Online Fantasy Sport games gain popularity

By Dave Damiano
March 8, 2007

Meghan Hurley

Flashback: It’s the last week for the National Football League.

Senior human resource major Anthony Falcone is preparing to edit his fantasy football lineup for the last time of the season.

“I am a little nervous but I feel that there was a slim chance that my players would come through.” Falcone said.

Falcone, who started off the season with one win in five weeks, is now preparing to play in the championship game.

Fantasy football is just one of the popular sports that you can play online. Other sports include baseball, basketball, golf, hockey and auto racing.

According to the Fantasy Sports Trade Association, over 16 million adults, ranging from ages 18 to 55, play fantasy sports.

“Fantasy football is a huge reason why the NFL has become so popular recently,” Falcone said. “It should be played by everyone.”

Each league is different but most teams consist of a quarterback, two running backs, three wide receivers, one tight-end, one kicker and one defensive team. The league maximum consists of twelve teams with one goal in mind: to draft the best players.

Each week, teams go head to head and based on a point system, they try to beat one another. For example, if a player on a team scores a touchdown, it counts for six points. How long the touchdown is also affects how many points one receives.

Fantasy sports was first made popular by Daniel Okrent, an American writer and public editor for The New York Times.

Okrent is also an avid baseball fan and first pitched the idea of Rotisserie League Baseball to a group of friends in 1979.

“I have been playing fantasy sports since I was 12,” Falcone said. “Besides football, I play fantasy baseball and basketball.”

The invention of the internet has helped create the phenomenon known as Fantasy Sports. In 1998, Yahoo Fantasy Sports first opened, consisting of private and public leagues. Any player can join a public league but they also have the option of creating their own group with a bunch of friends.

“When I was a kid, I used to set up tables and chairs for my father’s fantasy sports drafts in the backyard of my house,” Falcone said.

Besides Yahoo, other websites such as and offer fantasy sports. Not all of the leagues are free; offers basic packages starting at $9.99 and can range up to $49.99.

Falcone managed to win the championship against a private group of Cabrini students, capping one of the most amazing comebacks in his career. After beating the number one and two seeds of the tournament, he destroyed the number three team, TommyGunzz, by a score of 95-47.

The fantasy baseball season started on Feb. 15.

“I feel I’m going to dominate the baseball season, just like in every other fantasy league I participate in,” Falcone said.

Loquitur welcomes your comments on this story. Please send your comments to: The editors will review your points each week and make corrections if warranted.

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Dave Damiano

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