College Basketball Daily Fantasy Helper: Tuesday 12/14/21

College basketball is back, and we have a three-game slate today.

March Madness is a ways 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.

Scoring differs from NBA in the blocks and steals categories; each is 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. All stats come from KenPom unless otherwise noted.

Which players should you be targeting and why?


Jaden Shackelford, Alabama ($8,000) - Despite his 6'3" frame, Shackelford leads the Alabama Crimson Tide with a defensive rebounding rate of 17.5%. The junior also leads Alabama with a shot rate of 27.8% (the percentage of the team's shot attempts by the player when the player is on the floor). Further enhancing Shackelford's DFS appeal is the matchup with the Memphis Tigers. Both Memphis and Alabama love to push the tempo as Memphis ranks 14th in adjusted tempo while Alabama checks in at 20th.

Ryan Nembhard, Creighton ($6,200) - Nembhard is playing a ton of minutes and possesses the ability to contribute in every major statistical category. Nembhard is posting a 22.8% usage rate (second-best on the Creighton Bluejays). He also owns a 10.0% defensive rebounding rate, 23.7% assist rate (leads team), and a 2.9% steal rate (tied for team lead). The freshman guard is averaging 34.1 minutes per game.

Keon Ellis, Alabama ($5,600) - Ellis leads the Crimson Tide with an offensive rating of 127.7. We are getting a slight discount on Ellis due to his recent shooting woes. The senior has connected on only 1 of 10 field goal attempts over the last two games. That is uncharacteristic for Ellis as he is posting an impressive effective field goal percentage of 59.4% on the season. He is a good bounce-back candidate in Tuesday's fast-paced affair.

RJ Davis, North Carolina ($5,400) - Davis is averaging 0.77 FanDuel points per minute. At that production rate (assuming value is 4x of a player's salary), the North Carolina Tar Heels guard should pay off his salary in 28.1 minutes of action. Davis is averaging 30.9 minutes per game through nine games. When considering salary, Davis is a fantastic option.

DJ Horne, Arizona State ($4,900) - Horne leads the Arizona State Sun Devils in scoring this season (13.2 points per game). Additionally, his 29.2 minutes per game ranks second amongst the Sun Devils. On a slate starved for salary relief, Horne is a solid option.


Armando Bacot, North Carolina ($7,900) - Bacot is my top overall player on this slate and it isn't particularly close. The Tar Heels center is an efficient scorer, an elite rebounder, and a great rim protector. He owns a 12.3% offensive rebounding rate, 26.1% defensive rebounding rate, and a 6.5% block rate (all three lead the team). He also leads the team with a 23.8% usage rate. I like his chances of exploiting the Furman Paladins' soft defense. Furman is ranked 223rd in defensive efficiency.

Jalen Duren, Memphis ($6,700) - Duren was Rival's top overall prospect in the class of 2021. He has been a major force on both ends of the court for the Memphis Tigers. The freshman leads Memphis with a 22.5% defensive rebounding rate and an eye-popping 13.7% block rate. Additionally, he is one of the nation's most efficient scorers as he is posting an effective field goal percentage of 65.5%. The one drawback is that Memphis seems content on limiting Duren to 25 minutes per game. Perhaps his playing time gets extended as the Tigers have lost four straight games.

DeAndre Williams, Memphis ($5,400) - Memphis employs a deep rotation which cuts down the minutes upside on most of their starters. Williams was the Tigers' best player last season. The senior is a solid rebounder (both offensive and defensive rebounding rates are above 13.0%) and a good defender (block rate of 3.5% and a steal rate of 2.8%). Additionally, Williams tops all Tigers with a 24.2% usage rate.

Dawson Garcia, North Carolina ($5,300) - Garcia is slightly risky because he could play 16 minutes or he could play 32 minutes. His rates are almost identical to teammate, Brady Manek ($6,100). However, Garcia comes with a discount of nearly $800 despite posting 30 FanDuel points in North Carolina's last game. As noted above, this is a tremendous spot as the Tar Heels should overwhelm Furman's atrocious defense. Regarding Manek, I think he makes for an intriguing tournament play. I think Garcia will be popular while Manek will likely be significantly less popular. If Garcia's minutes are cut, Manek would be the likely beneficiary.

Emoni Bates, Memphis ($4,900) - Bates drew comparisons to Lebron James while in high school. He reclassified from the class of 2022 to the class of 2021 in order to play college basketball this season. It's been a slow start for the highly touted freshman. On the plus side, Bates leads the Tigers in shot percentage at 25.1%. At some point, I'd expect Bates to break out and flash his potential. He is one of the better sources of salary relief on this slate.

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.