March Madness: Top DraftKings Plays for Thursday's Sweet 16 Games
March Madness hasn't disappointed this year.
Exhibit A, ladies and gentlemen.
Yes, there have been several great games and a number of upsets, and it's been a lot of fun. But now that it's time for the Sweet 16, the weaker teams have been sent home, and we'll only have just four games on tap for both Thursday and Friday.
Now that we'll have extremely competitive games and well-known teams, it's the best time to go hard in college basketball DFS over at DraftKings.
Though these contests will be competitive, there are weaknesses to target and matchups to take advantage of. Here are six value plays to get you started.
Fred VanVleet, Wichita State - G ($8,700)
The Wichita State point guard has been on fire as of late. In his past three games, VanVleet has put up 35.75, 35.5 and 34.5 fantasy points while averaging 21.7 points and 5.0 assists per game.
If that's not enough, VanVleet has a pretty good matchup against Jerian Grant and the up-tempo Fighting Irish. Coming into the tournament, the Irish ranked 41 out of the 64 tournament teams against the point guard position, giving up at least 29.5 fantasy points in three out of their last 10 regular season matchups.
T.J. McConnell, Arizona - G ($7,800)
McConnell is another point guard with a favorable matchup coming into Thursday's games. Xavier has struggled against opposing point guards -- they came into the tournament 54th against their opponents' floor generals. In their last 10 regular season games, the Musketeers gave up nearly 24 fantasy points per game to opposing players who play the position.
In their last game against Georgia State, Xavier gave up 34 fantasy points to R.J. Hunter. McConnell and Hunter might not have much in common when it comes to style of play, but we should expect McConnell to continue to tally assists and score in double figures. He's averaging 30.3 fantasy points per game over his last four games, and this matchup should bring just as good of results.
Zach Auguste, Notre Dame - F ($6,600)
For me, Zach Auguste is the best value play out there for tournament games tomorrow. He may be coming off a game in which he failed to make value, but that was against a stingy Butler defense. Despite scoring 7 actual points, Auguste tallied 13 rebounds. That's the second time in three games that Auguste has reached 13 boards.
Tomorrow, Auguste could reach that total again, and we should feel confident that he'll score double-digit points with the possibility for a double-double. The Shockers aren't terrible when it comes to guarding opposing centers, but they did give up 10 rebounds to Kansas' Landen Lucas in their last game. They haven't faced a center like Auguste, who combines both rebounding and offense to put his stamp on a game down low.
Willie Cauley-Stein, Kentucky - F ($5,900)
Cauley-Stein's ownership might be down after a 13 (fantasy) point outing against Cincinnati on Saturday. You should take advantage of that. Cincinnati ranked 14th against opposing players at the five-spot while West Virginia ranks just 52nd among all NCAA tourney teams. The Mountaineers' tallest player, Devin Williams, is just 6'9" and should be no match for Cauley-Stein.
The Wildcats' starting center has shown us recently that he's more than capable of surpassing his salary value. In the SEC tournament, against Arkansas and Auburn, Cauley-Stein scored at least 29 fantasy points while averaging 16.5 points and 8.5 boards.
Bronson Koenig, Wisconsin - G ($5,500)
The Wisconsin point guard doesn't provide huge upside, but he's a great guy to fit into your lineup at a lower price point. In his last two, Koenig has struggled to reach about 15 fantasy points, due to shooting 5-14 from the floor combined. But, the two games prior, Koenig amassed 63 fantasy points on 50% shooting.
If that wasn't enough to make you want to target Koenig, this should be: he'll go up against Marcus Paige and the North Carolina Tar Heels, who love to get up and down the floor. As a result, the Tar Heels allowed over 25 fantasy points per game to the position entering the tournament -- 59th of 64 NCAA tournament teams. Expect Koenig to at least reach value in this plus matchup.
Andrew Harrison/Tyler Ulis, Kentucky - G ($5,900/$4,600)
Here's a two-for-one special, but it's important to fit them both in. Andrew Harrison and Tyler Ulis have been splitting a lot of time at the point guard position for the Wildcats. But both have played at least 53 minutes in their first two tournament games, so it's just a matter of picking the right guy in this particular game.
The matchup, for either point guard, is there. Juwan Staten and the West Virginia Mountaineers are 52nd against opposing points, and coming into the tournament, they allowed over 23 DraftKings points per game. The Mountaineers like to speed up the tempo, so that should provide a boost to whichever player mans the point for the Cats.