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A League of their Own: Fantasy Football


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BY CLAIRE WILDER

Fantasy football: The 54-year-old tradition of dudes putting together their ultimate football teams to compete with other fantasy players week after week. The competition has usually been associated with guys, but sometimes girls participate as well.

According to the Fantasy Sports Trade Association, around 80% of the people who play Fantasy Football are men. Even though some girls continue to build fantasy teams get invested in the process, they still seem to be in the minority.

“All of the boys make a league, but the girls are never allowed in, so I made one, myself,” says senior Danielle Bryan, who has been playing for three years now.

A look at Danielle Bryan’s Fantasy lineup as of December 5th (PHOTO BY BRYAN)

Bryan regularly watches college football, except during fantasy time when all of her focus is on the NFL. She is currently in first place in her league of 12 girls and says her biggest disappointment this season was Deshaun Watson (Houston Quarterback), her best performing player, who tore his ACL.

Fewer girls participate in fantasy football than guys. “I think football has been deemed a ‘guys thing’ because boys really take pride in knowing players, teams and statistics,” says Bryan.

Senior Ashley Rothert doesn’t play fantasy, but watches football games on occasion and has a good understanding of the game, players, and how fantasy works. However, she feels belittled when talking with guys about football.

“Even if I make a true statement, guys look at me funny and think I don’t know anything,” says Rothert.

Sophomore Andrew Mehl has participated in Fantasy Football since 8th grade, and keeps playing every year because he says it’s a “fun and competitive activity” he enjoys with his friends. He seems content with his running back Todd Gurley, who averages around 20 points every week but regrets that he can’t say the same about wide receiver, Julio Jones.

In contrast to Bryan and Rothert, Mehl doesn’t find it odd that more guys participate than girls.

“I just feel like more guys watch football than girls do,” he says. “That’s just how it is.”

However, he’s not against girls joining leagues.

“I like when girls play fantasy because we’re all equal and I think everyone should play because it’s really a lifestyle,” says Mehl.

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