College Basketball Daily Fantasy Helper: Wednesday 1/16/19
College basketball season is back! And this year, with it comes the return of college basketball DFS.
March Madness is still two 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 main slate, which locks at 7:00 p.m. EST and includes 11 games. It also features five ranked teams, most notably the eighth-ranked Texas Tech Red Raiders hosting Big 12 foe Iowa State Cyclones.
|Wednesday, January 16th|
|Kansas State at #20 Oklahoma|
|#23 Iowa at Purdue|
|Boston College at Louisville|
|South Carolina at Vanderbilt|
|#14 Auburn at Texas A&M|
|Alabama at Missouri|
|Georgia Tech at Clemson|
|Minnesota at Illinois|
|Iowa State at #8 Texas Tech|
|#21 Houston at SMU|
|UCF at Wichita State|
Which players should you be targeting, and why?
Jared Harper, Auburn ($8,000): Heading into the evening's packed slate, the 14th-ranked Auburn Tigers are tied for the highest implied total (78.25 points) as they travel to take on the Texas A&M Aggies. That is 6.25 below their season average, and it might be a little low with the Aggies ranked outside the top 100 in KenPom.com's adjusted defensive efficiency. A&M has surrendered 80-plus points five times this season, with two of those games -- Gonzaga and Kentucky -- against teams inside the top 15 in adjusted efficiency margin; Auburn is 14th. They're led by Harper, a junior guard averaging 15.0 points, 6.7 assists and 3.1 rebounds on a 21.7% usage rate, resulting in 28.9 FanDuel points per game. Harper owns five games over tonight's salary-implied total (32.0 at 4.0 points per $1,000), four of which came when the Tigers scored 80 or more points.
Ayo Dosunmu, Illinois ($7,800): There are a number of NBA draft prospects at our disposal tonight, but one talent that you may not have noticed is Illinois freshman Ayo Dosunmu. The 6'5" guard received offers from Kansas and North Carolina State, to name a few, and his chances of heading to the NBA are increasing game after game. So far, he's averaged 13.6 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.8 assists, but in the last four -- three in Big Ten play -- he's turned in per-game marks of 20.5 points, 5.8 rebounds, 2.5 assists and a total of 33.9 FanDuel points. He needs just 31.2 for four-times value. The probability that he reaches that number is especially high because this game's 146.5 over/under is third on the slate and the Illini are playing on their home floor.
Christen Cunningham, Louisville ($6,600): Tied with Auburn for the highest total, the Louisville Cardinals are 10.5-point home favorites versus the Boston College Eagles. They are 23rd in adjusted efficiency margin and sport the nation's 15th-best offense by efficiency, and they get to do work against Ken Pom's 116th-ranked team and 112th-ranked defense. It wouldn't be surprising to see Louisville surpass 80 in a blowout, and if they do Cunningham should play a part. The graduate transfer is second on the team in scoring, averaging 10.6 points on over 50% shooting and 1.2 threes per game. He's been particularly hot in recent weeks, too, averaging 16.2 points on 69.8%, along with 4.6 assists a night, bringing his average to 25.9 FanDuel points in his last five. Get him while he's hot.
Shelton Mitchell, Clemson ($5,600): Targeting Clemson and their 69.75 total probably isn't at the top of anyone's wish list tonight. After all, they meet Georgia Tech, who ranks 10th in adjusted defensive efficiency. But Clemson's total is still middle of the pack as they sit as seven-point home favorites. Someone is going to score points, and why not Mitchell? He's third and second on the team with 12.6 points and 10.8 field goal attempts per game. His 23.6% usage rate is third among starters, so the opportunity is consistently there. He hasn't had fantasy success of late -- he hasn't topped 20 in five games -- but in the three games prior he tallied 23.1, 23.8 and 30.6 FanDuel points. If his shot is on, he's going to score and rack up fantasy points in the process. He's as good as it gets in this price range.
Javon Pickett, Missouri ($4,900): Like Clemson, the masses may sleep on Missouri in this spot. While they're 1.5-point home dogs, their total (71.25) is nowhere near fade-worthy. In fact, it comes in 2.15 points above their season average on a per-game basis. They have scored 70 or more six times this season, and in those games their freshman guard has tallied 16 or more points twice, tallying 20.3 and 30.4 FanDuel points in those two performances. Pickett averages 14.5, which is really reliant on his scoring (8.1 points a game). But he's a starter getting 25 or so minutes, and most importantly he gives you the salary relief to roster our top targets.
Jordan Nwora, Louisville ($7,800): Nwora is the go-to guy for the Cardinals. Not only does he average a team-high 17.3 points on 12.3 attempts a game, but he sports a monster 27.7% usage alongside 8.0 rebounds on a 24.0% defensive rebounding rate and a 15.2% total rebounding rate. He has managed four double-doubles on the year en route to 29.4 FanDuel points per game. Tonight, he gets a BC team outside the top 100 in rebounds across the board. Nwora has the upside of a guy above $8,000, but no one can fault you paying the extra $700 for Minnesota's Jordan Murphy ($8,500). If you punt a spot, he's a great tournament play.
Daniel Oturu, Minnesota ($6,800): While Murphy takes up a large chunk of your salary, thereby hindering cash lineups, his frontcourt mate comes at a nice discount. Below $7,000, Oturu is averaging 10.2 points and 23.1 FanDuel points across 23.6 minutes per game. However, he's logged 26 or more minutes in six of the last seven, averaging 12.4 points, 9.0 rebounds and 26.7 FanDuel points in that span. He's posted five double-doubles in that same amount of time, each of those resulting for at least 29.7 FanDuel points -- nearly 4.4 points per $1,000 at this price. Boosting his appeal even further is Illinois' poor rebounding, as they sit 308th(!) in total rebounding rate against.
Aaron Nesmith, Vanderbilt ($5,800): On its face, the freshman isn't an exciting play as Vanderbilt hosts South Carolina this evening. The 6'6" forward has started just two games while averaging 23.8 minutes per game. He's turned that into 8.1 points and 19.1 FanDuel points, but all the intrigue stems from the matchup and game script. Nesmith should benefit from a higher-tempo game as the Gamecocks -- 23rd in adjusted tempo -- average four more possessions per game than his Commodores, who are outside the top 100 in that category. That's led to a juicy 77.25 for Vandy, so a 15-point scoring night isn't out of the question. If he can do that, the peripherals should allow him to reach value, too -- Nesmith has rounded up at least five rebounds in all but one game he's played 20 or more minutes.
Jamuni McNeace, Oklahoma ($4,700): Reports suggest that McNeace is finally close to 100%, after dealing with an ankle injury that derailed his strong start to the season. That start consisted of three double-digit scoring games and five games with at least six rebounds, all while blocking a total of 15 shots in his first 7 games. Since then, he's either been out or hindered by the injury, playing few minutes and at a less-than-productive level. But the senior turned a corner on Saturday, accounting for six points, six rebounds, two blocks and an assist in 22 minutes. His 18.7 FanDuel points are a hair shy of his salary-implied total tonight, and there's no telling if he'll get more than 22 minutes against Kansas State. If he does, he could be the slate's best overall value.
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.