The futility of Northwestern basketball first really sank in when Bobby Knight, a fractious sort known for throwing chairs, lobbed a compliment the Wildcats’ way.
“If I’m watching this game,” the legendary Indiana coach said, “I’m rooting for Northwestern.”
Easy for him to say. The Wildcats had just fought valiantly against Knight’s Hoosiers in 1994, only to fall short, as most everyone knew they would, extending another losing streak that eventually reached nine games.
Defeat was something that anyone who attended Northwestern would come to grudgingly accept, like Chicago winters that froze your eyelashes. I endured more than my share of both covering the Wildcats in...