College Basketball Daily Fantasy Helper: Friday 11/16/18
College basketball season is back! And this year, with it comes the return of college basketball DFS.
March Madness is still four months away, but you can get in all the college hoops hype by playing daily contests at FanDuel today. If you've played NBA DFS before, it's quite simple: pick a total of eight players -- four guards, three forwards and one utility spot you can use for either position. Stay within the $50,000 salary cap and field the team you think will score the most fantasy points.
Where scoring differs from NBA is in the blocks and steals categories, with each worth two FanDuel points apiece rather than the three you get in daily NBA contests.
Now that you're in the know, we can attack today's slate, which locks at 7:00 p.m. EST and consists of five games. Up against Louisiana Tech, the high-scoring LSU Tigers are tonight's featured team, as the oddsmakers have them down for a slate-best 83.75 points in this one.
Which players should you be targeting, and why?
Tremont Waters, LSU ($8,300): As mentioned in the open, LSU has the highest total of the night by a whole four points. In fact, they are the only team above 80 and come in as 12.0-point favorites in the contest with the highest over/under (155.5). But they had a high total last game and Waters busted, right? You're right, but that's all the more reason to target him at potentially lower ownership. After averaging 12.2 field goal attempts with a 26.5% usage rate a year ago, the sophomore's usage is at 23.2% and he's getting up 10.7 shots in 32.0 minutes. Those decreases are noticeable yet nothing to be worried about. While he's probably given up some scoring responsibilities to star freshman Naz Reid and others, he has averaged 6.7 assists and 4.7 steals while assisting on 31.3% of LSU's field goals while on the floor. He's heavily involved and engaged on the defensive end, where we can get especially high upside in a game like this.
Mustapha Heron, St. John's ($7,100): Tonight is a night to avoid paying up for two high-priced guards only because Heron gives you that same potential at a $300 to $1,200 discount. The 6'5" junior is off to a hot start this year, hitting 50.0% from the floor and 44.4% from three on his way to 20.5 points per game. He's also seen a fantasy-friendly 32.0 minutes per game, in which he's averaged 13.0 shot attempts, including 4.5 from deep. His 27.6% usage rate trails Shamorie Ponds (27.7%) by a hair, and in the area of peripherals, he's managed 6.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.0 steals, bringing his average to 31.0 FanDuel points through two games. And just last game he scored 26 en route to 35.2 FanDuel points. It only helps that his Red Storm have an implied total of 74.75 points as three-point road favorites over Rutgers.
Geo Baker, Rutgers ($6,600): Speaking of Rutgers, with just a single three-pointer expected to decide this one, we need to run it back with a few Knights, starting with sophomore guard Geo Baker. Following a freshman season in which he tallied 10.8 points (18.6 FanDuel points) per game, he's picked things up early on -- and it goes beyond the scoring. While he's tallied 10 and 20 points, he's also contributed a total of 13 assists, 5 rebounds, 2 blocks and 1 steal in his first two games of the year. He's brought his average to 28.3 FanDuel points per game in 32.0 minutes (he played exactly 32 in both), which is beyond what you're looking for at this price.
LJ Figueroa, St. John's ($5,600): This matchup of former Big East rivals isn't that big of a must-play game, but the pricing for the players in it are downright exploitable. Before heading to the bench last game, Figueroa -- a sophomore guard -- started against Loyola (MD) and produced 25.1 FanDuel points in 26 minutes. He had eight rebounds, three assists and two steals to go with nine points. But even off the bench against Bowling Green, he was able to put up 22.8 FanDuel points in an even greater 34 minutes. At 120th in KenPom.com's adjusted efficiency margin, Rutgers is the best team the Johnnies have faced so far, but they gave up 66 to Drexel. A St. John's team averaging 80.0 points to start the year should at least crack 70, putting players logging big minutes in value territory tonight.
Naz Reid, LSU ($7,800): As I alluded to when talking up Waters, Naz Reid is a beast of a freshman. Over 24.3 minutes, he's averaging 19.0 points, 6.0 rebounds, 1.3 assists and 1.0 blocks (28.5 FanDuel points) a game. For a better perspective, that's 31.2 points, 9.9 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 1.6 blocks per 40 minutes. And if not for being saddled with fouls against Memphis, we could expect the actual production to be much higher. Either way, Reid contributed 30.2 and 37.9 FanDuel points in his first two games and he's first on the team in usage (30.5%). A LA Tech team ranked 102nd in defensive efficiency should be no match for the 6'10" forward.
Eugene Omoruyi, Rutgers ($7,600): The experienced 6'6" forward appears to have taken a leap so far in 2018. Another talented product of Canada, Omoruyi is averaging 11.1 points, 5.0 rebounds and 2.0 assists above his per-game averages from a year ago. Now, that's in 6.3 more minutes, but the per-40 numbers say that the uptick is no fluke. After all, Omoruyi has improved his shooting to 58.3% and he's hit 6-of-7 threes after making none over his first two seasons in Piscataway. He's also using 26.8% of the team's offensive possessions while on the floor, trailing only one teammate and no other Rutgers starter. As we've seen already, he has the ability to close in on 40 FanDuel points if his shot's dropping.
Oscar Da Silva, Stanford ($5,900): In what might first appear to be a potential blowout, the Stanford Cardinal are mere six-point favorites as they host the Wofford Terriers at Maples Pavilion. No matter, though, they are still implied at 76 points, ranking 4th of the 10 squads on the slate. Teammate KZ Okpala ($8,500) could be chalk, but I'd prefer Reid at the discount, and then supplementing him with Da Silva. The 6'9" sophomore has tallied four fouls in two of three games so far, but he's still managed two games with at least 24.9 FanDuel points. He totaled 15.2 over 21 minutes in the other. When he's not in foul trouble, though, we can expect to see Da Silva in the low-30s as far as minutes go, and all we're looking for is about 25 FanDuel points from him. Although a chance for a double-double is there, as the Terriers rank 127th in rebounds against.
Marvin Clark II, St. John's ($5,100): And for one final time we go back to this game. In the second game of the season, head coach Chris Mullin decided to throw out a bit of a different starting lineup. That lineup included Sedee Keita, but Keita will be out for the next four-to-six weeks after undergoing knee surgery. For now, that clears the way for Clark -- who has started both games to date -- to play more minutes and possibly see more opportunities in the frontcourt. Following a dud of a 10.8-FanDuel-point showing in the opener, the senior put up 15 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists and 1 steal en route to 23.0 FanDuel points. He played 29 minutes in both games and should be around 30 once again. So long as the scoring is as expected tonight, he's a key value play at a hair above $5,000.
Brett Oswalt is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Brett Oswalt also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username BRO14THEKID. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.