College Basketball Daily Fantasy Helper: Tuesday 2/18/20
College basketball season is in the middle of conference play, and we have a 10-game slate tonight.
March Madness is 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.
Which players should you be targeting, and why?
Relevant Injury Situations: Devin Vassell (Florida State), Marcus Evans (Virginia Commonwealth), and MaCio Teague (Baylor) are all questionable. Isaiah Joe (Arkansas) along with Missouri's Jeremiah Tilmon and Mark Smith are out.
Markus Howard, Marquette ($8,500) - The nation's leading scorer (27.3 points per game) is always going to garner plenty of interest any time he takes the court. Howard has an enormous usage rate of 37.9% (second highest in the nation), and he takes 41.7% of the team's shots when he's on the floor (leads the nation), per KenPom. On tap is a juicy matchup against the Creighton Bluejays. The Bluejays are 82nd in KenPom's adjusted defense ratings. Mason Jones ($8,100) is a slightly cheaper alternative to Howard if you can't pay all the way up to Howard.
Breein Tyree, Mississippi ($7,300) - The Mississippi guard is a volume-scorer equipped with monster upside. Over the last four games, Tyree is averaging 30.0 points, 4.25 rebounds, 1.5 assists, and 2.0 steals/blocks in 37.75 minutes. Three of those games came against teams ranked within the top 70 of KenPom's adjusted defense ratings (Florida Gators, South Carolina Gamecocks, and Kentucky Wildcats). Now he gets a matchup with the Missouri Tigers which ranks 99th in KenPom's adjusted defense ratings. I also like Skylar Mays ($7,500), Anthony Cowan Jr. ($7,200), and Ashton Hagans ($7,000) in Tyree's price range.
Marcus Zegarowski, Creighton ($6,500) - I love targeting Zegarowski because he rarely leaves the court and takes a ton of shots. Zegarowski has played 36-plus minutes in five out of the last six games. The sophomore has a usage rate of 24.3% (team high), and he takes 23.8% of the team's shots when he's on the floor, per KenPom. Up next is a huge pace-up game for the Bluejays. Creighton is 157th in KenPom's adjusted tempo ratings, while the Marquette Golden Eagles are 52nd. Backcourt mates, Ty-Shon Alexander ($6,900) and Mitch Ballock ($6,400), are also good plays.
Jared Butler, Baylor ($5,600) - Butler owns a 26.0% usage rate; he takes 28.9% of the team's shots when he's on the floor, per KenPom. Both of those numbers lead the Bears. Despite topping 20 FanDuel points in four straight games, Butler's price tag remains under $6,000. This looks like the perfect time to take advantage of his cheap price tag, as the Bears are going to experience a significant pace-up game as they travel to Oklahoma. Baylor is 288th in KenPom's adjusted tempo ratings, while Oklahoma is 103rd. Additionally, Butler's outlook may be further enhanced if backcourt mate MaCio Teague misses his second consecutive game (Teague is a nursing a wrist injury). Immanuel Quickley ($5,800), Tyrese Maxey ($5,700), and Devontae Shuler ($5,500) are also solid plays in Butler's price range. Priced slightly below these guys is Xavier Pinson ($5,200). He's locked into big minutes with Mark Smith sidelined. Pinson is averaging 33.6 FanDuel points over the last three games.
Darryl Morsell, Maryland ($4,800) - Morsell appears to be locked into heavy minutes, as he's logged 29-plus minutes in five straight games. Over the last five games, Morsell is averaging 10.4 points, 3.6 rebounds, 3.2 assists, 1.6 steals/blocks, and 3.0 turnovers. He's one of the few players under $5,000 that has 35 FanDuel points upside (two games with 35-plus FanDuel points this season).
Other forwards to consider (below $5,000): Javon Pickett, Pat Spencer, Aaron Wiggins, Scottie Lewis, Nah'Shon Hyland, Devonte Bandoo (if Teague is out), and Brevin Pritzl.
Jalen Smith, Maryland ($8,000) - Smith has been a monster on both ends of the court as Big Ten conference play winds down. Over the last eight games, Smith is averaging 18.5 points, 11.9 rebounds, 0.8 rebounds, and 2.3 blocks/steals in 35.9 minutes. Look for his domination to continue against the struggling Northwestern Wildcats. Northwestern has fallen 164th in KenPom's adjusted defense ratings. Obi Toppin ($8,300) is also a viable alternative in Smith's price range.
Nick Richards, Kentucky ($6,800) - Richards provides a solid floor along with significant upside. The Kentucky forward has eclipsed 23 FanDuel points in 10 out of the last 11 games. He's topped 40 FanDuel points in four games this season. On tap is a phenomenal matchup against fast-paced (89th in KenPom's adjusted tempo ratings) and defensive-deficient Louisiana State. LSU is 175th in KenPom's adjusted defense ratings. Oscar Tshiebwe ($6,700) and Marcus Santos-Silva ($6,600) are also worth a look.
Kerry Blackshear Jr., Florida ($6,600) - Blackshear Jr. leads the Gators in points (13.6 per game) and rebounds (7.7 per game). He also leads the Gators with a 24.8% usage rate, per KenPom. While the matchup with Arkansas (23rd in KenPom's adjusted defense ratings) will be difficult, it's also a massive pace-up game for Florida. Florida is 296th in KenPom's adjusted tempo ratings, while Arkansas is 58th. Frontcourt mate, Keyontae Johnson ($6,100), is also worth a look at a slightly cheaper price tag. I also like Freddie Gillespie ($6,400) at a similar price as Blackshear Jr.
Trendon Watford, LSU ($5,600) - Watford is averaging 0.8 FanDuel points per minute. At that production clip, he is expected to pay off his price tag in 28 minutes of action. The freshman has logged 29-plus minutes in 10 straight games. I also like Derek Culver ($5,600), who is priced the same as Watford but will likely carry less ownership.
Patrick Williams, Florida State ($4,900) - The former five-star recruit has been on a tear as of late. Over the last four games, the freshman is averaging 13.0 points, 5.75 rebounds, 1.0 assists, and 1.4 blocks/steals in 24.3 minutes (equates to 24.65 FanDuel points). With Devin Vassell's (leads Florida State with 13.4 points per game) status in question, Williams could be asked to log heavy minutes (played 32 minutes on Saturday against Syracuse with Vassell out).
Other forwards to consider (below $5,000): Micah Potter, Ryan Mikesell, EJ Montgomery, Reggie Chaney, Malik Osborne, and Donta Scott.
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.