College Football Daily Fantasy Helper: Friday 12/30/22

With daily fantasy football so popular, it was only a matter of time before it translated to the college level.

FanDuel offers college football daily fantasy contests now in most states, and there's a twist on the NFL ruleset. You select a quarterback, two running backs, three wideouts (which can include tight ends), and a "SuperFLEX" that can be any of those positions.

Finding target data for pass-catchers in college can be difficult, so finding out which players are on the field and getting work can make all the difference. Naturally, there are also more lopsided outcomes in college, so balance game scripts appropriately! Your running back's monstrous first half could lead to a bagel in the second.

Friday's slate is the last before we're battling for a title, but this five-game slate is the largest we've had all week. Variety in DFS is awesome, so we'll take that for sure!

Note: All stats are from All tables are sortable by any category.

The Slate

AwayTeam HomeTeam HomeSpread Total RoadTotal HomeTotal
Maryland NC State -1.5 45.5 22 23.5
Pittsburgh UCLA -7.5 54.5 23.5 31
Notre Dame S Carolina -3.5 50.5 23.5 27
Ohio Wyoming +2.5 41.5 22 19.5
Tennessee Clemson -5.5 63.5 29 34.5

While the nightcap between Tennessee and Clemson should contain the fireworks, this is a pretty usable slate across five games.

The largest spread (7.5 points) features a moderate total, and -- as we'll get to -- the lowest total has some exploitable matchups to still target.

A quick scroll of the FanDuel player pool also bucks a trend we've seen all bowl season. There really aren't as many skill players sitting out Friday's game.

Defensive Matchups and Rankings

Note: Higher numbers are easier matchups for the opposing team. Lower numbers are better rankings and tougher matchups.

Team Defensive Passing YardsPer Attempt Rank (FBS) Defensive Rushing YardsPer Attempt Rank (FBS)
Maryland 15 41
NC State 43 25
Pittsburgh 16 10
UCLA 83 39
Notre Dame 33 45
S Carolina 31 113
Ohio 78 87
Wyoming 47 89
Tennessee 72 14
Clemson 24 8

Maryland, North Carolina State, Notre Dame, Pitt, and Clemson were defenses we avoided all season in daily fantasy, but that list is too large to turn away from all of them here.

Let's focus on matchups we can exploit, which starts with the South Carolina rush defense. That'll play right into the run-heavy Irish's hands. As they square off, Ohio and Wyoming both struggle with run defense, too.

Through the air, the Pokes can also exploit the Bobcats, but Tennessee and UCLA are two of the weaker pass defenses on the slate, too. Something tells me we'll look at their signal callers.


Even in a tough matchup with the Panthers, Dorian Thompson-Robinson ($12,000) crossed 30 FanDuel points in 6 of his 12 contests this year. I'd be nuts to cross him off.

Still, I'd give the top honors on this slate to Cade Klubnik ($9,700). Klubnik was sensational in his first start of the year, completing 83.3% of his throws in a dominant performance during the ACC title game. In the game with the day's largest total, Klubnik has already shown he's capable of exploiting a poor pass defense like the Vols.

We saw Caleb Williams and C.J. Stroud light up the Notre Dame pass defense, so don't forget the red-hot Spencer Rattler ($8,300). Rattler has racked up 798 passing yards in his past two games versus Tennessee and Clemson.

This slate isn't bad in the value bin, either. I'd normally write off a replacement quarterback for a bowl game, but we saw Nick Patti ($7,200) deliver for Kenny Pickett in last year's Peach Bowl. He's got the best matchup on the slate against UCLA. Andrew Peasley ($6,800) is also a run-first option from Wyoming who has eclipsed 70 rushing yards in three games this year.

Running Backs

It would be tremendous if Sieh Bangura ($10,000) gets the Group of 5 popularity dip on this slate with bigger names.

Bangura has seen 20.0 carries a game in his past five entering this favorable matchup with Wyoming, and he's scored five times in that same stretch. He's the one true workhorse tailback I can feel confident about on this slate.

Of course, Zach Charbonnet ($11,000) has the workload (21.6 carries per game in his past five), but on top of a brutal matchup with Pitt, he's eligible for the NFL draft this year. UCLA might just be keeping his availability close to the vest, and his absence would send Keegan Jones ($6,500) into a pretty stellar role.

Israel Abanikanda is confirmed out, but luckily, we know the plan for Pitt. Rodney Hammond Jr. ($7,000) turned 28 carries into 134 yards and a score when Abanikanda sat against Syracuse.

Will Shipley ($9,200) and Roman Hemby ($8,000) have okay roles as predominant backs in their backfield, seeing 47.8% and 51.3% of their team's carries in the past five weeks. They -- along with Audric Estime ($7,700) -- are good bets for goal-line work, too.

Jabari Small ($7,700) is one more guy that is draft eligible, so we'll wait until kickoff (so is the game we play with college kids) to see if he's going to play for the Vols. Jaylen Wright ($5,600) has already regularly stepped in for him -- and scored 10 touchdowns -- this year.

Wide Receivers

I have a market-share-centric approach, but it doesn't do Antwane Wells Jr. ($9,400) justice.

His 27.7% target share is just third on the slate, but he's seen at least 24 targets (35.3% share) in Rattler's two breakout games. He's separated from his peers on the perimeter for South Carolina.

The two guys ahead of him -- at various salary levels -- are Pitt's Jared Wayne ($9,000) and Wyoming's Joshua Cobbs ($6,000). Cobbs' 5.8 looks per game aren't stellar volume, but he'll get the bulk of the work if Wyoming trails.

Wayne's connection was primarily with Kedon Slovis, and Nick Patti could also have a different lead target he prefers. Konata Mumpfield ($6,700) did have a 26.5% target share this season, too.

Biletnikoff Award winner Jalin Hyatt and teammate Cedric Tillman won't suit up for pass-happy Tennessee, which will thrust most of their work on Bru McCoy ($8,800) and Squirrel White ($7,500). Joe Milton III ($10,500) is the new quarterback in light of Hendon Hooker's injury, and Milton targeted White a team-high eight times against Vanderbilt.

Jake Bobo ($8,500) is DTR's clear top guy with a 22.1% target share. No other UCLA target surpassed an 18.0% share.

There should be enough value at running back to not have to dip too far down at wideout, so it's worth mentioning that Ohio's Sam Wiglusz ($8,200) had a much higher target share this year (23.6%) than teammate Jacoby Jones ($7,700). Jones' hot stretch of chunk plays still hasn't closed a sizable edge in yardage share (25.0% vs. 19.6%), either.