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MAC Basketball Top 25: #1 G Julius Brown, Toledo Rockets

Every day from now until the beginning of he season we'll be counting down the top 25 players in the MAC for the upcoming season. Today we reach our number one, Julius Brown of Toledo.

Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Julius Brown has had one of the best careers for a point guard in Mid-American Conference history. He is third in conference history in total assists and ninth in minutes played.

He's still got a year left, too.

While he likely won't catch all-time assists leader D.J. Cooper, who has an absurd 934 career assists, he'll certainly pass former Kent State guard DeAndre Haynes' 625 assists for second all-time. Out of all of the players in Division I last year, Brown was thirteenth overall in assists per game and will probably be in the top ten this year.

If there is one thing Brown knows how to do, it's distribute the ball. It's telling that the number one player in our countdown isn't just the highest scorer in the league, but is the one who makes the most impact on the game. Whenever the ball is in Brown's hands, something good is likely going to happen. He knows how to find the open player and has enough talent around him that his passes usually turn into made baskets.

But that doesn't mean Brown is always a pass-first point guard. He'll look out for himself too when the opportunity presents itself. Brown was seventh in the conference in scoring last year at nearly fifteen points per game and scored twenty or more points eight times last year.

Brown's shooting percentages have improved each year over his career. Where he has really improved the most, though, is in his three-point shooting. He shot just 27% from deep during his sophomore year and was able to bump that up eight percentage points to a respectable 35% last season. He continues to be money from the free throw line, hitting at a career-best 87% last year, good for fifth in the conference.

The Rocket floor general has shown no signs up letting up his strong play going into this season. In Toledo's exhibition win over Findlay, Brown had twelve points and eight assists while playing the most minutes on the team. Brown will be asked to do a lot this year along with being the team leader. If he can dish out knowledge to the younger players like he can with the basketball, this team will be right there in the end for an NCAA Tournament berth.