Or so says a professor out there who developed a curriculum on teaching fantasy football to students as a way of learning math. The curriculum was then picked up by a math teacher John Hagen at Foothill High School who implemented it et viola, you got ESPN suddenly filming you.
How it all works is that Hagen has the class divide into teams then given a certain amount of money to draft players. They then follow the season and keep score using all sorts of different algorithms to score and keep track. Good thing they haven't figured out CBS Sportsline can already do that. The winners of the season then get treated to a weekend in Vegas full of blackjack and strippers. Now wait, that's our fantasy league. The point of all this is to encourage students to use math in a fun way. Or as the guy who came up with all of this, Dan Flockhart said, to show how math could actually be applied to real world things. Flockhart, btw, wrote his thesis on fantasy football as a teaching aid and even wrote a book on the subject, "Fantasy Football and Mathematics.'' What the scoring is based on during the week is on what the teacher wants to focus on. If they can come up with a mathematical formula to explain how Tiki Barber could be leading the NFL in rushing yet not scoring a lot of points, we'd like them to drop us a line.
Hagen says the class is a success and people are actually doing their homework on Mondays. The students agree. Said one: "It's cool -- we get to keep up with the football players and stuff like that." Ah, makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside about the state of the educational system, doesn't it?
Picture from the San Jose Mercury