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John T. Georgopoulos

Fantasy Sports Pioneer - John T. Georgopoulos

Who is John T. Georgopoulos?

Education and early career

John T. Georgopoulos graduated from the Bronx High School of Science in 1982, where he was classmates with Terence Tolbert, the late political operative for Barack Obama and Christopher “Kid” Reid, the rap musician and actor.

After four years at Fordham University, Georgopoulos graduated in 1986 with degrees in Computer Science and Biology. While still in university, his interest in meshing fantasy sports with computer science became evident as he created a fantasy wrestling game—dubbed Sgt. Slaughter’s Matwars—which was the basis for the formation of the Silverline Games entertainment company.

While working as a programmer for a bank in 1994, Georgopoulos produced a website, with the goal of learning HTML. He chose this forum to express his views on one of his favorite topics: professional football (the NFL).

Fantasy Sports Journalism career

Georgopoulos’ website received enough hits to encourage Georgopoulos to regularly update his commentary, as well as recruit former owners in his college roto leagues to provide additional content. By 1996, Gridiron Grumblings was born, one of the first independent sites of sports commentary.

The site received several industry awards, including Netscape’s “Cool Site of the Month” and “Cool Site of the Day“, a ‘Top Site’ recognition by Yahoo! Magazine, as well as a recommended site of FHM Magazine.

In 1998, drawing on his experience in FOREX markets and as a programmer, Georgopoulos designed the “Fantasy Forecast Rating System”, a ranking system to be used across all NFL positions, enabling the absolute valuation of players. Its success as a tool for fantasy football owners led to the concept being applied to all the major fantasy sports: baseball, basketball and hockey. Applications of his techniques were picked up by SportsIllustrated.com, which ran Georgopoulos’ content.

A Godfather of Pocasting

As early as 1996, Georgopoulos was producing one-hour internet audio broadcasts– one of the forerunners to today’s podcasts. Dubbed “WGRD Radio”, there were 117 episodes recorded through September 11, 2001. His first-person account of the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center marked the final broadcast of WGRD Radio. In 2004, WGRD Radio was reincarnated as Gridiron Grumblings Live!, a two-hour live broadcast covering fantasy football and topical events.

On Sept. 4, 2010, Georgopoulos premiered a new weekly show, Sports Grumblings Live!, on SiriusXM Satellite radio. The show was a three-hour broadcast focusing on all the major fantasy sports (and named to support the re-branded website of SportsGrumblings.com), concurrently entertaining and informing the listeners. The show had a time slot of 8-11 PM ET on Saturday nights, on Sirius 210| XM 87. Sirius/XM decided not to renew the show for a second season.

In 2013, the time, effort and resources required to run an independent fantasy sports site became too much to handle, so Georgopoulos decided to sell the Sports Grumblings brand and properties to his friend and fellow fantasy industry pioneer William Del Pilar; Georgopoulos then accepted an offer to be a featured fantasy football writer at Fantasy Sharks.com.

Other Ventures

Georgopoulos has also taken the time to dabble in the entertainment industry; he has produced, directed and performed in two comedy series (for which he is also credited as a writer) on the Amazon Prime Video platform, Net News (2018) and Back to the Stone Age (2021). Additionally, he is credited as a writer and producer for the unreleased series Celebrapy (2015). Georgopoulos has co-hosted That Riot Show, a podcast found on YouTube, iTunes and other platforms, since 2015.

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