I'm aware of the "slow draft". I'm also aware of using a yahoo group. Others will say "go to CBS Sportsline... Yahoo sucks!" But I'm looking for some other ideas on how you draft in your league since (thus far) Yahoo doesn't have any means of assisting with keepers.
I've thought quite possibly of creating a private chat room to hold the draft. I'm not sure if this will work.
In my leagues where we don't draft in person, we spend the first few rounds of the draft selecting our keepers before the redraft begins. You just have to make sure that no donkey drafts someone else's keepers.
You could just hold a live draft and have everyone select their keepers first, and like ken said, make sure no one is a doofus. I have heard things about ESPN's free fantasy having some sort of keeper option, not sure to what extent though.
Yahoo PLUS is what we are planning on this season in my keeper league. I preferred CBS, but we went with Y! Plus....and it is not a bad deal. For $125, everyone gets Stat-tracker and other research tools, and it allows the commish to load rosters prior to a live draft.
We keep 12/25 from season to season, so I am hopeful this works well. IIRC, everyone does have to keep the same # of players though.
We submit our keepers (due by Valentines day). Then we have a one month long slow draft on a message board. We use Proboards.com when it's your turn to draft you get 3 hours to pick and if you haven't picked by then the next person can pick and the person who missed their pick can jump back in at any time. This alone, gives people the incentive to check in once or twice a day, or to send a list of picks to someone else in the league to make the pick for them. We did this last year and nobody got skipped. Most people made their pick(s) well before the 3 hour time limit and everything went well. In our league we use the round a player was drafted in, as something similiar to a players salary in an auction league. If a player was drafted in the 10th round, you can keep him for up to three more years at the end of the season but for every year you keep the player beyond one year he gets bumped up one round. This means that when you have the next years draft a player drafted in the 10th round, kept for three years will be slotted in as your 8th round draft pick in the next draft. Therefore you won't make a pick in the 8th round as you have a keeper slotted there. It's slightly complicated, but it allows you to do non-auction drafts (drafts where everyone can't meet at the same time), but have a similiar team management issues, ie - which players are the biggest bargain. I don't like keeper leagues where you just keep X number of players, with all teams having to keep the same number of keepers then you pre-input those players into Yahoo or have each team pre-rank their keepers and do the live draft from there. I'd prefer a re-draft to that. We are entering our 3rd year using this system.
Last year's 27 round draft took four weeks. So basically, one round per day. Some days more and some days less. Not sure what you call it, but it works for us. We usually have one guy with too much free time on his hands who can speed things up by emailing people or calling them when it's their turn.
In one of my keeper leagues, last year we submitted our keepers, then held the draft at Mock draft central. The commish was later responsible for submitting the results to Yahoo. It worked out great. Assuming your commish is not afraid of the extra work.
The glass is neither half full nor half empty... It is simply a glass
We do the same as bigken for both baseball and football. We make sure everybody preranks their guys in case of a problem, and just use the first 6 rounds to take our keepers and then go right into the draft. I don't think we've had a problem with that in the 4 or 5 years we've been doing the league. (Now, people drafting other peoples minor leaguers, that's another story)