The 2013 Fantasy Bishball Season has officially begun. Twenty-four bishops have been selected by their respective teams, and each manager is confident that their team is the one that will emerge as the John Henry Cardinal Newman Memorial Cup winner.
Not if the defending champion Crusading Croziers have anything to say about it, though. Manager LarryD is very excited with his team’s revamped line-up. Anchoring the team is 2012 MVB winner Bishop Coyne, along with last year’s teammate Cardinal Wuerl. Two new faces – rookies, in fact – join them: Bishop Jenky and Archbishop Kurtz.
“Both players are the complete package,” manager LarryD told AoftheA News. “They have all the tools. I think we have a very solid team, and will compete hard every week. I’m going to say right now that Archbishop Kurtz is the pre-season favorite to win Rookie of the Year. He’s that good.”
Archbishop Kurtz will have plenty of competition at the season’s end – a total of 10 rookies were selected this year, four more than last year. With that many rookies, that meant some veterans were left on the bench this time around, including Archbishop Carlson, Cardinal Burke and last year’s Rookie of the Year runner-up Archbishop Sample.
Some of the new players this season include Bishop Farrell, Cardinal O’Malley, Cardinal DiNardo and Archbishop Jackels.
Along with the rosters full of rookies, the 2013 season also features a new team – the Dubuque Fighting Saints. Although technically they’re not “new”, as they fielded a team in the ill-fated first season, and were unable to compete in 2012. They take the place of the Mighty Mitres, who could not participate this season.
“I’m happy to be back this season,” said their manager Al007Italia, who blogs at Is Anybody There? “There’s some unfinished business from that first season, and though I’m in a tough conference with the Hierarchs and the Hunters, I like my chances.”
The Fighting Saints had the first overall pick – as the other teams had each protected a player from last season – and they selected Archbishop Jackels of Dubuque. “It would’ve been strange if some other team had taken Jackels, seeing as how my team is from Dubuque,” Al explained. “And given that the former president of the LCWR is in his archdiocese, there’s a possibility he could be issuing an excommunication soon.”
“Bishop Irrelevant” this draft – the bishop chosen with the last pick in the 4th round – was Archbishop Listecki, by the Zealous Zucchettos. “He was on my team last season, and was a consistent performer,” Manager Burmy told AoftheA Sports. “I was happy to see he was still available when my pick came around. Along with Gomez, Dolan, and last year’s Rookie of the Year O’Connell – I think it’s the right line-up to challenge the Croziers for first in the Eastern Conference.”
Below are the full rosters for all six teams:
Almighty Acolytes: Lori, DiNardo, Farrell, Sartain
Crusading Croziers: Coyne, Wuerl, Kurtz, Jenky
Dubuque Fighting Saints: Jackels, Morlino, Nickless, Malloy
Heresy Hunters: Gracida, Slattery, Etienne, Coakley
Rocky Mountain Hierarchs: Chaput, O’Malley, Aquila, Conley
Zealous Zucchettos: Gomez, Dolan, O’Connell, Listecki
The regular season will conclude August 4, with the playoffs immediately following. The John Henry Cardinal Newman Memorial Cup will be presented to the championship team on August 18.