This article is part of our DFS College Basketball series.
It's Day Two of the college basketball season, and I'll be here on Wednesdays and Saturdays to guide you through the DFS contests available on DraftKings and FanDuel. Let's make some coin together!
As is typical for CBB slates, the offerings for the two major sites are slightly different. While they share four of the more popular games, DraftKings has added the Wisconsin-Green Bay/Purdue matchup to their contests. I will add an additional paragraph for that game at the end of the article, but our primary focus will be on the four games that they share together.
With every lineup build I make, it's important that I give a close look at how the sportsbooks are rating the available contests. I'm looking for games with a high Over/Under and a narrow point spread, as these games have the highest probability of optimal production.
UNC (-10.5) vs. ND O/U: 152
FSU (-4.5) @ PITT O/U: 141
OSU (-6) vs. CIN O/U: 139
UVA (-2.5) @ SYR O/U: 126.5
PUR (-19.5) vs. WISC-GB O/U: 154
(Odds provided via FanDuel Sportsbook and are subject to change)
No one can replicate the amount of research Vegas oddsmakers do to set their lines, but no amount of statistical dives can accurately predict how these teams will perform early in the season. I do think there are some spots here that are fairly reliable, however. We can predict with enough reliability that the UNC/ND game will be a high-scoring affair, and the fast-paced Seminoles should be able to keep things quick against Pitt. Conversely, the Cavs are notorious for a methodical pace, and while I think the O/U against Syracuse is a little low, it's enough to warrant a more limited exposure.to this matchup.
In lineup construction, I'm going to identify three players at each position at varying salary points. My Utility section will include additional players to consider and deep values in the bargain bin.
Cole Anthony, UNC (DK $7,600, FD $7, 000) vs. ND
Tarheel fans are anxiously awaiting the season debut of their newly-anointed point guard, who was the runaway winner of Preseason Freshman of the Year honors and also registered in the top-10 for the national recognition. The five-star prospect should get no interference for the starting role, although new arrival Anthony Harris (undisclosed injury) should see time as his backup once he is fully healthy. In an exhibition game versus Winston-Salem, Anthony put up an 11-point, seven-assist line in 28 minutes on the court, and his dime-dropping should significantly improve his point totals.
Prentiss Hubb, ND (DK $6,200, FD $5,900) @UNC
The sophomore now has the unquestioned starting gig at point guard and with one season under his belt, we should see a more commanding presence as the floor general of this team. While he popped with a few double-digit scores toward the end of last season, it's his assist totals that will really enhance Hubb's value at this price.
M.J. Walker, FSU (DK $5,400, FD $5,000) @ PITT
Walker will begin the season as the Seminoles' starting two-guard, and his production will likely be enhanced early with newcomer RayQuan Evans (hamstring) brandishing a questionable tag. Much like Hubb above, Walker showed flashes of potential last season but needs to develop into a more consistent scoring threat if he hopes to hold on to his starting job. I expect him to log significant minutes from coach Leonard Hamilton on Wednesday.
Kaleb Wesson, OSU (DK $7,900, FD $7,800) vs. CIN
The center was chosen to be part of the Preseason All-Big Ten team and was one of only three unanimous selections. He considered entering the NBA Draft, but ultimately decided to return for another year – and the Buckeyes couldn't be happier. Last season, he averaged 14.6 points and 7.9 rebounds over 32 games, and really came on strong at the end of last season with double-doubles in his final four games.
Patrick Williams, FSU (DK $6,800, FD $4,800) @ PITT
Not a lot of people are discussing Williams on this slate, and I'm frankly shocked at his price on FanDuel. The incoming freshman was a consensus All-American and a five-star recruit who should immediately make an impact with the Seminoles. The Seminoles liked him because his playing style evoked memories of former FSU great Dwayne Bacon, and he may very well be a more versatile performer than the current Charlotte Hornet. He went through high school as a guard before a huge growth spurt that forced him into a wing role. At 6-8, he's got ball-handling experience that many guys at his height don't possess. I expect him to help stretch the floor as well, as he's well-equipped to shoot the three.
Nate Laszewski, ND (DK $5,700, FD $4,700) @ UNC
Expectations were high for Laszewski as he was just getting into a groove before going down with a back injury that essentially ended his season. Juwan Durham played in his absence, and performed well enough to engender some competition for a frontcourt starting job. I feel that it's Laszewski's job to lose, however. It's a risk-reward pick, but he should be a low-owned option that could have big upside on Wednesday.
The two players worth targeting in this DraftKings-only game are Purdue's Jahaad Proctor ($7,300) and Matt Haarms ($6,900). Haarms is a legit double-double threat in this lopsided game, and Proctor is a transfer from Ohio who lit up the MAC Conference with some dynamic scoring lines.
UTILITY AND DEEP DIVES
Both of the Cumberland boys, Jarron and Jaevin, should be considered heavily as they'll be of great help for Cincinnati this season Jarron is the more experienced player and Jaevin is a brand-new transfer, and their prices reflect the difference in the two players. I will definitely give both of them some exposure.
The following are some bargain candidates who could make a difference on Wednesday:
F Terrell Brown, PIT (DK $5,800, FD $5,400) vs. FSU
G Dane Goodwin, ND (DK $5,000, FD $4,600) @ UNC
G Casey Morsell UVA (DK $5,200, FD $6,400) @ SYR