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Score with Ashley Russell

The world of fantasy sports just got a lot more interesting

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A sexy babe who loves fantasy football?

Talk about an MFer's perfect woman. We caught up with Yahoo! Sports' reporter Ashley Russell to find out why more women are starting up their own fantasy leagues. And don't forget to check out Ashley's hot photo gallery.

Have you always been interested in fantasy sports?
Most women are very intimidated by [fantasy sports], but a friend of mine, who's been playing for 10 years, was like, "You have got to do this." So I got a group of girls together; some were former models who were my friends. We signed up for a fantasy football league and did a draft at my house-last year was my first year playing, this is my second year-and I could not get over how addictive it was. I made cheat sheets for the girls as well, thinking, 'They're not going to be paying a lot of attention.' Turns out, we were all out for blood. There were catfights. I'm still not talking to one of the girls. It was insane. I think girls can be even worse than guys. Guys can brush it off and say, 'Dude, that's not right' and then they're over it. Women are a different story.

Most guys would never guess that women could be that hardcore when it comes to fantasy sports.
With the smack talk going on, the catfights, the draft night - I thought some girls were going to have to go at it outside. I'm probably exaggerating a little, but not much. It became so competitive and I think women-especially if they're playing against guys-are going to be even more competitive because they've got more to prove.

If women started to dominate a fantasy football league, would guys be intimidated or impressed?
Oh, intimidated-absolutely. Guys want to keep thinking that this is their game. The truth is, it's not anymore.

Do men find it easier to approach women who are interested in sports?
One time, these guys were so intimidated to come to our table because they saw my girlfriend and I wearing jerseys and yelling at the TV screen. They were like, 'Whoa! What's going on over here?' But this is a whole new turn-on for men: women who can hold their own in a conversation about sports. My friends and I have gotten marriage proposals because of it! Another friend said that it was the best thing that happened to her relationship with her boyfriend. Now, she will get in the car and listen to sports talk radio on long trips.

How can a guy get his girlfriend interested in sports?
Some guys join 10 different leagues. I think it would be nice if they would ask their girlfriends to participate. Show her the ins and outs. Honestly, it does open up the conversation in a relationship. And how many relationships fail because the guy wants to be in front of the TV every Sunday and Saturday, and the girl wants to do something else? So my advice: guys need to encourage their women to get involved - that way you have less to be nagged about. It's a good move on their part.

What are the things you look for in a guy?
Oh, the question of the day. When it comes to sports, I would, of course, love it if a guy can hold his own in a conversation. If he likes to go to football games-if he likes Big 10 basketball, even better. If men can be really loyal to a team-if he's a huge Yankees fan or whatever-that carries a lot of weight in life too. That might mean that he's a pretty honest and loyal guy. Some of my best guy friends are die-hard fans of whatever team, and they tend to be good guys. That carries over to relationships...if you show some loyalty, then you might get it back.


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