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The Northwestern Wildcats have become one of the most impressive stories of the 2022-23 basketball season, going from near the bottom of the Big Ten Last Year to finishing the season 2nd in the conference this year. Helping guide that effort is Brooks Barnhizer, a sophomore guard out of Jefferson High School in Lafayette, Indiana. Playing a crucial role for the Wildcats off the bench, Brooks has helped Northwestern to their 21-11 record over the year as they prepare for more in the upcoming NCAA tournament. As Brooks prepares for the chance to cement the Wildcats as a top team in the Big Ten, he plays with God at the center.

Photo Provided by Brooks Barnhizer
Coming out of high school, Brooks was ranked as the 5th best player in Indiana and 25th best small forward in the country according to After playing in just 11 games his freshman year, Brooks has become a centerpiece for the Wildcats in the 2022-23 season. As Brooks has grown as a basketball player during his time in Evanston, he also says that faith has continued to become the most important part of his life.

“My faith journey started as a child, but as I really grew up and came to college, it grew stronger and stronger as I went through more and more.”

Now preparing for the NCAA tournament and the chance to show what they are capable of, Brooks looks to play each game with God as his guide. He says that throughout every situation, he wants to use his gifts as an outlet to glorify God.

“Faith plays a huge role in my basketball career because it serves as a main purpose of why I do what I do. Everything I do is for God’s glory.”

Photo Provided by Brooks Barnhizer
Brooks has made that his goal, and says having that mindset eases the pressures of the game and allows him to go out and play the game that he loves with joy every chance that he gets.

When talking to Brooks, he makes it known that it isn’t about him. Quick to point the praise to his teammates and give the credit to those around him, Brooks says that he just is so grateful for the opportunity to wake up and play for Northwestern. When talking about his goals throughout his career, he says he wants to use the game to point others to Jesus.

“I hope to spread God’s glory and teachings through my platform and gifts as much as possible.”

With the season now wrapping up, eyes will be glued to March Madness as fans prepare for what should be one of the most exciting tournaments ever. As Brooks and the Wildcast prepare for their chance to advance throughout March, Brooks continues to play for a greater purpose. Regardless of the circumstance, Brooks looks to always be a light and demonstrate God’s love wherever he goes.


Ethan Kruse

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