Have your fantasy fun then get back to watching football for football

by Joseph Ciolino, Opinion Editor

When I was a young kid I would camp out in my living room every Sunday morning waiting for the eight or nine pro football games to begin.

This is the day I would look forward to every week, as Randy Moss would run down the field and make ridiculous catches for touchdowns, LaDainian Tomlinson would wow us with his breathtaking touchdown runs, and Peyton Manning would make defenses’ heads spin.

I had no idea what fantasy football was.

I had no idea that players could earn you “Internet points” used to dominate your friends in an attempt to make them get that end-of-season loser tattoo.

To me it was all about watching football for football.

Watching the chess matches between coaches, defensive and offensive lines clashing into each other in the trenches. Big hits, close calls and waiting for big plays to happen when I jump up from my seat.

Those were the days.

Let me take you back to the middle 2014 NFL season. My Chargers went to Miami and faced the Dolphins.

I was stoked, mainly because one of my good friends is a die-hard Dolphins fan and he was on his way over to watch the game.

He is also in the same fantasy football league with me and a bunch of our other friends, including my roommate and oldest friend, who is a Chargers fan like myself.

There we are, dawning our Bolts jerseys as my friend enters the house wearing his aqua green Dolphins jersey.

We’re ready for a battle, a war of words, eyes glued to the television, fists clinched.

My team over yours.

Who will reign supreme?

I maintain a great advantage — since my buddy is ALSO a Chargers fan, we outnumber said Dolphins guy two to one.

So at least if we lose I’ll have one of my buddies on my side still to back up our team and help me make excuses.

In a nutshell, it was not the Chargers’ day on the field.

They were demolished and it was a complete embarrassment.

I was quite unhappy, and that is an understatement.

Guess who was superman that game?

The Dolphins quarterback, the opposing quarterback, who at times can play well but is inconsistent.

He threw three touchdowns, and guess who started said Dolphins quarterback that week on their fantasy squad?

My long time friend and thought-to-be ally.

Boy, was I ever wrong. I am the one that is now outnumbered. Now there are TWO Dolphins fans (of course, one is a fraud) in the living room.

As I am moping away, both of them sit with a smirk on their face. His Internet points reigned supreme in level of importance — forget about loyalty and allegiance.

Just get those Internet points, baby.

Now I’m sitting through double the cheers each time the Dolphins score. My roommate even went as far as to take his Chargers jersey off.


Now I will admit, playing fantasy football is quite addicting because it is actually pretty fun. It’s fun to beat your friends and adjust your roster each week. Heck, I’ve even won a couple of fantasy football championships.

However, it will never cause me to root against my actual team I root for week in and week out.

If I have Peyton Manning on my fantasy team and I need two touchdowns to win my fantasy match, and he happens to be playing the Chargers, I am going to hope that he throws none. Because he is the enemy and the division rival.

This is where my dilemma is. Fantasy football may take my friends, but it will not take me.

I will remain true and loyal to my team; Internet points can take a seat.

I will mention that I am glad the fantasy football leagues end right before the actual playoffs.

I can sit and enjoy the games without any type of repercussion outside of these games in regards to my Internet teams and points.

Fantasy sports are popular, especially among students here at SDSU, but we need to remind each other to just enjoy the sport at the end of the day.

Just get it all out of your system for a couple of years if you’ve never played fantasy, and then go back to enjoying the sport for the sport, and not for your Web points.