Who else enjoyed the wild Saturday of college football bowl games with the CFB Playoff semifinals giving us two of the best games of the season?! Well, let's run it back with a full Monday slate of college football bowls for our CFB DFS lineups. The college football DFS slate kicks off with the ReliaQuest Bowl at 12 pm ET between Mississippi State and Illinois. Then it's on to USC vs Tulane in the Cotton Bowl and LSU vs Purdue in the Citrus Bowl. Finally, the Rose Bowl caps off the day with Penn State taking on Utah. Check out all the CFB DFS top picks, lineup strategies, teams to target, and value plays to lock in for these college football bowl games. Remember, you can access all of our College Football DFS coverage with a Fantasy Alarm All-Pro Subscription. If you have any questions about CFB daily fantasy lineup strategy, ask away in the Fantasy Alarm Discord chat. Plus, check out our college football daily projections and the CFB DFS lineup generator for more winning picks. Now, let's jump into the CFB DFS top plays and lineup picks for the College Football bowls on Monday, January 2nd.


College Football Bowl Game Betting Odds – Monday, January 2

(via DraftKings Sportsbook)

  • 12 pm ET – Mississippi State (-2.5) vs Illinois – 46 O/U (in Tampa, FL)
  • 1 pm ET – Tulane vs USC (-2.5) – 63.5 O/U (in Arlington, TX)
  • 1 pm ET – LSU (-14.5) vs Purdue – 56 O/U (in Orlando, FL)
  • 5 pm ET – Penn State vs Utah (-1.5) – 53 O/U (in Pasadena, CA)


College Football CFB DFS Picks – Friday 01/02 Bowl Games

CFB DFS Quarterbacks

Caleb WilliamsUSCTUL860032.631250030.94
The Heisman winner plans to play in the Cotton Bowl despite hurting his hamstring in the Pac-12 title game. If he’s on the field, Williams is always a top play for DFS and he should be motivated to play well to end the season on a high note heading into next year. He likely won’t be running it as much as he usually does, but Williams’ arm talent alone makes him a top play headlining the high-scoring USC offense. Bank on him being popular in cash.
Cameron RisingUTAHPSU750024.87980024.25
Though he’s facing a tough Penn State defense, Rising should do plenty for cash or GPP lineups. He threw for 300+ yards, three TDs, and 29 DK in the Pac-12 title game vs USC and has been pretty automatic for 20+ DFS points on a weekly basis. Rising offers a strong floor for cash and good upside for GPP. He has experience playing in the Rose Bowl last year and is a good pivot away from Caleb Williams and/or Michael Pratt.
Michael PrattTULUSC720026.31000025.37
After winning the AAC title, Pratt has committed to returning to Tulane next season instead of entering the transfer portal. That’s a positive factor immediately for his motivation to play well on a big stage in this bowl against USC. He faces a weak Trojans’ pass defense that ranked 113th nationally in passing yards allowed per game this year. Pratt had a 25:5 TD:INT ratio this season and added 10 rushing TDs too. He’ll offer a strong cash floor in this matchup vs USC for your Super-Flex.
Austin BurtonPURLSU52005.7974006.78
Burton is the starting QB for Purdue now that Aidan O’Connell is opting out. Burton barely played this season, but he did get one spot start back in Week 4 with O’Connell out. He had 19 DK in that contest vs FAU, going 21-for-29 through the air with three TDs. LSU definitely presents a tougher test, but Burton should be throwing it a ton in this one and could return value based on his volume. He also brings some dual-threat talent to the table and offers upside with the running ability.

