I am the commissioner of a 10-12 team (varies from year to year) roto league. I consider myself a pretty dedicated owner, but still struggle to keep interest through the end of the season, even if I'm in contention. Some teams out of contention start missing line-ups after the all-star break. I'm trying to think of different ways that can make the season more interesting throughout the whole year. We are a $50 league, and currently pay out $5 a week for that weeks top team, which I manually calculate in excel each week. This doesn't appear to be much of a motivation. I've had two thoughts. One, replace $5 weekly top teams, with $20 monthly top teams. Hoping $20 may be a little more incentive than the $5. Another thought I had would be to split the season into 2 seasons, either roughly 81 games in, or at the all-star break. There would be a first half winner, we would all redraft, and then there would be a second half winner, with maybe the champion being the team with the most roto points comibned from the two half-seasons. I don't know if there are any sites that allow you to do a draft that late in the season though. The draft is by far and away the best part of the season, and it'd be sweet to do it more than once. I also though about doing the full season as normal, with $500 in payouts which will be played out till the end. And then doing a 2nd chance draft at the all-star break, where all players are drafted, but only $100 of payouts going to that league. Almost like a consolation bracket in head-to-head, but one in which all members participate in. What are your thoughts? Does anyone do anything like this now or know of a site which would accomodate? A free one would likely be essential. Or does anyone do anything else?
I had this same dilemma that plagues all fantasy ballers. I run a 12 team, 8 keeper. I decided we would change up the draft to change our competition for the entire year. So far, it is working for 80-85% of the league.
Of the twelve teams, the top 5 teams are given special recognition for reaching the top 5 every year. Its a distinguished virtual award that stays in their espn trophy room.
They drop down to the bottom of the draft in normal reverse snake order of the next draft, 8th-12th draft slots.
The bottom 7 finishers, 6th-12th-placed teams move up to the top of the draft order and stay in the same order.
The idea is that the bottom seven teams need to continue to compete the whole season. If they don't, then it makes for a boring and non-competitive season for the majority of the players, both still in it and those "out of it". This gives them an incentive to fight for the #1 draft spot.
The 10-15% or the 10th-12th finishers either really got slammed with injuries, had personal life issues, or need to get the boot and replaced due to inactivity.
Monthly sidepools (best record for the month/most improved month to month) 1st and 2nd half winners (in addition/seperate from overall winners) Category sidepools (most SB gets a cut, most K gets a cut) Reverse category sidepools (everyone splits x amount as long as they a) arent in last overall and b) arent last in any category) deincentive payments for whoever finishes in last or x amount of bottom teams - they have to kick in extra next year (IF you ever go to money but without money im sure you can come up with some other penalty..lose a draft pick? public humiliation? winner gets the right to rename his team next year??) draft lottery for the next year best of the worst teams gets more ping pong balls so to speak "Rule 5 draft" at some point in the season (all star break?) everyone cuts a few players and you change waiver order to a new order to "help" the bad teams adjust and give them hope..if you take a snapshot of the waiver order you can reset it back to normal after those players clear
Those are just some, if I think of others will post..some may sound good or terrible just throwing it all out there
"I'm the man with the ball. I'm the man who can throw it faster than F***. So that's why I'm better than anyone in the world." - Kenny Powers
10 team 5x5 league with $50 buy in and (assumed no league fee like ESPN).
$500 to split, so Top 3 place at 200, 100, 50. That leaves $150 to play with for incentive.
Considering there are generally 6 months (March combines with April, October with September) for $25 for having the best "month."
I'd assume most people would be very active with the opportunity to win back half their money for a hot month and if they have a hot two months, they won their money back and don't even have to place to do it. At a minimum, you'd see more activity in the beginning and end of months for people contending for an extra $25.
Of course, if you have owners who just never pay attention my recommendation is to replace them. Nothing burns me more than seeing someone who starts on the DL the first month of the season get benched all season because the owner abandoned their team. As a Commish, without an explanation why that happened that is reasonable (moved, computer fried, deployed or some other such thing), that person is not invited back next season.
1) We upped our (former) $60 league to $100 in 2012 and $200 in 2013. This makes it more painful to "give up" during the season, and has weeded out a casual owner. 2) We changed our draft order from the reverse order of standings, which rewards teams for tanking it, to an order that motivates teams to stay involved. Our Top 3 win money, so they pick 10th, 9th, and 8th, respectively. 4th place picks first. 5th place picks second, etc. Make sense? So if you finish in the money, you pick last. Otherwise, you pick in the order of finish.
In my money league, we have a "most improved" award, based on everyone's points at the halfway mark. If nothing else, teams at the bottom or who have been decimated by injuries and are getting healthy in the second half have a reason to keep playing. Most improved paid out $100 last season, which was the buy-in for the league. Some money leagues can be matter-of-fact about the numbers/money (especially if owners are playing in 5-10 other money leagues) so sometimes you'll just have owners like that....if they're not in the money they don't care too much.
For non-money league, I find that simple communication works quite well. I have a 20-team roto league and we have a chatbox (Cbox is our service) where a lot of guys post, talk smack, complain, joke around, etc. I find that some of the most active guys are the ones at the very top and bottom. No one likes a league where no one ever says anything. It's more fun to have a owner you really like or think is funny, or a guy that's just a punk and you're gunning for him. It's a game of numbers, but the people make it fun. You have to make sure it doesn't get out of hand, but I think it makes a league much more interesting when there are personalities to the teams.
I also change the home page headlines a lot and post new photos or themes once a week or so. I also highlight the battle for the top ten (who's just in and who's just out), who's trending in a big way...things that let the owners know their efforts (or lack thereof) are seen and appreciated. I also do a monthly/quarterly "Power Rankings" on how a team is doing and what their prospects are moving forward. It takes a lot of time as a commish, but I've found it builds a loyal and owner ownership and most of the teams in my 20-team league say it's one of their favorite (if not favorite) leagues. Takes a lot of work though.
We have a "punitive" payout structure. The 4th place team owes $68, the 5th place team owes $73, the sixth place team owes $78. The lower you finish, the more you owe.
However, the most you can lose is $110. In a league of gainfully employed people with families, other leagues, hobbies, etc. the punitive system doesn't really motivate the guy who lost interest or who is really busy with work, their family, etc.