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So You Want to be a Fantasy Football Commissioner?

Whether you’re starting a new fantasy football league, joining an existing league, or have been in a league since before I was born (was fantasy football a thing in 1986?), we have all dealt with a league commissioner. 

Maybe you have a fantastic commish who does their best to keep league interest high and transactions fair. (ESPN used to have a Fantasy Football Commissioner of the Year. Our friend @DrKJMurray won in 2017!) 

Perhaps you have a terrible commish who sees your league as more of a dictatorship than a constitutional democracy. Or maybe, YOU are the league commissioner — you either started the league or someone suckered you into it (we’ve all been there).

Either way, you’re in a fantasy football league with someone at the helm. And so am I. However, I am also a new commissioner. Therefore, I decided to ask #FantasyFootballTwitter what they thought about being a league commissioner. 

The Roger Goodell of your Fantasy Football League

As usual, fantasy football Twitter did NOT hesitate to share their opinion on this matter. So, without further ado, here are some responses.

Pet Peeves as League Commissioner

People not paying their league dues on time

This was the overall consensus #1 pet peeve of league commissioners. Y’all. For the love of Vince Lombardi, PAY YOUR LEAGUE DUES ON TIME. Commissioners of paid leagues hate being the bad guy. We’re not your parent. We don’t want to nag you. We understand times are tough. So, if you can’t swing the fee, communication is key! Then, we can work something out.

Constant Criticism

Being league commissioner isn’t easy. It’s a big responsibility. So PLEASE, do not criticize the commissioners! It’s a hard, thankless job that pays exactly zero money.

Tanking … for Tua

Well, maybe not Tua anymore, but league tanking. If you’re not going to be an active participant in your league, why play?

Announcement time!

When your commish notifies you of a message on the message board — or in your home league group text — pay attention! They’re not telling you out of boredom, and what they’re trying to tell you is relevant to your league. (I’m terrible at this. I missed a roster cut deadline because I didn’t check the message board. Sorry, Russ!)

Character Traits of a Good Commissioner

Every Vote Counts!

When changing or creating rules/deadlines/whatever, put it to a vote. Remember, it’s a constitutional democracy, not a dictatorship.

Prep for Success

When setting up your league for a new season, ensure all your settings are in place BEFORE the draft. People use those settings to determine their draft strategy. DO NOT change league settings after a draft because you forgot to change them prior. Don’t penalize them for your error.

Communication is Key

When leaguemates come to you with questions or concerns, be willing and open to communication. It’s not always easy for people to come to you, so don’t make it harder.

The Golden Rule(s) of Being League Commissioner

It Is Decided

Once you have made a rule or ruling on an issue, don’t waffle. Instead, channel your inner Pete from The League

Rules are Important

Make life easier for yourself and your leaguemates — put your league rules in writing! This way, you don’t have to explain everything all the time, and they can have something to refer to when they inevitably forget.


Look. Just because you CAN do something doesn’t mean you SHOULD. Don’t push through trades that are explicit collusion. Also, don’t veto trades just because someone else got a player you wanted. That falls into, how did Ruxin put it? Oh, Yeah…

League First

When making decisions that affect the league, always put the league first. To quote Mr. Spock, “Logic clearly dictates that the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.” (And as Captain Kirk adds, “Or the one.”)

Party in the USA

Let. Your. League. Have. Fun! (But organized fun.)


Well, those are just a few of the pet peeves, good character traits, and golden rules of league commissioners. If you want to see all of the responses, click the tweet above. Good luck in your leagues this year, either as a commissioner or with your commissioner.

I leave you with one of my favorite replies to my tweet:

Thanks for reading! I usually stick to editing, but I always write ONE article a year, and it’s always about my Patriots. If you feel like reading it, you can do so here. Follow me on Twitter at @FF_LeapOfFaith, and, more importantly, go follow @WomenOf_FF!

Be sure to subscribe to the Club Fantasy FFL YouTube channel. Josh is always giving away signed player merch just for being subscribed.