College Basketball Daily Fantasy Helper: Wednesday 12/16/20
College basketball season is finally here, and we have a five-game slate today.
March Madness is a ways off at this point, 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.
Which players should you be targeting, and why?
Cade Cunningham, Oklahoma State ($8,000) - Widely regarding as the likely number one pick in the 2021 NBA draft, Cunningham has made an immediate splash for the Oklahoma State Cowboys. The freshman has been a difference-maker on both ends of the court. He's averaging 18.5 points, 5.7 rebounds, 4.0 assists, and 2.3 blocks/steals in 32.8 minutes. He's in a good spot on Wednesday night as the Cowboys host the Texas Christian Horned Frogs. The Horned Frogs 47th ranked defense, per KenPom, and will be hard-pressed to slow down Cunningham. Prentiss Hubb ($7,700) of Notre Dame has flourished this season and he's worth a look on the high end of the salary spectrum.
Collin Gillespie, Villanova ($6,600) - Gillespie leads an experienced and talented Villanova Wildcats squad, making him a strong play tonight. The Wildcats' point guard is averaging .78 FanDuel points per minute and at that production rate, he should pay off his salary in 33.8 minutes. The senior has played 33-plus minutes in five out of six games this season -- the lone exception was a blowout win over the Hartford Hawks.
Mike Miles, Texas Christian ($5,700) - The freshman owns a 25.4% usage rate and a 24.6% assist rate so far this season, per KenPom. Throw in a massive pace-up game for the Horned Frogs and Miles looks like an appealing mid-tier target. Texas Christian is 345th in KenPom's tempo rankings while Oklahoma State is 62nd. Those additional possessions should provide extra playmaking opportunities for Miles.
DJ Steward, Duke ($5,300) - With Jalen Johnson sidelined, there will be more shots and rebounds available for all of the Duke Blue Devils. Steward is averaging 11.8 points, 4.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists, and 1.5 blocks this season. He'll need to be more aggressive in scoring the ball and he figures to see an increase in rebounding sans Johnson. Steward is underpriced for his expected bump in production with Johnson out of the lineup.
Jeremy Roach, Duke ($4,700) - Roach is one of several high profile freshmen for the Duke Blue Devils. The consensus five-star prospect shined in Duke's loss to Illinois in their last outing. Despite coming off the bench, Roach scored 13 points, collected 4 rebounds, and dished 7 assists in 31 minutes. There are rumblings that he could make his first start as soon as tonight.
Matthew Hurt, Duke ($7,900) - The Blue Devils are appealing targets due to a solid matchup and one of their high producing players in Jalen Johnson is sidelined (as mentioned above). Duke travels to Notre Dame for their first ACC game of the season. Notre Dame struggles on the defensive end of the court as they are 120th in KenPom's defensive ratings. Hurt leads the Blue Devils in scoring and is tied with Johnson as the team leader in rebounds. The emerging sophomore is averaging 19.0 points and 8.3 rebounds in 31.8 minutes. He'll have to play as many minutes as he can handle with Johnson out.
Trevion Williams, Purdue ($6,800) - Williams possesses one of the highest ceilings in all of college basketball. The Purdue Boilermakers' forward owns an impressive 35.6% usage rate, per KenPom as well as his rebounding rates rank within the top 15 in the nation. The junior also has the ability to rack up the defensive statistics as well. Basically what I'm saying is that he's a great play at his current salary.
Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, Villanova ($6,400) - Robinson-Earl has a stable floor since he's an efficient scorer, an elite rebounder, and rarely leaves the court. He leads Villanova in rebounding (8.2 rebounds per game) and he's the second-leading scorer (15.0 points per game). I like his chances of taking advantage of a Butler Bulldogs' team, who struggled with Western Michigan in their lone game this season. Additionally, Robinson-Earl has cleared 31 FanDuel points in three out of six games.
Justice Sueing, Ohio State ($5,800) - Sueing may be forced into big minutes if EJ Liddell remains sidelined on Wednesday night. The Ohio State Buckeyes kick off B1G Ten play which should mean a condensed rotation. The sophomore is averaging 14.0 points, 4.4 rebounds, 1.6 assists, and 1.6 blocks/steals in 27.4 minutes. If his minutes creep up to the 30-minute mark, his production should smash his current salary. He's averaging 30.3 minutes in Ohio State's three competitive games this season (one of those games was mired by foul trouble).
Jaemyn Brakefield, Duke ($4,500) - With Jalen Johnson out indefinitely, there will be more minutes available in Duke's frontcourt. While it's not yet known who will directly replace Johnson, Brakefield is a logical choice. The freshman has flashed early this season for the Blue Devils. He's averaging .99 FanDuel points per minute and at that production rate, he should pay off his salary in 18.2 minutes of action. Brakefield logged 18 minutes in Duke's last game and that was with Johnson in the lineup. Bryce Golden ($4,100) of Butler is also worth a look if you need salary relief.
Matthew Hiatt is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Matthew Hiatt also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username easternmh. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his/her 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.