A CDRL history lesson

For those of you who spend time on our league website, you see on the home page our league name, the Craig Davis Rotisserie League.

You also see the league’s former name, The Al Neuharth Fantasy League of Rotisserie Baseball.

This brings up possible questions, like:

** Who is Al Neuharth?

** Who is Craig Davis?

** Who is this guy annoying us with this blog?

Let’s start with Neuharth. For those not in the newspaper business — and be darned glad you’re not — Al Neuharth had the original idea for USA Today. That’s the simple version. Neuharth died Friday at 89.

The league was named for him because it started at the Jackson (Tenn.) Sun, a newspaper in the Gannett chain, the same chain that featured USA Today.

Among the founding members was a gentleman named Craig Davis, a page designer for the Sun. According to commissioner emeritus James Overstreet, Davis was an unparalleled judge of talent and a Cubs fan (which seems on the surface to be an oxymoron).

“He was Kerry on steroids,” Overstreet said, “except he didn’t trade willy nilly. He was a master judge of talent and team building. His teams were drafted to win and they typically did.

“He never finished out of the money. I think his worst finish was fourth. Crazy good.”

Flying the flag of the Amoral Kiwis, Davis won titles in 1988, 1990 and 1991. The franchise changed names to the Nippon Spam Fighters and took championships in 1996, 1998 and 1999. If you’re scoring at home (or even if you’re alone), that’s six titles in 12 years.

And for those who show up with notebooks, magazines, scouting guides, computer projections, draft software and, yes, even refrigerator boxes, Davis kept it simple.

“He never once had a piece of paper, magazine, list — let alone a computer — at the auction,” Overstreet said.

That kind of dominance takes a toll. Davis relinquished commissionership, handing it over to Overstreet in 2002. His last year as an owner was 2003, although he served as auction master at the 2006 auction.

Gary Robinson posted at 2013-4-22 Category: Baseball

3 Responses Leave a comment

  1. #1Dave Memphis MOJO @ 2013-4-22 12:11 Reply

    Fascinating stuff. Thanks for the post.

  2. #2Wayne (Hamm's Bears) @ 2013-4-22 13:21 Reply

    Kerry on steroids?!? Oh, the humanity!
    And thanks for the gratuitous Cubs shot, by the way. ..

  3. #3Justin (Usual Suspects) @ 2013-4-22 18:15 Reply

    Good stuff. Made me think of a quote about Alexander the Great and how he wept when there were no more lands for him to conquer.

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