FSWA Gets Hall of Fame Process Rolling

We first passed along the news more than a year ago that the Fantasy Sports Writers Association was putting together a hall of fame. Frankly, it’s a concept that the group has been kicking around for much longer than that.

Well, this month, the whole process is really getting going. The FSWA has begun collecting applications for candidates to constitute the first Hall of Fame class. FSWA President Mike Beacom said that the initial hope was to wrap up the nomination process at the end of May, but that the window is likely to be extended.

“The No. 1 priority of this process is to do things the right way,” he said in the May newsletter. “As was the case with our writing awards, I expect we’ll learn a few things this first year and use those lessons to grow in future years.”

There probably is no single right way to launch the first year of voting and determine the inaugural class. Although fantasy sports have only fairly recently leaped into the public conscious, there are many people who have been working hard for years to advance the field — and the knowledge of their readership.

“We have a lot of Emmitt Smiths and Jerry Rices,” Beacom told FSB.com, referring to the number of first-ballot quality candidates that the FSWA’s Hall committee must sift through.

Beacom acknowledges that probably not everybody who deserves to get in right away will do so in the first year. If the FSWA wedged 20 or so fantasy veterans into this first group, what would that mean for year two or three.

Although the association hasn’t settled on an exact count for the first class, it has always been keen to limit the numbers enough to make selection a special honor for each set of inductees.

To be eligible, any candidate must have at least 10 years of experience in the editorial field of fantasy sports. (This is, after all, a fantasy writing hall of fame rather than one meant to encompass the industry.) Candidates can be nominated by someone else or submit their own entry, which would be preferable in most cases.

“A few people have expressed concern over the self-nominating process, but here is why it’s important: no one knows one’s history better than that person,” Beacom stated in the newsletter. “The goal is to educate our committee members so that they can fill out their ballots.”

That committee is made up of FSWA members who don’t sit on the association’s board. The committee will whittle the total list of applicants down to a group of finalists. A candidate will need to appear on a certain percentage of ballots in the next round of voting to earn a spot in the class. That threshold has yet to be set, but the FSWA has enlisted the help of a college statistics professor to create a proper formula.

FSB.com will be sharing the names of candidates, finalists and, of course, honorees as they become available.


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