College Basketball Daily Fantasy Helper: Wednesday 12/9/20
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 7:15 p.m. EST.
Which players should you be targeting, and why?
Jose Alvarado, Georgia Tech ($7,200) - The Swiss Army knife point guard is averaging an impressive 32.9 FanDuel points per game despite seeing a dip in his usage rate from a season ago, per KenPom. The good news is that the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets roster is mostly the same as last season. It's not unreasonable to believe that Alvarado's usage rate will soon go up from the current rate of 19.5% to closer to last season's 24.1% usage rate. Any increase in the usage rate against Wednesday night's opponent, the defensive-deficient Nebraska Cornhuskers, could lead to a monster box score. Nebraska is 92nd in KenPom's defensive rankings.
Paul Scruggs, Xavier ($6,500) - The Xavier point guard has been a menace on both ends of the court. Scruggs is averaging 13.7 points, 7.0 assists, and 2.6 blocks/steals in 31.7 minutes of action. He should have plenty of opportunities to make plays against the Oklahoma Sooners. The matchup with Oklahoma is a huge pace-up game for the Musketeers. Oklahoma is 51st in KenPom's tempo rankings, while Xavier is 240th.
Chase Audige, Northwestern ($6,300) - Audige sat out last season after transferring from William and Mary. He was one of the top freshmen in the Colonial Athletic Association during his team at William and Mary. The sophomore currently starts at one of the guard spots for the Northwestern Wildcats. Through two games, he's posting an eye-popping 42.9% usage rate, per KenPom. While that will almost certainly regress, he is a decent rebounder. He'll also see more time on the court, as Northwestern has blown out their first two opponents, which has limited Audige to only 20.5 minutes per game.
Sam Hauser, Virginia ($5,700) - The Naismith Trophy candidate owns a healthy 25.6% usage rate along with solid rebounding and block rates, per KenPom. The senior is playing a team-high 29.8 minutes this season. In Virginia's two competitive games, Hauser has played at least 34 minutes in each game. The matchup with the Michigan State Spartans is a major pace-up game for the snail-paced Cavaliers. The Spartans are 84th in KenPom's tempo ratings, while Virginia is 357th. Hauser is one of the more attractive mid-tier options on Wednesday night.
Scottie Barnes, Florida State ($4,700) - Barnes was one of the nation's top recruits in the 2020 class. The five-star wing attempted a team-high 11 field goal attempts in the Florida State Seminoles season opener. Barnes recorded eight points, six rebounds, and six assists in 24 minutes. His minutes should increase with Florida State hosting the Indiana Hoosiers in the ACC/Big 10 challenge. Take advantage of his attractive salary while you still can.
Moses Wright, Georgia Tech ($8,200) - Wright has been phenomenal so far this season for the Yellow Jackets. The senior is averaging 24.0 points, 10.7 rebounds, 2.0 assists, and 3.0 blocks/steals. His hot start should continue in a major pace-up game with Nebraska. The Cornhuskers rank 21st in KenPom's tempo rankings, while Georgia Tech is 173rd. As noted above, Nebraska also struggles defensively.
Brady Manek, Oklahoma ($7,100) - With Kristian Doolittle no longer around, Manek and Austin Reaves have to provide the heavy lifting for the Oklahoma Sooners. At times, Manek can dominate on both ends of the court. The senior is off to a fast start in his final season as a Sooner. Manek is averaging 21.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, and 2.5 blocks/steals in 28.5 minutes.
Zach Freemantle, Xavier ($6,800) - Freemantle is the Musketeers leading scorer (17.2 points per game) and second-leading rebounder (8.5 rebounds per game). He's also an effective rebounder and shot blocker. As a result, Freemantle offers a safe floor with tremendous upside. The senior has topped 22.4 FanDuel points in five out of six games while eclipsing 41 FanDuel points in two of those games.
Pete Nance, Northwestern ($5,600) - Nance is averaging 1.05 FanDuel points per minute. At his current production level, the Northwestern forward should pay off his salary in 21.3 minutes of action (assuming value is 4x of a player's salary). Nance was on the court last season for an average of 26.2 minutes.
Balsa Koprivica ($4,400) - The Florida State Seminoles seemingly have a seven-footer every season that plays about half the game and dents the box score. This season that would be starting center Balsa Koprivica. The sophomore center posted a hefty 25.4% usage rate while recording 2 blocks and a steal in 17 minutes in the Seminoles season-opener.
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.