Cashing in on fantasy football

TEXT OF STORY

SCOTT JAGOW: So who ya gonna draft? Larry Johnson? Shaun Alexander? If you have no idea what I'm talking about, you aren't playing fantasy football this season. But as Stacey Vanek-Smith tells us, lots of people are.


STACEY VANEK-SMITH: They're male, they're about 36, and they own their homes. Meet the 15 million people who have made fantasy sports into a $1.5 billion business.

That's according to a study from the University of Mississippi.

Now, this may have some spouses rolling their eyes, but it has advertisers drooling.

Bobby McCormick teaches sports economics at Clemson University.

BOBBY MCCORMICK: A lot of money's on the line. It heightens their demand to know details. It really does integrate the fan into the sport.

So advertisers are shelling out 7-figures to appear on the real-time game stats that ESPN will send to your cell phone and Fox will send to your computer.

DirecTV even put up the dough for ESPN to make every NFL game fully interactive with fantasy stats and injury updates.

I'm Stacey Vanek-Smith for Marketplace.

About the author

Stacey Vanek Smith is a senior reporter for Marketplace, where she covers banking, consumer finance, housing and advertising.

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