Also Consider:

  • Jayden Daniels – LSU (GPP)
  • Sean Clifford – Penn State (Cash/GPP)

CFB DFS Running Backs

Tyjae SpearsTULUSC690023.681020022.63
Spears will play in this bowl instead of opting out, which is a good sign that he should be motivated to play well. Tulane’s stud RB will play in the Senior Bowl, but he can use this soft matchup vs USC’s poor defense as another showcase for NFL scouts. Spears has been an excellent DFS play all season and he should give us his usual 25-30 DFS points in a workhorse role against a below-average USC rush defense. He's the clear top RB to play in cash on this slate.
Nicholas SingletonPSUUTAH640015.97820014.51
As has been the case for most of this season, both Nick Singleton and Kaytron Allen are upside GPP plays from Penn State’s backfield. Unfortunately, both are priced a tad too high to play in cash lineups as they split the workload and take away from each other. Plus, this matchup vs Utah’s tough rush defense complicates things even more. Singleton, though, has the talent to go off for 100+ yards and multiple TDs no matter the matchup. He has the ceiling to be the slate’s top scorer at RB.
Josh WilliamsLSUPUR540011.76700010.52

UPDATE: Williams is reportedly out today. Bump up John Emery and Noah Cain as good value RB plays. 

Williams has been a good value RB for us all season and he’s still really affordable on DK for this bowl game. With LSU expected to play with a lead in this game, Williams should see 15-20 touches and put up 100+ total yards with 20 DK or more. The young RB sets up to be LSU’s lead back for next season and he should be motivated to play well as one of the offense’s top playmakers.

Ja'Quinden JacksonUTAHPSU530010.7875009.89
Jackson emerged as Utah’s top RB in the final part of the season and he was the team’s top backfield option in the Pac-12 title game with 105 yards and two TDs on 13 carries. Jackson looks like he’ll be Utah’s lead back in 2023 and he should get a ton of work in this bowl with next season in mind. Penn State has a good rush defense, so temper expectations. But Jackson is still cheap enough to roster in cash or GPP.
Simeon PriceMSSTIL37003.6953003.09
Mississippi State’s backfield featured Jo’quavious Marks and Dillon Johnson both getting plenty of work as rushers and pass-catchers this season. Well, we have Johnson now in the transfer portal. While that should make Marks a better play overall, Simeon Price could move into Johnson’s vacated workload of splitting the Miss St backfield with Marks. That makes him a strong GPP value with the chance at double-digit DFS points at this cheap price.
Josh McCrayILMSST32003.2751002.60
After missing most of the season due to injury, McCray has been 100% at bowl practices according to Bret Bielema. The Illinois head coach also said that McCray could get the ball “often” in this bowl and has looked strong at practice. Reggie Love may be the starter and see the majority of touches with Chase Brown sitting out, but McCray is a great GPP value and he could easily outscore Love. Last year, McCray had a couple of 100+ yard games when given the carries and he was Chase Brown’s top backup before getting hurt.

Also Consider:

  • Devin Mockobee – Purdue (GPP)
  • Austin Jones – USC (Cash)
  • Reggie Love – Illinois (GPP)
  • Jo'quavious Marks – Mississippi State (Cash)

