This article is part of our College Basketball Waiver Wire series.
It may be a light week without a lot of obvious role changes or impact injuries to dissect, but there are still a few key names worth checking out with conference play about to get into full gear. Let's take a look at some potential impact adds on the waiver wire.
Editors Note: We also published a mid-season update to our overall top-150 rankings on Sunday, which may help with some of those pressing add/drop decisions during the upcoming waiver period.
Marek Dolezaj, F, Syracuse
We've seen flashes from Dolezaj before, so it's anyone's guess if his recent surge is the new norm, or just a blip before he eventually fades. But the Orange are one of many teams that rely strictly on their starting five for production, and Dolezaj is one of those. He's managed double-digit rebounds in consecutive games, handed out seven or more assists in two of three, and scored at least nine points in eight straight. His minutes have nowhere to go, which should lend itself to consistency.
Pat Spencer, G, Northwestern
Spencer may not be a priority add until we see how the Wildcats' injury situation shakes out, but the early return is encouraging. He poured in 22 points and added eight assists Sunday with Boo Buie and A.J. Turner sidelined, and Anthony Gaines is now out for the year. Spencer has been far from consistent, but it looks like he'll be needed at least in the short term for more production, and that opportunity has the potential to grow.
Myles Johnson, F, Rutgers
This is working on the assumption that Rutgers players are largely ignored in season-long formats, because, why wouldn't they be? Johnson has been a terrific source of rebounds all year, having recently grabbed at least 10 in four straight and seven of nine. If you can find scoring elsewhere, he can provide a major boost on the glass while adding 1.6 blocks to boot.
Mustapha Heron, G, St. John's
This seems a bit too obvious, but in larger player pools, it's likely Heron was dropped by owners as he hadn't played since December 10 due to a high ankle sprain before returning Sunday. He saw only 22 minutes, and frankly, he wasn't great prior to injury, doing little more than score. But the talent remains, and Heron should be added where available, as he'll surely see plenty of minutes in conference.
Sean McDermott, F, Butler
Maybe McDermott was added in November after he opened with a 26-point outing against IUPUI. Maybe he was dropped after being shut out by Stanford six games later. But McDermott has found some consistency of late, scoring in double-digits in seven straight and is now coming off of consecutive double-doubles. He's a clear second option to Kamar Baldwin, and a reliable one at that.
Ethan Thompson, G, Oregon State
Guys averaging 16.4 points, 4.6 rebounds and 4.6 assists aren't likely available in many leagues, but looking at Thompson's profile page, he isn't getting enough ink around here. Lets hope league mates have an east coast bias, and only know Tres Tinkle as a fantasy option for the Beavers, as Thompson is surging, having scored 20+ in four of six.
Shakur Juiston, F, Oregon
Juiston doesn't do any one thing well, but he's a multi-category contributor that can help round out lineups or provide bench depth. He's got a stable 23.6 percent usage rate, just returned from a five-game absence due to injury so is assuredly available, and chips in 8.5 points, 6.2 boards and 2.3 assists nightly.
Santiago Vescovi, G, Tennessee
Vescovi may be the priority pickup of the week, as it's rare to find someone with such clear opportunity this late in the year. Upon being granted eligibility, Vescovi was immediately trust into the starting lineup and provided 18 points, six rebounds and four assists in 34 minutes, hoisting 13 shots and going 6-9 behind the arch. He did commit nine turnovers, so there will be some growing pains, and he won't have the element of surprise moving forward. But the Vols lack options elsewhere, so Vescovi will get his chances.
Dru Smith, G, Missouri
The Evansville transfer is finding his groove, having scored in double digits in three straight and four of five. He's been a nice source of steals all year, averaging 2.2 thefts, and the 4.2 assists and 4.5 rebounds give him plenty of value in all formats. The Tigers don't have much else, and the all-around contributions leave Smith a safe floor every time out.
Tier 2 Conferences
David Collins, G, South Florida
Tier 2 conferences have the tendency to feature such a deep player pool, managers can be liberal with their add/drops for even the slightest of injuries. Collins missed one game due to an ankle issue, and didn't start in his return against SMU. That changed Saturday with a 15-point, three-rebound, four-assist, four-steal, two-block outing against Connecticut. Collins should be claimed wherever available.
Isiaih Mosley, F, Missouri State
A deep name to consider where the Missouri Valley Conference is in the player pool, Mosley is a freshman clearly trending upward. He's scored in double-digits in four straight, entering the starting lineup in the last two and playing 36 minutes in each. He's chipping in enough peripherally and given the current form, seems unlikely to relinquish his current opportunity.
It looks like forward Nate Grimes and his near double-double averages will be absent from the lineup due to a wrist injury for a few more games. Robinson has taken advantage of having the Bulldogs' interior all to himself, as he's coming off of a 23-point, 13-rebound outing, his third 20+ point game in four contests. Williams meanwhile is as streaky as they come, but pumped in 32 points by way of 10 3-pointers in the Bulldogs' last game and looks to have more of a green light in Grimes' absence. Both have some stand alone appeal with Grimes returns, but make great streaming options for the short term.
JoJo Walker, G, Portland
Walker returned to the starting lineup for the first time since December 7 and provided 19 points, five rebounds and six assists. He's put together consecutive double-digit scoring games now, and while his start was a result of Isaiah White sitting out with an illness, Walker did make eight starts before a couple of DNPs. A move back into the lineup seems possible regardless of White's status.
Keshawn Justice, F, Santa Clara
Justice is in a nice groove, scoring 20, 24 and 26 points over his last four games (with a five-point dud). He's hitting 41.8 percent from long range, and with the green light to take more, having moved into the starting five over the last six games, Justice is blossoming.