More than a fantasy

Fantasy football is always popular among South High students


Zeke Gould

Senior Tanner Zeloski gets punished for his poor performance in last year’s fantasy football league.

At Parkway South, fantasy football is as important as school for some students.

Prior to every NFL season, many students organize fantasy leagues with friends and family. After forming a league, a draft is scheduled where members of the league draft NFL players to their fantasy lineups. 

“My draft took place at a pasta dinner,” freshman Leland Shafer said. “It was amazing. 6/10.”

Fantasy Football drafts require a surprising amount of focus and strategy. Every player has their own idea of what you should do. The year-defining pick usually comes within the first round. In the first round, the best players are still available for drafting. 

“My first overall pick was Jalen Hurts,” Shafer said.

This is an unorthodox pick as most people pick a running back or wide receiver. The consensus first-overall pick this year was a toss-up between Jonathan Taylor and Christian McCaffrey.

A sometimes overlooked part of the drafting process comes in the later rounds. Some managers will lose focus and blow off their last few selections. Making wise selections late in the draft separates the great teams from the good. 

Sophomore Parker Wolf said he likes to use his late-round picks to gamble on upcoming rookies.

“This year, I drafted Skyy Moore and Jahan Dotson with my last two picks,” he said. 

After drafting, managers set their lineup each week and earn points based on their players’ performance. They have to keep up with injuries, bye weeks, and more to maximize the potential of their team. At the end of the season, there is a tournament that decides the winner. Winning can mean different things depending on the league.

“The winner gets $400 in my family league,” senior Tanner Zeloski said.

In some cases, fantasy football is less about winning and more about not coming in last. For the player that comes in last place, many leagues have a loser’s punishment. In Zeloski’s league, the loser is forced to take part in the infamous Waffle House challenge. This challenge involves spending 24 hours in a Waffle House, with every waffle eaten removing 1 hour from the total time spent in the restaurant. This is just one example of many bad punishments losers have to experience.

“Walking around the mall in booty shorts is the worst I’ve heard of,” said Wolf.

Sometimes, even more than one person is punished. When this is the case, the people who miss the playoffs are often considered losers.

“In my league, the bottom four managers are all punished. They all have to run a 2-mile race while drinking milk.” Shafer said. 

Last season, Zeloski finished last in his league. As a punishment, he was tied to a chair while league members threw whatever they wanted at him. For 15 minutes, Zeloski was doused in hot sauces, glitter, syrup, and a 5-pound bag of flour among many other things. 

“It was absolutely horrendous. Easily the WORST thing that’s happened to me,” Zeloski said.