Fantasy fever


Abe Nahmias

Bhumit Patel (11) checks on his fantasy lineup.

NFL teams are not the only teams that clash against each other every Sunday. Sunday is also the day when fantasy football squads compete for triumph. If you walk around the halls of White Station during football season, it is quite possible that you will hear students chattering about the success or failure that their fantasy team experienced that weekend. Fantasy football is a wave that is sweeping over the country, dominating conversation and sparking good-hearted competitive nature.

Out of the large array of fantasy sports, football is arguably the most popular. The Fantasy Sports Trade Association (FSTA) reported that about 33 million Americans ages 12 and over play fantasy football each year. There are many reasons as to why fantasy football is so beloved, such as epic draft parties and victory over a close friend.

The fantasy fever has hit White Station hard. Robin Du (12) is an avid fantasy owner and member of three separate leagues. One of the prominent leagues that Du is involved in is a league at school, sometimes referred to as “Memphis2K.”

“I don’t think there has ever been a time where I’ve been with friends and we have not talked about fantasy football,” Du said. “Friends don’t make small talk, they talk fantasy.”

Du considers himself a “pretty good” fantasy owner.

“I started playing fantasy football last year, and I made the playoffs my first year,” Du said.“Currently, in the three leagues I manage, I am 7-1, 6-2, and 5-3.”

Bhumit Patel (11) is another White Station student that lives and breathes fantasy. Patel, also a member of a league of classmates at school, is no fantasy rookie. He started competing three years ago, around the time he first started watching the NFL. Patel, compared to most fantasy players, is quite dedicated to the success of his team.

“I check my teams once a day,” Patel said. “You have to be on top of [your] waiver game.”

Waivers are set amounts of time where all teams have the opportunity to claim a player. Along with being the king of the waivers, Patel especially enjoys one certain aspect of fantasy football: trash talk. According to those that know Patel, he is talented at that also.

Students are not the only people at the school that participate in fantasy leagues. Andrew Bell, an Intro to Marketing teacher, is a passionate fantasy competitor. Bell also enjoys talking fantasy with his students during his free time. He plays in a competitive league with his out-of-town buddies.

“It’s very serious,” Bell said. …”There’s a rule that if you don’t start a full roster each week, you will get fined.”

Despite the fact that he plays in a no-nonsense league with money involved, he still enjoys the thrills and emotions that come along with playing fantasy.

“Watching the football games and knowing my points are going to go up is probably my favorite part of playing,” Bell said.

Bell is a seasoned veteran, playing in the same league since 2008. Bell may have vast experience, but he does not consider himself an adept fantasy owner.

“I’d like to consider myself [a talented player], but my history and track record would say otherwise,” Bell said. “I have been in this league for nine years, and I’ve made the playoffs two, maybe three, times.”

Fantasy is a source of entertainment on Sundays. It allows you to keep in touch with friends and classmates. Ultimately, it adds meaning to gameday.