Brevin Pritzl was born and raised here in Wisconsin. Playing basketball at De Pere High School — just outside of Green Bay, Wisconsin — Pritzl led the Red Birds to four conference championships in four seasons.
Pritzl also solidified himself in the school record books as a prolific scorer, with 1,720 points over his career, helping the Red Birds earn 84 wins in the same period, an average of 21 wins a year.
Pritzl has gone on to be an impactful yet under-the-radar bench player for the Badgers over the past four years. As a redshirt junior this season, Pritzl has averaged 5.1 points per game to go along with 2.3 rebounds per game. Pritzl has also shot 45.4 percent from beyond the arc, leading the team in three-point percentage.
Men’s basketball: No. 19 Wisconsin get back on track with win over Penn StateThe No. 19 University of Wisconsin men’s basketball team (20-9, 12-6 Big Ten) defeated the Penn State Nittany Lions (12-17, Read…
While most University of Wisconsin basketball fans know exactly who the sharpshooting junior is, many fans outside of Wisconsin have never even heard his name.
“Playing steady and solid is all you can ask for,” Pritzl said in reference to how he contributes to the team.
Pritzl has only scored 149 points this entire season, but 90 of those have come from behind the three-point line.
Pritzl has also stayed under-the-radar by consistently coming off the bench, with just 21 starts in his career, all of which came last season with a young Badgers squad riddled by injuries.
Pritzl’s shooting abilities have also helped to open up the floor for the rest of Wisconsin’s roster.
Clutch is a very prevalent word to describe Pritzl. He doesn’t always post the big stat lines, but it seems as if every time Wisconsin finds themselves in a mid-game run, Pritzl gets his hands on the ball somehow.
“It’s just me staying ready and being shot-ready at every moment. Knowing where the shot is going to come from or how you’re going to get to them, it’s just staying ready,” Pritzl said.
Men’s basketball: As Badgers wrap up season, Ethan Happ’s free throw woes could end up costing themOne of the fundamentals of winning college basketball games is good free-throw shooting. As games come to an end, regardless Read…
In the Badgers’ loss to Indiana last Tuesday, Pritzl was second on the team with a +11 rating, second only to Kobe King at +19. This shows that Wisconsin was, in general, more successful with Pritzl on the floor, including during their comeback in the middle of the second half.
Pritzl also serves as a fairly good indicator as to whether the Badgers will win or not.
In games Wisconsin has won this season, Pritzl is averaging 6.3 points, shooting 51.3 percent, including 47.1 percent from three and also pulling down nearly three rebounds per game.
On the contrary, Pritzl is averaging just 2.5 points, 1.2 rebounds, and shooting 41.2 percent in games lost by the Badgers. These stats are fairly telling of Pritzl’s impact on a game, even if it is a small one.
While it is clear that Pritzl, who has shot 14-for-19 — 73.7 percent — from three in his past ten games, is a great shooter, his greatest weapon may be his ability to get involved in anything that is happening on the floor.
This includes being sixth on the team in rebounds, assists and getting to the free throw line. Pritzl is also fifth in generating steals. All of these stats lead the bench players for the Badgers, showing his efficiency when he is on the floor and how he truly represents the title of the sixth man on this Wisconsin team.
Pritzl talked about being the sixth man on the team and how important it is to provide depth to the Badger offense.
“It’s really important. If you can have people come off the bench and perform for extended periods of time it allows starters to get some rest so they can perform at their best ability,” Pritzl said.
Football: Alex Hornibrook to leave UW in pursuit of finishing his career elsewhereThe three-year starting quarterback for the University of Wisconsin football team Alex Hornibrook notified Head Coach Paul Chryst early Wednesday Read…
One such example of this is from the Badgers’ game against Michigan State at the Kohl Center earlier in mid-February. With the game tied about halfway through the first half, Pritzl drew a flagrant foul from Michigan State’s Matt McQuaid.
Pritzl proceeded to sink both free throws and in the ensuing possession, drained a corner three to complete a five-point possession individually and give the Badgers a five-point lead. Pritzl finished that game with seven points, two rebounds and a block.
Three other games from this season stand out as Pritzl-esque, including Houston Baptist in mid-November, Illinois in mid-February, and the Badgers’ most recent game against Penn State.
In the Badgers’ blowout win against Houston Baptist, Pritzl provided value all across the board, shooting a lights out 5-for-5, including 3-for-3 from three-point land, finishing with 17 points. He also added three rebounds, an assist and a steal.
During the Illinois game, some of Wisconsin’s top offensive and defensive producers struggled to find their stroke. While Ethan Happ and Trice combined for a total of 13 point — a value both have surpassed alone multiple times this season — Pritzl’s play was able to make up for these losses by way of a six point and game-leading ten rebound game.
In Wisconsin’s most recent game against Penn State Saturday, Pritzl tied his season-high for points by pouring in 17 points on 5-for-5 shooting, including 4-for-4 from three. He also added two rebounds and hit a free throw late to put the game away.
The overall lesson that can be learned here is that Pritzl, while not the most flashy player, may be one of the most valuable bench pieces for Wisconsin.
Without Pritzl, the Badgers may not find themselves primed to go into the NCAA Tournament as a potential 4 or 5 seed in March.
While Head Coach Greg Gard’s use of Pritzl may come into question at times, there’s no question that Pritzl is a player that any team headed into March Madness would want to add as valuable depth.