CFB DFS Wide Receivers

Tahj WashingtonUSCTUL670014.06860011.46
Washington came on strong in the final stretch of the season with six TDs over the last six games. He emerged as a favorite target for Caleb Williams and that’ll be more evident on Monday with Jordan Addison sitting out. It’s Washington and Mario Williams as USC’s top receivers for this bowl, and getting one of them into cash lineups alongside Caleb Williams is a good strategy.
Malik NabersLSUPUR650012.6890009.15
Nabers has been a top pass-catcher for Jayden Daniels all season, but he’ll be locked into even more targets and receiving production for this bowl. LSU will be without Kayshon Boutte (NFL), Jaray Jenkins (NFL), and Jack Bech (transfer) now – which means Nabers is the clear most proven receiver left. He ended the season strong with five catches for 128 yards and a TD in the SEC title game and seven receptions in both of the two games prior.
Mario WilliamsUSCTUL610012.76830010.76
If you don’t want to pay all the way up for Washington, then Williams is a viable cheaper option who could easily outscore his fellow USC receiver. Williams sets up to likely be the Trojans’ top pass-catcher next season and he’ll benefit in this bowl with Jordan Addison sitting out. Williams has the proven upside of 20-25 DK at his best, and there will be added targets now with Addison out. Kyle Ford and Brendan Rice are two cheaper USC receivers to consider too.
Duece WattsTULUSC550012.68700011.00
Shae Wyatt and Duece Watts are the top two Tulane receivers to pair with Michael Pratt or get one-off exposure to this matchup vs USC. Watts has been a TD machine with a score in eight of 11 games this season and he remains a top red zone target for Pratt. He went off for 134 yards and 25 DK in the AAC title game and now has 10+ DK in seven of the last eight contests.
Caleb DuckingMSSTIL530011.4868009.98
In Mississippi State’s pass-heavy Air Raid attack, all of the receivers have the opportunity to return value. With Rara Thomas transferring away, the remaining Bulldogs’ WRs all get a bump up for this bowl. Ducking, in particular, should be a top red zone option for Will Rogers now. Ducking’s eight TDs led the team this season and Thomas’ seven scores were the second-most. Illinois was good against the pass this season, but the secondary lost two starters to NFL opt-out.
Thomas YassminUTAHPSU51008.8857008.00
With Dalton Kincaid sitting this bowl out, Yassmin is Utah’s top receiving tight end now. We know the tight ends are a big part of Utah’s passing game and Yassmin should benefit from an increased pass-catching role as one of Cameron Rising’s top targets – heading into next season as well. He had an impressive catch-and-run TD in the Pac-12 title game and has even scored in four of the past five games for Utah.
Money ParksUTAHPSU45006.6657005.62
After barely doing much for Utah this season, Parks ended the year strong with 14 and 18 DK in the final two contests. That includes four catches for 88 yards and a TD in the Pac-12 title game. Parks sets up to be a top receiver for Utah next season and Rising has started to build a rapport with him. Let’s hope that continues in the Rose Bowl with Parks being a good value play.
Brian Thomas Jr.LSUPUR40008.462006.44
Thomas is one of a few LSU receivers who will step into a bigger role for this bowl and heading into next season. As mentioned above, Kayshon Boutte and Jaray Jenkins are off to the NFL and Jack Bech is transferring away. Thomas should get the start on the outside for LSU and he can easily smash his cheap price tag with the added targets and snap share. Since Jayden Daniels is returning next season, he could look to start building a better rapport with Thomas.
Deion BurksPURLSU30002.9952002.03
The sophomore is expected to step into a bigger role for this bowl game with Charlie Jones opting out. The Boilermakers could look to get him plenty of targets because he could also be a key piece of the offense next season. Burks is a fast and shifty receiver who averaged 9.9 yards per catch this season, though he only had 15 receptions. He’s very much unproven and rostering a Purdue receiver is risky with Aidan O’Connell out, but it’s possible new QB Austin Burton targets Burks plenty for him to return value.

Also Consider:

  • Jaylen Dixon – Utah (GPP)
  • KeAndre Lambert-Smith – Penn State (GPP)
  • Lideatrick Griffin – Mississippi State (Cash)
  • TJ Sheffield – Purdue (Cash)
  • Kyle Ford – USC (GPP)
  • Kyren Lacy – LSU (GPP)


CFB DFS Core Plays

DraftKings Cash:

  • Caleb Williams – USC
  • Michael Pratt – Tulane
  • Brian Thomas – LSU

DraftKings GPP:

  • Cameron Rising – Utah
  • Nicholas Singleton – Penn State
  • Mario Williams – USC

FanDuel Cash:

  • Caleb Williams – USC
  • Tyjae Spears – Tulane
  • Michael Pratt – Tulane

FanDuel GPP:

  • Malik Nabers – LSU
  • Nicholas Singleton
  • Josh McCray – Illinois

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