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Interview With Fantasy4Charity and Ricky Williams

First, I would like to take the time to introduce Playoff Bound Sports new partner, Fantasy4 Charity. We have created a partnership between the two sites and are joining up with them to help spread the word about their charity.

Also, this post is not just about introducing our new business partners, but we have also taken the time to interview both Rod Smith, the chief executive officer of Fantasy4Charity and Ricky Williams the Miami Dolphins running back.

Rod will be giving us some insight on what Fantasy4Charity is all about and who they help and Ricky will be telling us about why he chose to partner up with Fantasy4Charity and about what he expects of the Dolphins in the upcoming year.

Here is what Rod had to say:

Brant Houghton: How did this charity get started?

Rod Smith: Helping Hands for Freedom is a start up national charity that I founded in December of 2008. After 18 years of serving communities throughout the country through mentorship programs and sports camps, I decided it was my duty to focus on helping our military families.

The traditional way of building a charity through building a board and relying on their circle of influence, creating signature event(s) such as a golf tournament, and submitting grant request to multiple sources, is far more difficult than ever before due to the economy.
I had to think ‘out-of-the-box’ and took to the internet for research. I found a story about how President Obama successfully generated donations from college students. He was able to convince college students to donate $10 a month for multiple months that generated millions of dollars for his presidential campaign. He truly revolutionized the art of fund development.
This led to the question, “How can I get millions of people to give Helping Hands for Freedom $10 each?”

As I continued my research on the internet, I came across a story about the continued growth of Fantasy Sports and that the industry has now reached over 33 million participants. This was the ‘nitch’ I was looking for.

BH: So what are your companies goals for the upcoming years?

RS: Ricky and everyone involved set a goal to generate 10,000 participants in the first year. From there, we hope to add other sports and continue developing relationships with the fantasy sports community and build something that help millions of people. The sky is the limit. We appreciate your help in spreading the word to your followers.

BH: Besides the fantasy football, are you holding any benefits or parties that raise money for the charity?

RS: We have all kinds of things in motion. Our hope is that Ricky’s popularity in Miami , Texas , andSouthern California will allow us to generate as many participants as possible. Once we start confirming events and gatherings to promote the fantasy football game, we will be posting the information on our website: www.fantasy4charity.com

BH: What are your expectations for the charity after you are all said and done?

RS: That is simple; Help as many military families and children as possible.

BH:  Are you looking to add any other football players to the charity?

RS: Our long term goal is to add other athletes to build support in NFL communities throughout the country.

BH: Why and how did you come to Ricky to be the face of this charity?

I met Ricky through a friend of mine in San Diego , Renie Colwell. She works with him regarding his off field endeavors and after sharing with him the idea to help military children who have lost their fathers to the war through a fantasy football game, Ricky actually offered to help and be a part of the venture. He has been a part of designing the logo and reviewing the content for the website and has his own ideas on marketing the RapidDraft game through Fantasy4Charity. Being from San Diego and understanding the plight of military families due to Camp Pendleton and the large population of service members living there, he plans on being as active as his busy football life will allow him to be through interviews, blogging, twittering, and some appearances in Miami .  We are grateful to have Ricky involved and we feel very fortunate to have his support.

 BH: The fantasy football leagues are very cheap and have a very high reward. how can your company afford to make the league so affordable to the average fan?

RS: Our partners, World Fantasy Games and the actual game, RapidDraft, have investors that funded the game’s development and management.  It’s a strategic game and we will be able to raise money for military families this year, next year, and for many years to come. By keeping the game at an affordable entry fee, we hope to attract 100’s of thousands of participants.

BH: It was a pleasure talking with you Rod, would you like to say anything else about your charity, or make any shout outs?

RS: Fantasy4Charity needs everyone’s help in spreading the word. Play fantasy football with us and help our great American heroes and the families left behind. You will be proud of the work we do in the community.

Now for the interview with Ricky:

Brant Houghton: How did you find this charity and who will the charity benefit?

Ricky Williams: Growing up in San Diego you learn about the military and what they sacrifice for our country during war time. A friend of mine presented this opportunity to help promote a fantasy football game where proceeds from the entry fee support the military families left behind. I spoke with the founder of Helping Hands for Freedom and here we are today. I am honored to help.

BH: So what are your expectations for Fantasy4Charity?

RW: We have set a goal to get 10,000 players between the season game, weekly game, and a playoff game. This will give us a great foundation to build upon for the future.

BH: What motivated you to help out this charity and be the face of this charity?

RW: Again, as I mentioned earlier, helping military families is the least I can do. The charity really focuses on the children of military service members which is especially important to me.

BH: Are you signed up to play Rapid Draft?

RW: Yes and I love the game.

BH: What would you say to all of the fantasy players out there on why they should draft you instead of the rest of the running backs out there?

RW: You never know what the season brings but I have produced yards and touchdowns over the years and when my number is called I plan on taking it to the “house”. The Dolphins know they can count on me.

BH: Speaking of the Dolphins, what are your expectations for this Dolphins team?

RW: The whole culture of our team has changed since our new coaching staff has taken over. Coach Parcells is a great man with an incredible football mind. The Dolphins are in good hands and we expect to compete for the division title and then a chance for the Super Bowl. Anything can happen once you make it to the playoffs.

BH: What are your personal goals for the upcoming season?

RW: To help the Dolphins and my teammates in any manner in which I’m called upon and to continue to be there for my family and friends.

BH: You said earlier this off-season that you are only going to play two more years in the NFL. What are your plans after your career is over?

RW: I’m earning a degree in pre-med and plan to go to graduate school to study osteopathy so that I may heal, teach and nurture others.

BH: Has training camp been any tougher this year than the previous ones in your career?

RW: For veterans, training camp is a necessary evil. Every training camp is hard and physical.

 BH: What has been the key to the sudden success of the Dolphins? I mean, going from 1-15 to 11-5 is some turnaround!

RW: I believe it starts from the top and works its way down to the coaching staff. The NFL talent is so amazing that if you can bring a team together and get them believing in each other, anything is possible in the NFL.

BH:  Good luck in the upcoming season and is there anybody that you would like to shout out to?

RW: I would like to give a shout out to the service members and their families. We love you and thank you for protecting our freedom.

So as you can see, both Rod and Ricky are pretty passionate about this charity and both of them, as well as Playoff Bound Sports are excited for the upcoming fantasy season. If you are not already, make sure you sign up to play Rapid Draft here!

I would like to thank both Rod and Ricky for taking the time out of there busy days to answer some of our questions!


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