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So today I was thinking about adapting Techno Bowl to run as a college football league rather than as a pro league, because the regular roster turnover in college football makes roster-building a lot more interesting.
I don't know if Brent has put any thought into a college variant, but I haven't seen any talk of one, so here were my thoughts:
You've got freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors. At the end of each season, your seniors leave the team and are replaced by incoming freshmen, and everybody else moves up a year. Your regular old plugs stay the same from year-to-year, but your "blue chip" players learn one new skill every off-season. In addition, any player with 3 skills declares for the draft and leaves your team early, so a "blue chip" player who has 2 skills as a freshman will add a 3rd skill at the end of the 1st season, and leave your team after just 2 years. You can only have a maximum of 3 "blue chip" prospects on your team at a time, but there's no limit on skills per team.
Every team must have one player of each skill number, (one player in the 30s, one player in the 40s, etc.). Your remaining 3 players can be any number you want (assuming you're able to recruit them).
Once you've removed your departing players, it's time for recruitment! How many players you need to generate depends on the size of your league, but you'll want enough to fill up everybody's roster, plus a few extra, and you'll want more 4s, 5s, and 6s available than 3s and 7s. In addition, you'll need to designate a few of your recruits as "blue chip" prospects. Do it randomly, spread them out evenly among the skill numbers, whatever. Then give a couple of your blue-chippers a starting skill to make them extra-attractive, maybe even give one of them 2 skills if you're feeling crazy. Assuming you have an 8-team league with 20 roster spots open, generate 25-30 recruits; make 8-10 of them "blue chip", and give 3-4 of the "blue chip" players skills.
Every team gets 10 Recruitment Points, and assigns them to the recruits they want (keep your bids secret until everyone's bids are in). If you put the highest number of RPs on a player, you get to add him to your roster. In case of a tie, roll dice or draw names out of a hat to see who gets him. If you win bids on more players than you have roster spots, you get to pick the ones you want, and the ones you don't take go to the next-highest bidder. Once all recruited players have joined their new teams, teams who still have holes in their roster take turns picking from the remaining recruits until everyone's back up to 8 players. Remember that you can only have 3 "blue chip" players on your roster (those hot-shot high-schoolers are worried about their playing time!)
I'm also kicking around a Necromunda-style system of gaining new skills for your blue-chippers, so that rather than just picking any skill, you pick the relevant skill-type (running back, QB, linebacker, etc) and roll on a table to determine your player's new skill. For example, if you had a blue-chip player and you wanted to give him a QB skill, your table would be:
1 - Option
2 - Pitch
3 - Pocket Passer
4 - QB Read
5 - Route Passer
6 - Screen Passer
Roll 1d6, and your player gains the matching skill. If you roll a skill he already has, you get to choose any other skill on the list.
Let me know what y'all think, I'm interested in feedback/suggestions/criticism, and I'm curious as to whether or not this idea has legs.
Jason "J.T." Taylor
Because my wife is a born and raised Buckeye I've determined that at some point I'll make an OSU team. (however, with the recent loss to Penn St, I think I'll hold off a bit). I love the idea of college football. I'll admit, I think your idea is fun if you can get the right group. The only thing I'd change is that depending upon how you did that year you gain a number of skill points. And using the success scale (1-6 fail, 7-9, 10-12) you can spend skill points to modify rolls to help gain the skills you are looking for. If you roll doubles you get an epic skill (or two). Maybe something like that. I haven't thought it out well enough to make the scale but perhaps that inspires something else. Just a late night thought before I go to bed.
I'm interested to hear other thoughts! This could be modified to be part of the MFL too. Gotta draft them from somewhere, right?