College Basketball Daily Fantasy Helper: Tuesday 1/12/21

College basketball season is entering conference play, and we have a nine-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 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?


David Duke, Providence ($8,400) - Duke is an intriguing target because he plays nearly the entire game, and he owns an impressive 27.2% usage rate, per KenPom. The junior is taking 27.6% of the Providence Friars shots when he's on the floor. Despite taking a ton of shots, he leads the Friars with a 24.7% assist rate, per KenPom. Duke has recorded at least 43 FanDuel points in three out of the last four games. The matchup with the Marquette Golden Eagles isn't prohibitive, as they are 74th in KenPom's defensive rankings.

DJ Steward, Duke ($6,500) - The consensus five-star prospect has been sensational for the Duke Blue Devils as of late. Over the last three games, the freshman is averaging 17.0 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.7 assists, and 3.0 blocks/steals in 33.3 minutes. The matchup with the Virginia Tech Hokies isn't imposing, as the Hokies are 49th in KenPom's defensive rankings. Take advantage of Steward's mid-tier salary now because it will almost certainly be on the rise.

Herbert Jones, Alabama ($6,400) - Jones has a solid floor and considerable upside due to his ability to contribute on both ends of the court. He's averaging 12.9 points (third amongst the Alabama Crimson Tide), 6.5 rebounds (leads team), 1.9 assists, 1.7 steals (leads team), and 1.1 blocks (second on the team) in 27.5 minutes. The senior is averaging 31.4 FanDuel points over the last three games, yet his salary remains in the low-to-mid 6,000s. He's one of the best mid-tier plays on Tuesday night.

Davion Mintz, Kentucky ($5,300) - Mintz is firmly entrenched as the Kentucky Wildcats starting point guard. The senior has played 31-plus minutes in six straight games. He leads the Wildcats with a 20.4% assist rate and owns a 19.9% usage rate (fourth amongst the Wildcats), per KenPom. The game with Alabama on Tuesday night further enhances Mintz's appeal because it's a massive pace-up game for the Wildcats. The Crimson Tide are 15th in KenPom's tempo rankings, while Kentucky is 240th.

Jaden Springer, Tennessee ($4,900) - The freshman was one of the nation's top shooting guard prospects in the class of 2020. Springer owns a 24.3% usage rate, per KenPom. He also has a 20.9% assist rate and 2.7% steal rate to compliment his usage rate. Springer made his first career start in the Tennessee Volunteers' last game and logged a season-high 30 minutes. Up next is a date with the defensive optional Vanderbilt Commodores. Vanderbilt checks in at 164th in KenPom's defensive rankings. Springer and teammate Keon Johnson are solid sources of salary relief.

Other players to consider for salary relief ($5,000 or less): Jeremy Roach, Keon Johnson, AJ Reeves (better if Jared Bynum is OUT), and Devin Askew (if Terrance Clarke is OUT).


Keve Aluma, Virginia Tech ($7,500) - The former Wofford Terriers star has emerged as the Virginia Tech Hokies' best player this season. The junior leads the team in scoring (15.5 per game), rebounding (7.0 per game), and blocked shots (1.2 per game). He squares off with a Duke team that will potentially be shorthanded in the frontcourt. Jalen Johnson, the Blue Devils' top post player, is a game-time decision after missing each of the last three games.

Keion Brooks, Kentucky ($6,800) - Brooks made his season debut over the weekend for the Kentucky Wildcats. The sophomore scored 12 points, collected 6 rebounds, dished out 4 assists, blocked a shot, and recorded a steal for 27.2 FanDuel points in 25 minutes of action. Brooks played the majority of the second half, which is encouraging from a conditioning standpoint. His minutes should grow as the season progresses.

Day'Ron Sharpe, North Carolina ($6,700) - Sharpe was a highly touted prospect in the North Carolina Tar Heels' 2020 class. The freshman has not disappointed, as he's averaging an impressive 1.22 FanDuel points per minute. At that production level, he should pay off his salary in 21.9 minutes (assuming value is 4x of a player's salary). Sharpe has logged at least 27 minutes in each of the last two games. When factoring in salary, he's my favorite overall play on this slate.

Dawson Garcia, Marquette ($5,900) - Garcia has enjoyed a spike in playing time over the last two games. He was also unstoppable in those two games, as he averaged 14.5 points, 12.0 rebounds, and 0.5 steals in 35.0 minutes (up from his seasonal average of 30.0 minutes per game). The matchup with Providence is a good spot for the young forward. Providence ranks 81st in KenPom's defensive rankings. Additionally, the Friars struggle shooting the ball, ranking 145th in KenPom's effective field goal percentage (50.6%). That should provide Garcia with plenty of rebounding opportunities, which plays to his strength. He leads Marquette with an 18.5% defensive rebounding rate, per KenPom.

David McCormack, Kansas ($4,600) - The traditional post player can rack up fantasy points in a hurry because most of his work is around the rim. The Kansas Jayhawks forward leads the Jayhawks with a 28.9% usage rate. He also has an offensive rebounding rate and defensive rebounding rate north of 10%, per KenPom. The only thing that holds him back from stuffing the stat sheet has been playing time. However, that has changed as of late. The junior has logged at least 23 minutes in three out of the last four games.

Other players to consider for salary relief ($5,000 or less): Justyn Mutts, Anthony Duruji, Nate Reuvers, Wendell Moore Jr. (better if Jalen Johnson is OUT), Jimmy Nichols Jr., and Khadim Sy.

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.