2007-08: Little known at the start of the season, Justin Schultz's offensive upside was high enough that some experts were seeing him as a potential first rounder in the draft. Schultz had 40 points in 57 games for Westside, and was named the Top Defenseman of his conference in the BCHL, which is no small feat for a 17-year-old. Schultz was drafted by the Anaheim Ducks in the second round, 43rd overall, of the 2008 NHL Draft.
2008-09: In his final season playing in the BCHL, Schultz posted 15 goals, 35 assists, and 29 penalty minutes in 49 games. He also managed 7 powerplay goals.
2009-10: Playing on a Wisconsin defense that is one of the deepest in the country, Schultz was able to step in as a freshman and make a contribution. He even logged some power-play minutes, finishing the season with 6 goals (including 5 on the powerplay), 16 assists, and 12 penalty minutes through 43 games.
2010-11: Schultz was one of the top defenseman in college hockey as a sophomore at the University of Wisconsin. In 41 games for the Badgers he scored 18 goals with 29 assists and was +16 with 28 PMs; scoring 9 of his 18 goals on the power play. Schultz was named the WCHA Defensive Player of the Year and was named to the WCHA and NCAA West First all-star teams. The Badgers finished an uncharacteristic seventh in the WCHA; falling to Colorado College in a tightly-contested three-game first round playoff series.
2011-12: Schultz was the second-leading scorer for the University of Wisconsin as a defenseman in his junior year. The Badgers struggled much of the season finishing under .500 (17-18-2) for only the third time in Mike Eaves' ten-year tenure. An assistant captain, Schultz was plus-11 with 16 goals and 28 assists and had 12 penalty minutes in 37 games. Seven of his 16 goals were scored on the power play. Drafted by Anaheim in 2008, Schultz never signed with the Ducks, becoming an unrestricted free agent, and signing a two-year entry-level contract with Edmonton In July 2012 – foregoing his senior season at Wisconsin.
Justin Schultz has been one of the finest rearguards in the nation two seasons running. He has a complete offensive game, capable of igniting plays from his own zone, carrying the puck through the neutral zone and making confident, creative plays in the offensive zone. He has shown a strong commitment to improving his defensive game and strength, although he will never be a physical force.
Schultz faces all the challenges a thinner defenseman faces trying to make the leap to the NHL, as well as an adjustment to the 82-game schedule. Nonetheless, he possesses such a comprehensive skill set and sound work ethic that it hardly seems like a reach to project him as a top-four defenseman.