Alternative fantasy leagues are for real at Staples

Jesse Greenspun, Web Sports Editor

For many Staples students, the start of fall marks the beginning of the fantasy football season. Hours of valuable homework time are spent painstakingly analyzing projections for upcoming games, checking injury reports and finalizing the perfect lineup in order to obliterate their virtual competition.

But there is a select group of students who stray well outside the realm of fantasy football and into the uncharted territory of alternative fantasy games, such as golf and hockey.

Ben Popkin ’16 is one of the few fantasy football outcasts at Staples and believes that many students do not realize the potential of unconventional fantasy leagues. “Fantasy football gets quite a lot of hype around Staples, but fantasy golf is where the real fun is,” Popkin noted.

Similarly to football, golf leagues offer the opportunity to draft a dream team of golfers in order to compete against friends and strangers. Instead of gaining points through rushing yards and touchdown passes, golfers earn points for their performance in each round of a tournament.

The typical PGA tour event consists of four rounds, 18 holes each, and each player’s real-life cumulative score at the end of each round contributes to the score of the fantasy team. Unlike fantasy football, the team with the lowest score wins at the end of the week.

“Golf is a pretty slow moving sport, so playing fantasy golf makes it much more exciting and engaging to watch,” added Popkin.

Jason Streiter ’17 is a self proclaimed fantasy hockey fanatic who hasn’t missed a season in over seven years. “Fantasy hockey is more fun than football because there are multiple games per week in which players can get points,” Streiter said.

He also mentioned that playing fantasy hockey is a great way to bond with other hockey fans around the world, as there are not many at Staples. “Fantasy hockey has helped me to form a community of people with similar interests that I would not have found otherwise,” Streiter said.

Not only are alternative fantasy games fun, they are just as lucrative to play as fantasy football. The average CBS Sports buy in for a 12 team fantasy football league is $99.99 for a $600 payout, identical to that of a CBS Sports fantasy hockey league.

Avid fantasy football player Brendan Price ’16 said that “I would play other fantasy sports, I just don’t know that much about them.” However, he did note that he “tried fantasy basketball last year” and even won his league.