College Football DFS Picks: Thursday, Week 1: Joseph Fagnano, Bryson Barnes Stand Out as Names to Know

The top college football DFS picks for the today are here, detailing where you should attack for your lineups in Thursday's slate. Hint, it's from UCF.

There are dozen college football games tonight in the first Thursday night of action for the 2023 college football season. FanDuel offers up a slate of four games to choose from in multi-team contests and the options for your DFS picks today are vast and wide.

Thursday Week 1’s College Football DFS Picks

All values below come from FanDuel’s multi-team entries for the weekend. Looking to sign up for FanDuel? New customers bet $5 and get $200 in bonus bets guaranteed.  Click here for more details

SuperFlex (1.5x points): John Rhys Plumlee, QB, UCF ($12,400)

This one’s a no-brainer. The Kent State roster is in shambles after Sean Lewis left his post as head coach and a mass exodus of players followed suit in the transfer portal.

No quarterback is as dynamic with both his arm and his legs than John Rhys Plumlee in this time slot, and no defense is more porous. Plumlee should have a field day through the air and perhaps an even better game on the ground.

The only hang up here is whether or not he stays in the game long enough to score more than four touchdowns. But it’s worth the bet as they work out kinks and prepare for a much tougher schedule down the road.

Quarterback: Joseph Fagnano, UConn ($4,500)

Get to know the name, folks: Joseph Fagnano. The former Maine quarterback transferred to the UConn Huskies and won the starting job of the dual-threat Zion Turner and longtime Husky Ta’Quan Roberson.

Fagnano is a career 5,500-plus yard thrower with nearly 60 touchdowns through the air during his time with the Black Bears. He’s an unknown commodity to most, but certainly not the UConn offense which will likely hum with his passing ability.

The Huskies have a stable of running backs to deploy and Fagnano should thrive with play-action against NC State. Though Fagnano has the talent to keep this game close, there’s a chance some garbage-time scoring drives help buoy his spot.

Making his case for quarterback play even stronger, the salaries at FanDuel clearly haven’t taken into account that he was named the starter as he’s below both Turner and Roberson in price. Grabbing Fagnano allows you to load up on talent elsewhere.

Running Back: RJ Harvey, UCF ($9,500)

And load up you should, on UCF Knights, that is. RJ Harvey is the top-priced running back for good reason as the Kent State defense wasn’t good at stopping the run a season ago, and didn’t help matters this offseason.

Harvey is in line for a massive uptick in production this season and the Golden Flashes defense should be in a tough spot against his all-around ability. The Knights reworked their offensive line with key additions, including their new center Drake Metcalf and left guard Bula Schmidt, both whom are known for their run-blocking prowess.

Grab Harvey and don’t think twice.

Running Back: Jordan Houston, NC State ($8,500)

The NC State Wolfpack offense has been a great and balanced unit over the past few seasons, noticeably offering favorable situations for their quarterbacks with play action and short-area passing concepts. With Brennan Armstrong in the fold, the Wolfpack will likely lean into the rushing attack to get him going in his debut game with the team.

That means a heavy dosage of Jordan Houston to start the game against UConn. And that means Houston runs behind their veteran starters on the offensive line. Dylan McMahon, Derrick Eason, and Timothy McKay from center to right tackle are as good as they get on Thursday night and should have their way with a smaller UConn front.

Houston will have ample space to run and plenty of yards before contact, which of course is great for a back like Houston, who thrives of making yards after contact.

Wide Reciever: Kobe Hudson, UCF ($8,800)

The first of the big-time UCF threats to come off our board and into our DFS lineup is Kobe Hudson. Don’t be alarmed that Hudson got the “or” designation as the starter on the outside for UCF, that’s likely just for Trent Whittemore than anything else.

Hudson, who slowly came into the picture for the Knights a season ago, turned on the jets (literally) to close out 2022. He hauled in three touchdowns and over 200 yards over the final three games of the year and likely benefits the most from an improved Plumlee at quarterback.

Kent State doesn’t have the secondary members to stick with the UCF duo at receiver in this game and you can hedge your UCF bets by nabbing both.

Wide Reciever: Javon Baker, UCF ($7,800)

Javon Baker is the fourth UCF player on our roster tonight but by no means is he fourth in importance. Baker wins outside with his rare blend of speed and size. At 6’1″ and 208 pounds, Baker is a big-play threat in every sense of the word.

It’s a talented group of pass catchers for the Knights, but Baker’s prowess on the outside and his documented ability to defeat CB1s on the opposite side of the field makes him an incredibly savvy play.

Stacking him with Hudson only furthers what should amount to a large lead for you during the early slate of the Thursday night games.

Wide Reciever: Daniel Jackson, Minnesota ($8,000)

What exactly the Minnesota Golden Gophers receiving room looks like in 2023 is still a mystery. As they brought in a bevy of talent through the portal and retained the services of longtime Gopher Chris Autman-Bell, Daniel Jackson remains one of the knowns from his time at Minnesota.

Jackson is a lifetime 15-yards-per-catch player and has the speed to lift the top off a defense. Nebraska is unveiling their new-look offense but lost in that discussion is what they did to fix a defense that was susceptible to big plays through the air a year ago.

Jackson has proven to be one of Athan Kaliakmanis’ top targets once he was instituted into the lineup, and if you’re going to play a Gopher this evening, he’s the one.