Clearly the NFL is taking some lessons from the tobacco industry here: Hook ’em while they’re young and you’ll get ’em for life. However, the NFL is clearly better than big tobacco, they don’t want to give kids a product that could kill them, they just want to teach them how to gamble and waste time in the workplace.
In a Wall Street Journal Q&A with the NFL’s chief marketing officer Mark Waller, Waller stated the position that the NFL believes the children are our future, and in order to create a new generation of fans, and one of the best ways to get kids hooked on the pigskin early is to teach them about Fantasy Football. In schools. During Math class.
“How do you want to use fantasy football to market to kids?”
“We want to make sure that at the younger age, there’s a format for fantasy and a way to play that will allow you to engage. But also use it educationally. It’s a complex game, fantasy. You should be able to learn a lot, particularly around math. How many points do I need? How many points does this player get? We’re also trying to work with groups to get the concept of fantasy based into the curriculum of elementary schools. If you love football and you teach them math through football, the chances are you may teach them better math and more quickly.“
That’s not half bad, actually. Beats the crap out of whatever the hell else I learned in math class. I mean, I sure as hell haven’t had to solve for X or figure out what the fuck a hypotenuse is in over half a decade, but I definitely needed to calculate PPR on the fly. Maybe if my school taught me how to cover the spread, I wouldn’t have even NEEDED school. I’d have Mayweather money.