Me and my friends aren't so much beginning fantasy football players, we've played for like 5 or 6 years on and off, but we've ALWAYS done live online drafts due to its simplicity in nature (esp. with yahoo). This year we're gonna try doing an in-person offline draft; we just thought it'd be funner. I'm the commissioner, so I'm taking the responsibility of ensuring a fluid, efficient draft. What do you think I'll need (besides beer)? Would I just get a standard cheat sheet for everyone so we always know available players? and maybe a white board to write picks onto? or is it easier to have notecards with player names on them and tape them up onto a draft board? Besides being "on the clock", are there any rules i should announce before the draft that all participants should be aware of? just let me know please! any advice would help!
bjoliva wrote:Me and my friends aren't so much beginning fantasy football players, we've played for like 5 or 6 years on and off, but we've ALWAYS done live online drafts due to its simplicity in nature (esp. with yahoo). This year we're gonna try doing an in-person offline draft; we just thought it'd be funner. I'm the commissioner, so I'm taking the responsibility of ensuring a fluid, efficient draft. What do you think I'll need (besides beer)? Would I just get a standard cheat sheet for everyone so we always know available players? and maybe a white board to write picks onto? or is it easier to have notecards with player names on them and tape them up onto a draft board? Besides being "on the clock", are there any rules i should announce before the draft that all participants should be aware of? just let me know please! any advice would help!
I don't think you need any of that. My main league has been doing live in-person drafts for years, and all the Commish provides is a sheet to write down who has been picked and maybe burgers and beer. It's up to them to come prepared with cheatsheets and it's up to them to update them after every pick.
If you are worried that someone will show up with nothing, I would print out an alphabetical list of all the players in the NFL and let them use that if they come without their own cheatsheet. The only reason I would provide that is because it could really slow things down if you have someone constantly calling out names that have already been picked.
The main rule is that they can't talk about guys that haven't been drafted yet. If someone can't remember someone on their own, it's their problem.
I would also provide for a break somewhere in the middle of the draft so people can go smoke, potty, etc.
My league draft is at my house each year, and for 30 bucks I purchase a draft board complete with updated/color-coded player stickers. I use the this site (http://www.fjfantasy.com), and their rosters are extremely accurate (I upload rosters to Yahoo's "offline" draft setup). Other than that, get some beers and chips. Each manager just needs to bring themselves and whatever they think they need. Best way to do FF.
You can certainly do without the board, but it makes two things happen: it keeps a potentially long draft running quick and smooth, and as commish, you look good producing an impressive draft setup.
In my league we do a combination of things. We run the Sportsline.com draft room with the commish logged in. We use a laptop hooked up to a projector so everyone can see it. It is good cause it keeps the time and enters the players to the team drafting so we don't have to go back and do it later. We also have a draft board setup in another room or the other side of the room. This is cause we have a 12 team league and some have mutiple owners. With that many people plus some other friends that stop by everyone can know what is going on.
My friends and I have two drafts back to back on the same day. One is a keeper league the other a redraft. Next year we're adding a Dynasty league on top of all that. After a few years, we've pretty much narrowed it down to this process:
1) Make sure everyone in has paid thier dues (if any) before the draft, or at the very least has made specific payment arraingements with the commish. One year we had a guy drop out the very last minute and it wasn't easy to find a quick replacement like it is with an online league, especially when the due was $100.
2) Poll the league and find out the best day and time to hold the draft. Trying to get 12+ guys with busy lives together isn't always easy, but by trying to tackle that issue as early as possible, we still manage to do it with two different leagues (24+ guys) all in one day.
3) Make sure everyone has good directions to where the draft is being held and exactly what time it starts. Most of us know each other pretty well and where each of us live, but there are usually a few new guys to the league that may not know everyone so well, plus a few more guys that will wander in late and hold everyone up if you're not very specific about the time. We throw the time, addy and directions up on the league web site and then send e-mails and spread the word that it's available there if anyone needs it.
4) Chips are fine, but nothing compares to heartburn. See if you can have the guys try to recruit a wife or girlfriend to cook up a big pot of something on draft day. Last year the Commish's wife made a big pot of chili for us. This year the league Champion's wife has offered to cook up something. Or you can fire up the grill and slap some dogs and burgers on it.
5) We started with BYOB, but we eventually moved to getting a quarter keg. It's cheaper for everyone and it makes clean up a little easier. We usually go with Bud Light and everyone is cool with it.
6) Make sure there are enough seats and flat space to go around. Most guys will have folders and magazines and will flip through them constantly throughout the draft. They will be making notes, scratching players off, picking up and putting down beers and so on. Pull out anything that you can that will provide this space, even if it's a ping pong table.
7) We started off with a big white board and a black marker, but the board man got real tired of constantly writing out all of the player's names. Short hand started to get confusing, so we switched over to the note-card method and have stuck with it ever since. We keep them in alphabetical order in piles separated by position, so they're easy to find. We still keep the marker around though. There's usually a few players drafted in the late rounds that you won't have a card for, mostly lesser known rookies.
8) We didn't have a timing rule in place for a while, but a few guys really started to abuse it. We now have a 3 minute limit per pick. If a man doesn't pick within that time frame, we move on to the next guy immediately and the skipped man can make his pick at any time thereafter, but not while someone else is on the clock. He has to let the man on the clock pick and jump in before the next guy is up.
9) We normally don't set up a break time mid-draft because the pace of the draft usually slows down significantly after the first 6 or 7 rounds anyway. This was the reason we needed the 3 minute rule to begin with. If anyone needs to hit the bathroom or refresh thier beer, they usually have the time to do it right after their pick while the draft carries on. If they don't make it back before they're up again, see #8.
10) We don't bother with providing cheat sheets to the unprepaired. In fact, it's considered taboo to even let the guy next to you borrow your magazine for a quick second. We all look forward to draft day and spend weeks before screwing with each other's heads. If anyone in our league actually offers a cheat sheet out of sheer kindness, you can bet the farm it's a very bad one....
I'm doing a live offline draft for the first time this year also! So far, we are grilling up some burgers and brats, getting a 1/4 keg of Bud Light and having a hell of a time. I went to Target and bought a cardboard presentation board, drew up some lines and made myself a draft board. I spent about $15 and bought color coded sticker labels of all the players based on position. So, I think I am ready for this weekends draft.
This is my third year doing FF, and I think doing a live draft is the only way to go. What more reason do you need to get together with friends to eat, drink and watch football!
Good luck to everyone this year!!! GOOOoooooo BEARS!