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Grant Gurtin
Beat the Odds 3/9/19

Vegas expert Zack Cimini gives you his top plays for tonight’s DraftKings college basketball tournaments.

Mar 9th

We’re excited to introduce our first daily fantasy sports column: Beat the Odds – CBB. Each Tuesday and Saturday, we’re going to help you get prepared to play daily fantasy college basketball on DraftKings.

Writing the column will be Zack Cimini. Zack lives in Las Vegas and is a very successful college basketball handicapper. Zack will use all of his experience analyzing games to provide us with key games to focus on for your lineups, potential blowouts, and slow paced games to avoid. 

Saturday marks the final day of the 2018-2019 regular season in college basketball. The majority of conference tournament seeding is intact so what will be team’s primary motivation Saturday?        

Much like towards the end of non-conference play, teams are looking to fine-tune some of their recent struggles and get tournament ready.

Games to focus on

Florida State at Wake Forest

One of the hottest teams in college basketball that remains under the radar is Florida State. They’ve won eleven of their last twelve games and are undefeated in overtime games this season (3-0). They’ll take on a Wake Forest team that has some confidence in losing to Duke by just one point, 71-70. Expect Wake Forest to play with the same loose energy in hopes of pulling off an upset, while Florida State looks to keep traction on their winning ways.

Phil Cofer-Florida State $4,400

Leadership goes a long ways in a team over-achieving from their talent. Phil Cofer offers that as a fifth year senior for Florida State. Hindered to start the season with a foot injury, Cofer has seen a drastic drop down in production. On the year he is averaging 7 PPG and 4 RPG (13 PPG, 5 RPG LY).  A large factor in that is Florida State has kept a restriction on Cofer’s minutes. That has began to change as Cofer logged a season-high thirty-six minutes in their last game against Virginia Tech. Playing a Wake Forest team that is defensively challenged expect the veteran Cofer to be an under the radar performer.

Brandon Childress-Wake Forest $7,700

On February 26th I mentioned Butler-Providence as a game to stay clear of for a potential blowout. The game nearly got out of hand with a big Providence lead before Butler climbed back in it. Saturday they’ll meet just nine days apart from their first meeting. For two teams not known for scoring this creates a value scenario for DFS buys on both teams.

Butler at Providence

On February 26th, I mentioned Butler-Providence as a game to stay clear of for a potential blowout. The game nearly got out of hand with a big Providence lead before Butler climbed back in it. Saturday they’ll meet just nine days apart from their first meeting. For two teams not known for scoring this creates a value scenario for DFS buys on both teams.

Aaron Thompson-Butler $4,500

Thompson is by far the deepest sleeper since this column began. On the year his stats are very modest with an average of six points per game along with four assists. In-conference the sophomore has managed to score double-figures on just two occasions. Coming off a performance where he was shutout is not intriguing. Against Providence earlier this season he had three steals. Expect an uplifting performance from Thompson as a low-dollar buy.

Alpha Diallo-Providence  $9,300

Diallo’s numbers as of late haven’t been worthy of a high-end player buy for DFS. It appeared that extra defensive focus had worn Diallo down in the middle of conference play. Fatigue was evident not in just the stats column but Diallo’s penchant for getting in foul trouble. In his last seven games he has had four or more fouls in five of them. Look for Diallo to be fresh Saturday. Conference games scale back at the end of the season. Providence has played just two games since February 23rd.

Potential blowouts

Georgetown at Marquette – One of the more peculiar end of season team conclusions has been with Marquette. The Golden Eagles have lost three consecutive games after a strong 23-4 start. Saturday they’ll face a Georgetown team they narrowly defeated 74-71 January 15th. Expect the Vegas spread to be heavily influenced on the Golden Eagles looking to regain their form. As the last game of the regular season before the Big East tournament, this is a game to avoid on the DFS slate. 

Slow pace alert

Syracuse at Clemson – Syracuse and Clemson are well-known college basketball teams but not because of their offensive capabilities. Points per game both teams rank in the bottom tier with Syracuse ranking 254th while Clemson ranks 264th.  Don’t expect that to change Saturday as the first meeting between the two resulted in a 61-53 Syracuse victory. Furthermore, Syracuse is coming off a horrible loss to Virginia in which they allowed the Cavaliers to shoot 18-25 from three.

Fanium Lineup

(bolded players featured in article)

PositionNameTeamSalary
GBrandon ChildressWake Forest$7700
GAaron ThompsonButler$4500
GAlpha DialloProvidence$9300
FPhil CoferFlorida St$4400
FJermaine SamuelsVirginia$4400
FDavid McCormackKansas$3200
UTLindell WiggintonIowa St$6600
UTKy BowmanBoston College$9900
Insight by
Grant Gurtin
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