We hosted our first YA Fantasy Football league in the fall of 2007. It has grown every year since and patrons actually start asking about it as early as July.
We use yahoo sports to host our game, but there are many other options including ESPN, CBS Sports, NFL.COM, and more. The person setting up the league is the league commissioner. This person will need to create a yahoo ID if they do not already have one. It will walk you through setting up the league. It is very easy to set up because default leagues are already established. You have the option to change the way points are scored, but it is not necessary. An even number of players works best for scheduling. You can play with anywhere from 4-20 participants, but it is best to limit the league to 8-14 people. We have two leagues set up each year to accommodate the 20+ teens who want to play.
When setting up the league, it will walk you through how to invite people via email or by sharing the league ID and password. All participants must create a yahoo ID. We always have a live draft for the first league. We schedule it well in advance and plan a big draft party with cheese dip and other football season snacks. We also close down our computer lab for the draft. You don’t have to have a live draft, but it is a fun way to get participants into the library and excited for the season. If you don’t want to hold a live draft, it can be set to autopick teams.
Why Fantasy Football
Fantasy football is all about statistics. There is a great deal of strategy in choosing players to score points. It also requires decision-making skills. Participants must weigh options and evaluate trades, which player to have in their starting line-up, and more.
We have several regular patrons who were first introduced to our area through fantasy football. They participate in other events, utilize our collection, and take advantage of other services.
Finally, it is one more activity that guys will be interested in. (However, we have had several female participants and they have been competitive.) Talking football is a good way to strike up a conversation and begin to develop a relationship with patrons.
If you are interested in setting up a fantasy football league, it is pretty darn easy. Still, you could alway recruit the help of a person who has experience playing fantasy football to help you. I heard of one YA librarian who utilized a tech guy who also happened to be a big fantasy football fan to help her get started.