Welcome To The 2024 NFFC Season -- Our 21st!!

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Greg Ambrosius
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Joined: Tue Apr 06, 2004 6:00 pm

Welcome To The 2024 NFFC Season -- Our 21st!!

Post by Greg Ambrosius » Thu Apr 04, 2024 10:37 am

I know that we've been hosting online drafts for the last three months already, but I'd like to use this post to officially welcome everyone back to the NFFC for the 2024 season -- our 21st season together!!

If you know the history of the NFFC then you know that high-stakes fantasy football was never a guarantee with us. We created the industry's first high-stakes baseball contest in 2002, couldn't work out a partnership with the WCOFF in 2003 and decided to create the National Fantasy Baseball Championship in the Fall of 2003. That first 2004 season was a financial loss for Krause Publications, but the interest was strong enough for the company to give us the green light for the NFFC in April of 2004.

Since we had created a tough 15-team format in baseball, and since WCOFF already had a stranglehold on the 12-team format, I decided to create a 14-team format called the NFFC Classic and we debuted it with a $200,000 grand prize. We eventually learned that the 14-team format was NOT as popular as the 12-team format, lowered the grand prize to $100,000 and finished the first year with 224 teams. It was another financial bloodbath for our parent company, but they stuck with us and gave us one more year to turn things around.

Baseball took off in Year 2 and the NFBC Main Event has now sold out for 20 straight years. We have topped revenue in baseball every single year since 2004 (except for Covid of 2020) and this year we were up over $400,000 in revenue from last year. The NFFC Classic continued to grow in subsequent years and when we added the NFFC Primetime in 2008 it opened up a new revenue stream. That led to the Online Championship in 2009 and the NFFC has continued to grow every year since 2004, having awarded almost $50 million in prize money since our first year.

Last year we awarded over $6 million in prize money to NFFC players and we hope to exceed that total this year. We will host Live Events in New York City and Las Vegas again this year and we expect our Online business to continue to grow thanks to our eight national championships and an array of 10-team, 12-team and 14-team offerings. Enjoy everyone and best of luck in all your leagues this year.

While we are excited for the upcoming season, we can't move forward without addressing the elephant in the room. At the end of last year, it was discovered that an employee altered the starting lineups of two NFFC post-season teams involving one owner after lineups had locked. Once it was brought to our attention of what happened and we verified it, we fired the employee, locked out the owner involved from all of his teams and all contests going forward, and hired US Integrity to do a thorough audit of our past transactions, dating back to 2018 contests.

That audit is in its third month now, but is coming to a conclusion. We certainly wouldn't be pushing forward in baseball and football the way we have been if we thought we had anything to hide or if we thought the audit would expose an array of problems. We are confident the audit will show that this was an isolated incident from one employee and that appropriate actions have been taken. We also are putting in place systems that will make the NFFC the safest place to play in the industry and we hope other game operators follow our lead. There's too much money involved in all of our contests to not put these safeguards in place going forward and we certainly are going to do it.

I look forward to the audit being announced soon so that we can move forward together. I certainly understand the trepidation from some folks, but I'm confident that the audit will address what happened in the past and that we'll be able to announce these new safeguards very soon so that everyone feels comfortable playing in the NFFC again.

Our baseball folks certainly do. We had another record-breaking season in the NFBC and for the first time ever we'll be awarding over $5 million in prize money in 2024. The live events at the Mirage Las Vegas were the best in our 21 years and the camaraderie was off the charts. I thank all of our baseball folks for the trust and support they put in us before the report was announced and they know we won't let them down. Now we need to do the same in football.

Once US Integrity announces their findings, we'll post here as well. Trust me, we await this report even more than you do.

In case you haven't heard yet, we hired Geoff Stein from MyFantasyLeague.com to join myself, Tom Kessenich and Brian Bolf on our staff. Geoff has run The Fantasy Championship with MFL.com and RT Sports these last 13 years and he's a perfect fit for the NFFC and all of our other contests. He will be filling and watching a lot of nightly drafts this season and he will also be joining us at Park MGM in Las Vegas Sept. 4-8. Make sure you give him a hearty welcome and don't be afraid to buy him a beer and chat with him in Las Vegas. He's going to be a big help to the NFFC and I think we'll have a record year with his addition (email is [email protected]).

We are bullish on the upcoming season and thus kept our two $250,000 grand prizes where they were at last year. We know that we have to get past what happened during the post-season contests, but again we feel the support out there and we are confident that the audit will verify what we already know. So let's move forward together and make this another special year in the NFFC.

As for changes to 2024 in the NFFC, we are exploring the addition of slow drafts for our Rotowire Online Championship. Geoff has experience with them at TFC and slow drafts were 18% of total signups there last year. Every other contest in the high-stakes space is offering them in this format, so I feel confident that if we add them to the Online Championship that it will help us grow there and still keep the competition just as fair. We won't start these slow drafts before the NFL Draft and we'll end them in August. As for adding them to any other NFFC contests, that's still a discussion we are having now.

Anyway, welcome to the 2024 NFFC season and feel free to email me at [email protected] if you have any questions or comments about anything involving the NFFC. We have always been open and transparent about everything we do and now is no time to change. We look forward to the season ahead and I can't wait to meet everyone who comes to Park MGM in Las Vegas. The competition is going to be off the charts and I know the camaraderie will be great again, too. See you there or maybe just in the online draft rooms, but best of luck and thanks again for all your support through the years. Good luck.
Founder, National Fantasy Football Championship & National Fantasy Baseball Championship
Twitter: @GregAmbrosius

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