This article is part of our College Football DFS: Weekday Slate series.
For Wednesday's games, DraftKings and FanDuel are rolling out an identical slate of MAC conference matchups.
Western Michigan @ Akron (+18) O/U: 54.5
Eastern Michigan @ Kent State(-6) O/U: 62.5
Buffalo @ Northern Illinois (+13) O/U: 52.5
Ohio @ Central Michigan (+3) O/U: 58.0
Miami (OH) @ Ball State (+2) O/U: 55
Bowling Green @ Toledo (-22) O/U: 62.5
The slate presents a bit of a double whammy. The MAC's assortment of teams is generally an unknown quantity for DFS in general. Since the conference kicks off on Wednesday, we have zero metrics to analyze for the current season. I'll do my best to do the heavy lifting for you, but it might help to do a little homework about the teams you are unfamiliar with. We can look at the Vegas odds as a decent indicator of competitiveness and production, which puts the premier matchup of EMU and Kent State my favorite game in terms of game totals and spread differentials. The team I am most likely to fade is Akron, a team that didn't win a single game last year and finished last in almost every offensive category. Western Michigan is a run-first team, so some Broncos runners are worth considering despite the blowout potential.
It will probably be wise to eliminate some teams at quarterback right off the bat as Ohio, Central Michigan, Buffalo, and Toledo have all been cagey about who will get the signal-caller duties. While contrarian potential exists at quarterback for these teams, I like the reliable options much better.
Dustin Crum, Kent State (DK $9,200, FD $10,500) @ Eastern Michigan
While Crum might look a bit overpriced, it's no surprise to see Crum at the top of my projections. After taking over for Woody Barrett last year, Crum threw an astounding 20 touchdowns with only two interceptions and was notorious for going deep with 10 completions of 50-plus yards. With no competition beneath him, Crum is primed for a stellar season for the Golden Flashes. Stacking Crum with wideout Isaiah McKoy (DK $8,000, FD $9,400) should yield a prolific total.
Drew Plitt, Ball State (DK $8,100, FD $9,700) @ Miami (OH)
Plitt is a slightly lower-priced option to Crum, and with a bevy of starters returning for The Cardinals, Pitt will enjoy one of the best supporting casts of any quarterback on the slate (more on them below). Plitt helped the Cardinals to lead the conference in passing touchdowns last season, and despite a 5-7 season, they led the conference in total offense. What may kill the Cardinals in the game is their defense, so it will fall to Plitt to control the clock when they have the ball.
Matt McDonald, Bowling Green (DK $5,700, FD $6,700) @ Toledo
If you're looking for a lower-priced, less popular target under center, the former Boston College transfer emerges as an excellent target to consider. For the Falcons, the passing game has nowhere to go but up, as their air attack ranked 120th in the nation with an average of fewer than 160 yards per game. Coach Scot Loeffler is counting on McDonald to step up and transform this offense. He carries a bit of risk in his first contest but is a sensible contrarian play.
Also consider: Preston Hutchinson, Eastern Michigan (DK $6,100, FD $8,100) @ Kent State
Jaret Patterson, Buffalo (DK $9,800, FD $11,000) @ Northern Illinois
Much like Crum, Patterson looks too expensive as the chart-topper at his position, but the Bulls are going to hand Patterson the rock all day. With 1,799 yards and 19 touchdowns last season, Patterson led the MAC in rushing and once again has a strong offensive line to help him out. The Huskies have some real issues on defense, especially in their secondary. Patterson is set up to embarrass them Wednesday.
Bryant Koback, Toledo (DK $8,200, FD $9,900) vs. Bowling Green
Koback actually had more exposure for me than Patterson in my builds, and most of that is due to an abundance of question marks for Bowling Green's defense. The junior racked up almost 1,200 rushing yards to go along with 12 touchdowns last season, and it's expected that they'll lean on the running game in this lopsided affair.
Davion Johnson, Miami (OH) (DK $5,200, FD $7,000) vs Ball State
With both Jaylon Bester and Tyre Shelton out for the foreseeable future, Johnson figures to take on a considerable role in the offense Wednesday. The junior isn't an unknown quantity, as he scored two touchdowns last season, but with the budget salary, you're going to be assuming a bit of variance. Johnson and the next back I list will be needed to keep your costs down.
De'Montre Tuggle, Ohio (DK $5,300, FD $7,300) @ Central Michigan
O'Shaan Allison is atop the depth chart for the Bobcats, but Tuggle outplayed Allison last season with 644 yards and 11 touchdowns, and an impressive average of over six yards per carry. With one of the higher money totals and a narrow spread, this game should allow both teams to diversify their snaps enough to give both running games a clear shot. Tuggle has a crowded backfield to deal with, but his numbers demonstrate an ability to break open with a big play.
Also consider: Caleb Huntley, Ball State (DK $6,700, FD $9,100) @ Miami (OH)
Justin Hall, Ball State (DK $7,100, FD $8,400) @ Miami (OH)
Like the aforementioned Crum-McKoy connection, Hall and Drew Plitt make for a great stack on the slate. Of all the teams available Wednesday, the Cardinals come into the season with the best chance to improve on their record with a lot of players returning. The 1-2-3 punch of Plitt, Huntley and Hall makes for an imposing trio of fantasy production, and if Hall has a good game, the team has a great shot to cover. Yo'Heinz Tyler (DK $5,500, FD $7,100), while not on the same level as Hall, is a cheaper way to get involved in this offense at wideout.
Jack Sorenson, Miami (OH) (DK $5,200, FD $7,500) vs. Ball State
While Brett Gabbert didn't make our final cut at quarterback, he's still a very serviceable option, and due to the loss of standout tight end Andrew Homer, Sorenson figures to be the #1 target for the passing offense. He ended last season with 124 yards and a touchdown against Central Michigan.
Tyrone Scott, Central Michigan (DK $4,500, FD $6,700) vs. Ohio
Although Kalil Pimpleton and JaCorey Sullivan are great targets for presumptive starter Daniel Richardson, Scott has the most potential to pop with a slate-breaking play in relation to his salary. Pimpleton and Sullivan are fine and will thrive in DraftKings' PPR scoring system, but their prices are a bit prohibitive if we splurge at quarterback and running back. Although he only notched 37 receptions last season, Scott scored five touchdowns and averaged around 20 yards per catch.
Also consider: Antonio Nunn, Buffalo (DK $5,800, FD $7,800) @ Northern Illinois
Other potential lower-cost options for the slate:
QB Kaleb Eleby, Western Michigan (DK $7,000, FD $9,000)
RB Andrew Clair, Bowling Green (DK $6,900, FD $8,000)
WR Skyy Moore, Western Michigan (DK $6,300, FD $8,900)