Similar Styles - Northwestern

The funny thing about Northwestern is that no team plays particularly like the Wildcats. Oh sure, on offense there are teams that take a high percentage of threes and don't go to the free-throw line too often, but those teams aren't ones that have problems guarding the interior.

Northwestern has allowed opponents to score 48.4% of their points inside of the two-point arc. That's 296th in the country. It means that the defensive profile - of being out-matched in the post - doesn't fit the profile of many major conference teams. But you'll see what I mean as we go through this exercise.

Once again, I compared all the point distributions scored and allowed of all of the NCAA clubs between threes, two and free throws. These are the results:

Similar Style - Offense:

  1. VMI
  2. Drake
  3. William & Mary
  4. Iowa
  5. Arizona State
  6. Mississippi State
  7. Denver
  8. Central Michigan
  9. Davidson
  10. North Carolina A&T

Alright, there are a couple major conference teams on this list. Iowa, Arizona State and Mississippi State all play with the big boys. The Bulldogs are even on the NCAA Tournament bubble. Still, Northwestern profiles to something much closer on offense to the gunners at VMI and Drake - two notably three-point happy teams - than the Hawkeyes or Sun Devils.

Similar Styles - Defense:

  1. Central Florida
  2. Columbia
  3. Creighton
  4. Santa Clara
  5. UC Santa Barbara
  6. Pepperdine
  7. Bucknell
  8. Campbell
  9. UMBC
  10. Bryant

Yes, there was a list that honestly compared Northwestern and the last team in NCAA Division I to win a game this season (Bryant). Well, ouch. Also, this list includes not a single major conference team. The Northwestern defense has been leaky all season, and even here it looks like the style isn't a very successful one.

Similar Styles - Overall:

  1. Arizona State
  2. William & Mary
  3. Drake
  4. Davidson
  5. North Carolina A&T
  6. Eastern Kentucky
  7. Marist
  8. Creighton
  9. Cornell
  10. Northern Colorado

The sad fact here is that Cornell is probably the only team on this list that is going to make the NCAA Tournament. It's hard to find three-point gunners. Most of the teams are much more similar to Northwestern on offense than they are on defense, for the record. Although that might be a good thing for the Big Red. If Mississippi State makes the tournament it would be another team to watch.

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Tags: Northwestern, statistics

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