Welcome to Part I of How To Be Successful at DFS College Basketball! In this first article of the series I am going to give you a brief run-down of all the things that go into a day/night of research for College Basketball and as the series goes on I will look to get more in-depth with each research topic and try to use examples of what I am referring to in each instance.
When it comes to CBB DFS we do not get the gigantic playing fields that the other sports get, even CFB, however we do get some nice little GPP’s that are ripe for the picking as there are a lot of lineups that I would refer to as “dead” due to the starting of guys who are known out for a period of time, sitting out the season due to transfer rules and/or those who are losing their minutes due to a returning starter/returning eligible player.
Without further ado, let’s get started!
The first thing I look at when I sit down to write/build/research is KenPom’s website as he gives a ridiculous wealth of information out and his site is relatively inexpensive to become a member of for a year, I highly recommend it! There are a number of things to take a look at on this website, however the first thing I check out is the FanMatch as it gives his predicted score for each game of the night. At this point I find myself trusting his projected score more so than Vegas’ which should tell you all you need to know. The other things on the site that I check out are each team’s overall rating, team and players’ offensive ratings, shot %, rebounding % and assist %. The site gives you an idea of each team’s tempo as well as each team and player’s tempo free rankings. You can also find out the type of defense a team primarily plays.
The second thing I take a look at are the most recent box scores for each team as it will give me an idea of how the rotations/minutes are being utilized. This will also allow me to pinpoint fluke performances that may be dictated by a player’s foul trouble, blowouts or just pure ineffectiveness vs a better defender. Blowouts are NOT a huge thing in CBB as coaches tend to leave their stars in until the last minute or so of the game, however once in a while a coach will coast the last 5-7 minutes of a game.
The third thing that I take into account is my personal eye test. Now I understand some of you will not be able to utilize this as much because you do not watch a ton of CBB games, which is completely ok, however I really trust my eye as somebody who has watched thousands of CBB games over the last handful of years. With a new baby I haven’t watched as many as I would like this season and because of that I try to utilize google and YouTube to watch some clips of games in order to see certain players in action.
The next thing that is paying close attention to is the particular site’s scoring system that I am looking to build a lineup on. Right now the two main sites are FanDuel and DraftKings and there is definite differences as FanDuel penalizes a full point for a turnover while DraftKings offers bonuses for 3’s and double-doubles as well as triple-doubles.
To go along with the site’s scoring rules, I try to figure out what my goal number is as far as total points. The two sites are definitely different in this aspect as well due to the fact that FanDuel has a $60K cap and DraftKings has a $50K cap.
One of the last things I take a look at are the team’s schedules as it will show how often they’ve been playing or will be playing over the next week. There are times this comes in handy as an example from earlier this season as UW-Milwaukee was playing their 4th game in 5 nights to basically begin the season. This will also allow me to look more at the box scores and figure out rotations. To go along with the schedules and box scores I also head to donbest.com to find any injury news they may have for each team.
To finish off, I will generally google or twitter search players who have had some injury questions or some other news that has popped up in order to get as much information as I can because the lack of info for college sports is ridiculous at times. By searching twitter, it will also help me find out who some people are touting as plays and it can give me an idea on whether it should be somebody that is on my radar or if it’s somebody I need to fade because of my personal thoughts on that particular game.
This is a brief run-down of some of the things that I focus on when I sit down to start building lineups. The overall process is very similar to any of the other sports in which we play DFS for, just that CBB tends to be the toughest to get the information for.
Hopefully you guys enjoy this article series and I will look to get Part II out in the next couple of days! And as always, make sure to leave comments below or find me on twitter with your thoughts, questions or suggestions! Best of Luck!