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'BTPowerhouse 25' - #24 Bryant McIntosh

BTPowerhouse's staff counts down the best players in the Big Ten heading into the 2015-16 season.

Mary Langenfeld-USA TODAY Sports

In the months leading up to the 2015-16 college basketball season, BTPowerhouse will be releasing a new series called the 'BTPowerhouse 25,' which features the Top 25 players in the Big Ten as voted by members of the staff. All players set to be on Big Ten rosters for next season were eligible during the staff vote with their top selection receiving 25 points and their 25th and final selection receiving 1 point.

Today's edition will take a brief look at Bryant McIntosh of Northwestern, who came in at #24 in the rankings. The Wildcats hope that he can be a key piece to get them back into the postseason.

'BTP 25' - #24 Bryant McIntosh:

  • Eligibility: Sophomore
  • Career Totals: 32 games, 1,066 minutes, 366 points, 79 rebounds, 150 assists
  • 2014-15 Averages: 33.3 min, 11.4 pts, 2.5 rebs, 4.7 asts, 0.2 blks, 0.3 stls
  • Positional Role: Point Guard
The Wildcats have been far from perfect with Chris Collins at the helm, but the program has seen some excitement shot back into the program thanks to its recently upswing in recruiting, partially highlighted by the addition of Bryant McIntosh. He entered the program with respectable recruiting rankings, but many thought he might have been a bit underrated. He got off to a great start last season and ended up making the All-Big Ten Freshmen team. Though he was far from perfect, he was a key piece in allowing Northwestern to get some major upsets late in the year.

Player Strengths

Two of the skills that built McIntosh's game last season were his ability to find teammates in the passing game and hit shots from long range. McIntosh was actually one of the Big Ten's better passers as he ended up #2 in the conference in assist rate of players who played serious minutes. He also ended up at #6 in the conference in total assists last season. McIntosh wasn't as dominant from long range, but his 36.4% shooting from 3PT range really made him a dynamic offensive tool and an efficient player with a 101.4 offensive rating. Passing is usually a starting point for a good point guard, but being a long range shooter just makes him an even tougher to guard.

Areas for Improvement

As mentioned, though McIntosh was great at finding teammates and shooting from long range, he still had plenty of issues. To start, he had some issues with turnovers that did hold back the offensive somewhat. He led the team with 2.5 turnovers per game and his 20.5 turnover rate was one of the more underwhelming rates on the team. Sure, he had the ball a lot, but his efficiency would go up significantly if he held onto the ball a little more. Another issue was a bit of an underwhelming interior game. He shot 45.2% from 2PT range and he ranked #41 in the conference in his ability to get to the free throw line among significant contributors. He was great once he got there, but being more efficient inside and getting more fouls would add a lot to his game.

Player Projection

In theory, McIntosh has a lot to grow as a player. He was just a freshman last season and with some general freshmen to sophomore improvement, could be set to become a much better player. However, McIntosh was consistently one of the most used players on the team last year and will be playing alongside Tre Demps and Alex Olah yet again. He could get into All-Big Ten Honorable Mention or maybe even 3rd team All-Big Ten, but it's hard to see him reaching the top group just because his area for growth is limited. Still, he should be one of the better backcourt players in the Big Ten.

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'BTPowerhouse 25' Rankings: