Aug 7, 2010
As I said in a previous post, I am not exactly great in terms of planning site enhancements, but as anyone in this kind of business (or anything tech-wise) can appreciate, when you think something’s going to take a month, it’s probably going to take 2 ½ months. And as I write this, there has yet to be a single preseason game played, so we’re not incredibly late on our 2010 improvements and enhancements (and several of them were rolled out months ago).
I wanted to remind people that very soon we’ll be rolling out a redesign of MyGuru. This is going to be WAY better in terms of ease of use, functionality, and aesthetics. HOWEVER, it will require us to clear out everyone’s pre-set scoring systems, teams, etc. It’s the only way to make it happen. But the good news is you’ll find that adding and removing players (which was cumbersome before) is a breeze. It’ll all be worth it, trust me.
In addition, I hope to introduce our new fantasy game next week. It’s an in-season game, so there’s no huge rush, but I’m really excited about it. We’ve polled people for three years to see if they’d be interested to play against other subscribers in our community and the response has been overwhelming. It’s a weekly salary cap contest. Each week will be its own contest. The fees are minimal, and the cash prizes are very good. In addition, there’s a grand prize to the team that scores the most points for the whole year that may blow you away. We’re going to roll it out soon because we’ll be offering a special “Season Pass” subscription rate. This will be a discounted price that will gain you access to all 17 weeks of the contest – and it will give you the best (and probably the only) chance to win the grand prize. There are a couple of other cool aspects that will be known soon, but I wanted to give a heads up. If you’re looking for another league or contest this year, you should probably stop your search and just roll with us in 2010.
But the point of today’s post is to “soft launch” a new little mock draft engine we’re offering to subscribers, courtesy of our friends at myfantasyleague.com. This one was kind of a last-minute deal, so I thank them for helping us out and getting it rolling for us. However, since it’s a last-minute offering, it’s not perfect, and I’m not sure it’s flaws will be corrected, since it’s crunch time for everyone in this biz. The biggest issue is probably that there are no fantasy defenses in the mix. That’s a buzz kill, but since we’re big on waiting on our DTs this year, it’s not the end of the world. It’s definitely good enough to use and for readers to gather and mock.
Here are some more specifics:
Drafts take place at 9 AM, 3 PM, and 9 PM Eastern every single day, with multiple options for each time-slot: PPR, non-PPR, IDP, and teams from 8 to 16.
The idea behind this tool, of course, is not just to help out our subscribers by offering a place to draft with other FG.com users, but also to increase the sense of community on the message boards, hoping to have users band together to plan and run these drafts themselves, using our message boards for communication. But you can go in any day and play around with it yourself and practice drafting.
Here’s how the drafts work:
- Go to http://www2.myfantasyleague.com/mockdrafts/gurumocks.php. If the current time is between 9 PM–9 AM Eastern, you’ll see a list of drafts set up for 9 AM. If you’re between 9 AM–3 PM Eastern, you’ll see a list for 3 PM. And if you’re between 3 PM-9 PM Eastern, you’ll see a list for 9 PM. Simple.
- In the top left corner of the screen, enter a team name and an e-mail address. Once “registering,” you’ll be sent an e-mail shortly before the draft detailing the draft, how to reconnect if you encounter any problems, and how to evaluate your draft after the fact. Once you enter a team name and a valid e-mail address, you can select your desired draft position in any of the drafts, and then click “Enter Draft.” This will redirect you to a waiting room. If you leave the waiting room at any time, your draft position will be free for the taking, so either don’t leave, or make sure you get right back in as soon as you can.
Note: There is some question as to the reliability of the e-mail mentioned above being delivered. Check your junk mail folder, but you don’t need to get the e-mail to use this tool if you stay on the draft site.
Once drafters are in the waiting room, they will be redirected to the live draft once the start time (9 AM, 3 PM, 9 PM) rolls around. If any draft spots are unfilled, the draft room will automatically draft based on current ADP data. So, in theory, you could draft by yourself in any slot of your choosing. From the point the draft starts, it works like any MFL live draft (for more information about this and anything else about MFL, head to http://football.myfantasyleague.com/2010/support).
The point is to create a simple and quick place for our subscribers to gather when they get “the draft itch,” which is certainly prevalent around this time of year. Utilizing the message boards to organize and plan these drafts is our ultimate goal, but as we mentioned above, you can choose to draft alone with multiple computerized teams. As for our involvement, we’d like to analyze any drafts that go particularly well, just like we’ve be doing with our “old” method.
But feel free to chat with people on the MBs and try to coordinate mocks at the aforementioned times.
I know this setup isn’t perfect, but hopefully it’s still useful enough and you’re able to work around it and do some mocking.