No woes for Fantasy Footballers at Booth

By Pushya Jataprolu '16

Apart from the 60 odd student groups that can keep you busy if you’re not catching up on a course or tweaking your resume, I have found quite a few social hobbies keeping Boothies busy.

So, when I noticed lately, that I was hearing more and more trash talk on how ‘this guy from my team beat your team so bad’, I decided to get to the roots of this, and queried Jay Raghavan, a second year and avid Fantasy Footballer.

Pushya Jataprolu '16

Pushya Jataprolu '16

Pushya Jataprolu [PJ] For the muggles like me, could you tell me what Fantasy Football is and what Fantasy Football at Booth is?

Jay Raghavan [JR] Fantasy football is awesome and boasts millions of participants in the US. You get together with a group of 8-12 (or higher!) friends or family to "draft" current NFL players into your make-believe Fantasy team. Nobody else in your league can have the same players as you, and how each of your players performs in real life affects how many points they add to your team. Each week you are "matched up" against someone else in the league. If your collection of players does better than your opponent that week, then you win. Your collection of wins and losses over the season will determine whether you win your league.

At Booth I know that there are several leagues amongst the student body. I have one with 11 other Boothies, which Alberto Jabiles won last year. We also had someone get last place- I won't name him here but we owe him some kind of public punishment at Harper!

[PJ] What is the scale of this operation? How many Boothies are involved and what are the busy seasons?

[JR] Football season goes from September till the Super Bowl in February, but Fantasy Football stops at the end of December. I spend all day every Sunday watching football.

Jay Raghavan shares his enthusiasm about the latest student group at Booth.

Jay Raghavan shares his enthusiasm about the latest student group at Booth.

[PJ] So is this like a legit student group that people pay and sign up for?

[JR] No it's totally informal.

[PJ] Why Fantasy Football? What drives you and the rest of the people involved?

[JR] I got into Fantasy Football as a way of staying in touch with and beating my friends from college (i.e., lots of trash talk in our friend group listserv). I wasn't even really into football beforehand, but I became addicted to it a few years ago and learned how football worked. At Booth, many of us started it the summer before we started school as a way of getting to know each other. I have friends through my league that I otherwise don't see that often given our schedules.

It's healthy competition over something fun and easy to learn. I have a third league with my wife and some of our friends. She learned it last year and is destroying me this season.

[PJ] How does it fit into the busy schedule of a Boothie? Have you had any dramatic prioritizations?

[JR] Haha, I tend not to make study group plans on Sunday if I can help it, and I'll try to weave in Thursday night football into TNDC Pregaming, but I definitely wouldn't sacrifice my life at Booth too significantly. It's fun and addictive, but apart from more reclusive Sundays in the fall, it's just another hobby.

Pushya is People Editor at Chicago Business and looks to uncover the wonderful weirdness of the Booth community.