DFS College Basketball: Thursday Preview

DFS College Basketball: Thursday Preview

This article is part of our DFS College Basketball series.

Top Players

 Colby Jones, G, Xavier ($8,600 DK, $7,200 FD) 

Xavier has been one of the best rebounding teams in the country, thanks in large part to Colby Jones, posting the highest offensive rebounding rate on the team. This is noteworthy because Ohio State, somewhat surprisingly, has performed below average on the defensive side of the glass. Jones is playing the second-most minutes on the team in addition to using the second-most possessions, a great combination for DFS purposes. And if that's not enough, Jones had the seventh-highest steal rate among all Big East players during conference play last season, underscoring his defensive prowess. Jones should play a significant, productive role in today's game, providing an incredibly high floor at the very least. 

 Luis Rodriguez, G/F, Mississippi ($8,000 DK, $6,100 FD)

Rodriguez does it all. Last year, he led the Rebels in rebounding and steals and had the second-most assists. This year, being one of the primary upperclassmen, Rodriguez leads the team in usage rate while continuing his stat-sheet stuffing ways. Ole Miss played two easy games to start off the season, causing reduced minutes for the Rebel starters. This is a much closer matchup on paper, so I'm expecting Rodriguez to be on the court for most of the game, barring any unforeseen injury or foul trouble. 

Middle Tier

 KJ Buffen, F, UAB ($5,500 DK)

This game has the highest over/under on the table, so it's not a bad idea to take a piece of the action. On the UAB side, Buffen was a prolific offensive rebounder and shot-blocker in his three years at Ole Miss before transferring to UAB this season. With a solid usage rate of around 23 percent, Buffen is sure to be involved. Buffen saw reduced minutes in the first games of the season, although, similar to other teams on the slate, UAB has yet to play a competitive matchup, causing starters to play reduced minutes. Being a starter with nearly 100 games worth of experience under his belt, Buffen shouldn't have any issues providing value assuming he sees a normal workload in what should be a competitive contest. 

 Zed Key, F, Ohio St. ($5,000 DK, $5,900 FD)

While E.J. Liddell is rightfully receiving most of the spotlight, his frontcourt teammate cannot be overlooked. Key has scored double figures in each game this season while leading the team in rebounds, an excellent floor for someone with a relatively low salary. The Buckeyes are projected to score around 70 points today, but it wouldn't surprise me if they blow past that number, considering they currently boast the ninth-highest offensive adj. efficiency rating in the country, per KenPom. Key offers nice upside without much risk, hard not to like.

Values

 Jalen Hill, F, Oklahoma ($4,500 DK)

Oklahoma is going up against the weakest defense on the slate, per KenPom's adj. efficiency ratings, so the Sooners need to be considered if you're playing on DraftKings. Hill currently sports the highest offensive efficiency rating among starting Sooners while leading the team in minutes, rebounds, and steals. An all-around key player for the Sooners, Hill should be heavily involved throughout the game, even though he probably won't lead the team in shot attempts.

Wildens Leveque, F, South Carolina ($3,800 DK)

This one feels like a must-start. Leveque easily leads the team in rebounds and has scored the second-most points on the team. Leveque has already recorded one double-double this season, and he wasn't too far off from having a double-double in each of the three games played this season. Leveque doesn't have an exceptionally high usage rate, but he makes up for it by having the highest offensive efficiency rating on the team. Looking at the matchup on paper, South Carolina has a major rebounding advantage, a favorable situation for Leveque specifically. Both of the teams involved in this game love to play fast, ensuring Leveque will see plenty of opportunities for both points and rebounds alike.

Editor's Note: Today's must-play is arguably David Jones from DePaul, who is grossly mispriced on DraftKings at just $4,000. He's the team's usage leader after putting up 55.3 and 38.8 DK points over two games to begin the 2021-22 season.

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. Steve Peralta plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: Buddusky, DraftKings: Buddusky24.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Steve Peralta
Graduated from USC in 2012 while interning for ESPN and FOX Sports. Following graduation, I started working full-time for FOX Sports and been there ever since. Been an avid fantasy player for over fifteen years. In addition to my fantasy teams, you'll also find me rooting for the USC Trojans and New York Yankees.
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