The team doesn’t stretch the floor much in terms of shooters—Law plays well outside and shoots 43.2 percent from long range, but that’s best among starters. With nobody other than Lindsey and Law consistently capable of creating their own efficient shots, it comes as no surprise the Wildcats have topped 75 points just twice in conference play, once against Penn State and again versus Iowa. (Neither team ranks among the top 125 scoring defenses.) The Northwestern offense as a whole is capable, it just isn’t all that impressive outside of its versatile sophomore forward.


The part of the team that makes it look like a capable tournament squad, though, is its defense. The Wildcats play an aggressive man defense, constantly jumping help-side passing lanes for turnovers and the occasional transition buckets.


Lindsey, junior guard Bryant McIntosh, and stat-stuffing forward Sanjay Lumpkin are capable of defending a variety of backcourt types, making switches on off-ball screens a viable option for disrupting an opposing team’s set.

Even when it spreads itself thin for a corner shooter and challenges opposing players off the dribble or on the block, Northwestern’s lineup can hold its own. Law and Lindsey put this on display during a first-half series against Ohio State, as Law holds his own against shooting guard Kam Williams after his man sets an off-ball elbow screen and Lindsey turns the missed shot into a quick layup on the other end.

Behind some improved play from Lindsey and McIntosh and their standout defense, the Wildcats head into the roughest stretch of the season with a historic record, winning streak, and ranking. The hype has been justified through 22 games. Let’s see how the next four go.