DFS College Basketball: Saturday Late Games Preview

DFS College Basketball: Saturday Late Games Preview

This article is part of our DFS College Basketball series.

Four conference finals are mirrored across DraftKings and FanDuel on Saturday night, tipping off at 6 p.m. EST. The Big East game between Villanova and Creighton has the biggest spread of the slate (7.5 to the Wildcats) and the lowest total (129.5), so it figures to be largely ignored in builds, especially on the Creighton side as underdogs. But the winning side of the two regular-season meetings scored at least 75 points, so that may offer some contrarian options for GPP builds. That said, this slate seems to have more favorable pricing across the top names, so there's plenty of value to be had.

Paolo Banchero ($8,800 DK, $8,500 FD) leads player pricing across both sites, and rightly so coming off consecutive 40-plus DKP double-doubles. He's followed at DraftKings by two teammates, with Wendell Moore ($7,800 DK, $7,900 FD) looking like a nice blend of top target and value. But we'll try to differentiate a bit below.

Top Targets

Keve Aluma, F, Virginia Tech ($7,300 DK, $7,100 FD)

Aluma has scored at least 18 poiints in each of the Hokies' last three games, posting one double-double. He erupted for 25 points and 10 rebounds (45.0 DKP) earlier against Duke and will have to be heavily featured if the Hokies are to pull off an upset. The Hokies play at the nation's 14th-slowest pace, per KenPom, and that's their path Saturday night. Duke surprisingly is 157th, so there is some risk, but it's minimal given that Aluma is central to the Virginia Tech's game plan.

Jaime Jaquez, G/F, UCLA ($7,200 DK, $8,300 FD)

The price at DraftKings is going to make Jaquez highly owned, but that's easily justifiable. He's in terrific form, with the 19 points (31.25 DKP) he posted Friday a four-game low. It's a game of contrasting styles, with Arizona seventh in tempo and UCLA 257th, and I have concerns about the Wildcats pushing the pace without point guard Kerr Kriisa ($6,100 DK, $5,000 FD), but Jaquez isn't priced high enough at DraftKings to bust. And his ability to score in volume while also contributing across the board gives him ample upside.

Mid Tier

Jalen Wilson, F, Kansas ($6,600 DK, $5,900 FD)

To win this slate, you have to be a tad uncomfortable and willing to use players in these lower-scoring contests. Texas Tech ranks first in defensive efficiency and 218th in tempo, but Kansas put up at least 67 points against the Red Raiders in both regular-season games, so the Jayhawks aren't going to bottom out. Wilson was all over the place in those games, going for 20 points and just two rebounds once and then nine points and 11 boards in the other game. Both games led to 30 DKP, however, so he clearly has multiple ways to get there. Consistent minutes and a likely tight game are clear recipes for fantasy points.

Jermaine Samuels, F, Villanova ($5,900 DK, $5,300 FD) 

Samuels is priced the same as Duke's A.J. Griffin ($5,300 DK, $5,100FD) at DraftKings, and seems far more stable, so he gets the nod to give you a safe 20-plus DKP and move on with your builds. He erupted for 21 points and 12 rebounds Friday, showing season-high upside, but Samuels has failed to reach 20 DKP just once in Villanova's last 11 games. He posted 25.75 and 27.75 DKP in two regular-season meeting with the Bluejays, averaging a stable 14.5 points and 7.0 rebounds. 

Values

Kevin McCullar, G, Texas Tech ($4,900 DK, $5,000 FD)

The takeaway with McCullar is that he played 30 minutes Friday vs. Oklahoma. Sure, it led to only 13.25 DKP, but the point is he's healthy and seems assured of getting as much run as he can handle in this conference finale. He made a meager 12.25 DKP in the only meeting he was healthy for previously, but that's largely because of a 1-of-11 shooting performance. He has double-double potential, which gives big upside rarely found in this pricing tier. And a repeat of Friday's showing doesn't hinder much given the low number and ample value across this contest.

Justin Kier, G, Arizona ($4,700 DK, $5,100 FD)

Kier figures to be a lazy value play with high usage Saturday night, but that doesn't make it wrong. He moved into the starting lineup Friday due to Kerr Kriisa's ankle injury and saw 32 minutes. It led to 13 points, five boards, three assists and a steal, which is more than enough to take this seemingly free square, as you're not going to find a new starter in this pricing tier. And that doesn't take into account the near even spread and the slate's highest total, making this a clear game to target. Pelle Larsson ($4,300 DK, $4,100 FD) is an intriguing contrarian option for an even further discount.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Chris Bennett plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: k30kittles, DraftKings: k30kittles.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chris Bennett
Bennett covers baseball, college football and college basketball for RotoWire. Before turning to fantasy writing, he worked in scouting/player development for the Atlanta Braves and Montreal Expos. He's also a fan of the ACC.
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