

    On the other hand, this can be bad because people’s loyalty wavers. For example, you could see Dallas Cowboys fans cheering for DeSean Jackson, who plays for their bitter rival, the Philadelphia Eagles.

    Ultimately, it’s up to you to find the balance between obtaining knowledge about football and keeping loyal to your teams. At this point, you are left with a fun and entertaining challenge that you can keep coming back to week after week. That, my friends, is factually correct.

    Judge Howell is a junior Broadcast Journalism major from Plano, TX