College Basketball Daily Fantasy Helper: Tuesday 2/12/19
College basketball season is in full tilt.
March Madness is still roughly a month 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 consists of nine games, including three top-25 matchups. Duke-Louisville is the most fantasy-friendly among them, sporting a slate-high 151.5 over/under.
|Tuesday, February 12th|
|#11 Michigan State at #20 Wisconsin|
|#19 LSU at #5 Kentucky|
|#10 Marquette at DePaul|
|Butler at St. John's|
|#6 Michigan at Penn State|
|Arkansas at Missouri|
|#2 Duke at #16 Louisville|
|#18 Kansas State at Texas|
|Alabama at Mississippi State|
Which players should you be targeting and why?
R.J. Barrett, Duke ($8,900): At the very top, the Blue Devils carry the night's highest implied total at 79.75 points. They're one of only four teams above 75 and their game's 151.5 over/under is as juicy as it gets. Now, we know there are two big names to consider here, but Barrett is the cheaper option -- as he has been most of the season -- and is coming off a big game. Against Virginia, he knocked down an efficient 8-of-15 from the floor and 6-of-10 from three, ending the night with 26 points and 35.9 FanDuel points in 40 minutes. He played at least 40 minutes for the fourth time in conference play alone, and all that's done for him is bring his average to 35.8 FanDuel points in those games. Louisville is 250th in KenPom.com's adjusted tempo, but there should be no slowing Barrett or the Blue Devils, who have scored at least 80 in 7 of 10 ACC games, as well as four straight against all opponents.
Quinndary Weatherspoon, Mississippi State ($8,200): For fantasy purposes, the Mississippi State Bulldogs have been an interesting team to monitor of late. They have made changes to their starting lineup and rotation, and that's opened up some obvious values. But Weatherspoon is a different case; he really hasn't been affected by the changes. Averaging 29.3 FanDuel points a game for the year, the senior guard has turned in 30 or more FanDuel points 12 times, including 6 of 10 since the start of the new year. He is coming off of a bit of a down game against Kentucky, but he scored 27 in three of his previous four, all of which saw him hit at least 31.4 in fantasy scoring. He scored 14 and went for 23.5 on the road at Alabama, tonight's opponent, and that spells trouble for the Tide. Weatherspoon is shooting 6.5% higher at home and is averaging 1.5 more points at home than in all other games this year.
Christen Cunningham, Louisville ($6,400): On the home side of the ACC clash in Louisville, the Cardinals are playing up in pace against a Blue Devil team that ranks 18th in the nation in adjusted tempo. That puts a bunch of Chris Mack's guys on the radar, but in the mid range Cunningham is a fantastic target. En route to 11.8 points and 24.3 FanDuel points per game in conference play, the 6'2" guard has a 16.4% usage rate and 32.1% assist rate through 11 contests. He's tallied six-plus assists in three straight, which has helped him to two games over 30 FanDuel points. By narrative alone, he'll have to have a great game for Louisville to hang with the talent of Duke.
Devin Gage, DePaul ($5,900): This Big East game between DePaul and Marquette is full of fantasy potential with a 150.5-point over/under and a mere three-point spread in favor of the visiting Golden Eagles. But while Marquette is implied for more points, the Blue Demons have some nice fantasy plays of their own, and Gage might be the best point-per-dollar play among them. The junior guard is averaging under 20 FanDuel points (19.5) a game, but he's shown on multiple occasions (eight, to be exact) that he's capable of reaching tonight's salary-implied output (23.6 at 4.0 points per $1,000). Just last game he filled up the stat sheet with eight points, five rebounds, four assists and two steals for a total of 24 FanDuel points. Against a Marquette team allowing 72.2 points per game in conference play, Gage should have no problem getting enough points to go with all the peripheral stats that make him a worthwhile option.
Torrence Watson, Missouri ($4,100): Cheap plays aren't plenty tonight, particularly at guard, but if you'd like to punt entirely Watson is your guy. Teammate Mark Smith will remain out, leaving 29.6 minutes, 9.1 shots and a 19.9% usage to be absorbed by others. In his stead, Watson started the last game, turning 31 minutes into 12 points and 17.8 FanDuel points. That's not all that exciting, but it marks the third time in four games that he's scored in double digits, and all he needs is 16.4 FanDuel points for optimal value. If he doesn't get there, you should be able to make up ground with the studs he helped you afford.
PJ Washington, Kentucky ($8,100): You know Zion Williamson ($9,600) is in play regardless of matchup, but to save quite a few bucks we'll shift our focus to Kentucky's PJ Washington. The sophomore forward has really come on of late, averaging 36.0 FanDuel points over his last six games. During that same time, he has managed two games over 40 with three double-doubles, all while playing 29.8 minutes a game. He has averaged over a FanDuel points per minute in the four games he's played fewer than 30 minutes, and in the last two his rebounding numbers haven't been that high. We'll look for that to change tonight against LSU, who already rank 52nd in adjusted defensive efficiency, 49th in adjusted tempo and 73.4 opponent points per game.
Paul Reed, DePaul ($7,700): Returning to that DePaul team, Reed is one of their go-to guys. The 6'9" forward has a 21.7% usage rate, with which he's scored 11.8 points per game on 8.4 shots and 3.0 free throw attempts (in only 25.8 minutes). With his minutes up to 29.5 in 11 conference games, he's averaged 15.7 points, 9.5 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 2.2 blocks-plus-steals. When accounting for turnovers, he's at 31.1 FanDuel points per contest behind an elevated usage rate (24.1%). He had 29.4 FanDuel points on the road at Marquette a few weeks back, so let's operate with that as his baseline with the upside for 40 or more on his home floor tonight.
Reggie Perry, Mississippi State ($6,200): Unlike Weatherspoon, with Perry you are getting prime value. The stud freshman was inserted into the starting lineup for each of the past three games, during which he's averaged 14.7 points, 9.0 rebounds and 28.5 FanDuel points a contest. In all seven of his starts, he's averaged 21.7 FanDuel points over 26.4 minutes per game, though it's worth noting that he played 34 and 36 minutes in the two games prior to Saturday's 23-minute outing. Alabama isn't terrible defensively, but they're outside the top 50 in defensive efficiency and the Bulldogs are expected to score the third-most points, according to the betting lines. It's safe to lock Perry in at the forward spot.
Jeremiah Tilmon, Missouri ($5,300): You might find it odd that we are looking to two Missouri players for value, seeing as their implied total (68.75) is closer to the bottom than the top of the slate. However, they are somewhat used to low-scoring games as shown by their 67.6 points per game (they only give up 68.2 a game). Their tempo is 315th, but that will be boosted by Arkansas, a team averaging a whole six more possessions on a per-game basis. That alone creates opportunity, but the Razorbacks are also 306th in rebound rate (47.6%), which bodes well for Tilmon. The sophomore is averaging 5.9 rebounds per game and has six or more pulls in four of his last seven. He has often hung around 20 FanDuel points, and he even has four double-doubles to his name this season. Don't sleep on him in either format.
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.